MOBILE, Ala. — The North team, coached by Matt Patricia and the Detroit Lions, took on the second wave of practice in Day 1 of the 2020 Reese’s Senior Bowl. Despite the chillier weather conditions and the longer stretch period, the North practice window showcased a more organized and satisfying session than the South team.
To no surprise, the wide receiver group — for both rosters — gained tremendous attention throughout the day. Denzel Mims out of Baylor stole the show early on in practice and coasted till the horn blew. He dominated at the catch point showcasing appreciated ball tracking skills and awareness. He was smooth in his transitions and showed his instincts and concentration and breaking down his route to get open. His play near the sidelines was superb. Mims showed balance and technique in all facets of his reps this afternoon. His balance and technique also carried over to the blocking element of the game. Mims stayed squared and balanced when contact was initiated. In one rep, the Baylor receiver got popped initially but did not lose any ground. He stayed the course, anchored and won the rep by bullying his matchup five or so yards down the field.
As Mims showed promise as an exterior blocker, so did Liberty wide receiver Antonio Gandy-Golden. The senior was probably the most technical blocker among both receiver groups on Tuesday. He kept his hands square and tight while keeping balance and appropriate positioning to shield the contact. As a pass catcher, Gandy-Golden also proved his worth. He showcased his strong mitts in a couple of instances grabbing a handful of contested passes near the sideline. Despite not being a gifted mover as far as short area quickness goes, he made the best of it by supplementing his below average lower body flexibility by out-muscling a few of his matchups.
Liberty WR Antonio Gandy-Golden winning at the top of the route with physicality pic.twitter.com/03UH3MStdk— Brad Kelly (@CoachBKelly) January 21, 2020
Once again, another receiver showed out. Ohio State reception leader (207) KJ Hill showcased the most technique among receivers today. The nuanced route runner showed just that with smooth transitions in and out of breaks and tremendous stop and start ability. He can easily gear shift at all levels of the field and showcases enough short area quickness to open up a comfortable window for the quarterback. Despite a lean frame (6-0, 192), Hill can operate at all levels of the field with maybe an exception on the outside versus press.
Showcasing his versatile skillset at Oklahoma, Neville Gallimore continued that trend in Mobile this afternoon. Winning in a multitude of ways at the point of attack with rip throughs, swims and club moves, Gallimore constantly found himself in the backfield with a chance to make a play on the ball. His motor (effort) never quits — though on film, one will notice he can lose stamina — and he proved that today winning some reps in 11-on-11 situations on just pure effort and prowess. The compact defensive tackle ranges from a 1-tech to a 3-tech and maybe a few more techniques down the line, but his dominant trench play this season in Norman partnered with today’s performance is giving off high Day 2 vibes.
Our Russell Brown sat down with Gallimore during Tuesday’s media session:
Jim Nagy, Senior Bowl executive director, hand picked a few sleepers across the offensive line that some may not be overly familiar with: Ben Bartch (Saint John’s), Alex Taylor (South Carolina State) and Matt Peart (Connecticut). When asked about Peart’s upside in Monday night’s opening press conference, Nagy quickly said that he sees shades of D’Brickahaw Ferguson when he turns on the tape. He did add that Peart won’t be that high of a pick, of course, but the praise tells you enough about his athletic profile and potential.
Peart had an above average day overall but did run into some miscues. His positive moments consisted of anchoring against bull rushes and attacking with his hands. He displays a nice blend of hand placement with patience while also keeping appropriate body positioning. His miscues featured matching up against speed. Josh Uche of Michigan ran by him with a quick first step and Peart didn’t have the foot speed to match. Not many in this tackle group in Mobile would have either. Though Peart wasn’t clicking on all cylinders, he turned in a nice under par scorecard in his first outing.
The teams swap practice times on Wednesday as the North will lead the way at 12:30 p.m. CT. The South is scheduled to follow at 3 p.m. Follow the crew on Twitter for practice updates and other notes throughout the week.