Washington Eye On NFL Draft: Senior Bowl Standouts, Day 1

The path to the draft officially starts about two weeks after the last NFL Draft, but kicked up a big-time notch this week at the Senior Bowl in Mobile.
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ASHBURN, Va. -- The Senior Bowl is a crown jewel of the NFL offseason, even though it is the first event of the normal calendar and sandwiched in between the conference championship games and the Super Bowl. 

Make no mistake, the path to the draft started long ago. But this is a major access road to Cleveland (site of 2021 NFL Draft) ... where dreams will come true. For players. And for franchises likes the Washington Football Team.

Practices started on Tuesday for both the American and National squads, led by the Miami Dolphins and Carolina Panthers coaching staffs. 

Here are some of the standouts from reporters and scouting analysts on the ground in Mobile. 

Shi Smith out of South Carolina seemed to be a standout in many eyes from Tuesday. It's just one session but Washington does need more help at receiver and might not be able to get the veteran quarterback stud they want, sign Brandon Scherff and get a big-time receiver like a Chris Godwin or Allen Robinson. 

WATCH Smith on Tuesday: 

David Harrison from the "Locked on Bucs" podcast is in Mobile, Alabama this week and joined us on Wednesday morning with his thoughts on Smith. 

A couple of other items that jumped out to those on the scene in Mobile that could intrigue the WFT:

D'Wayne Eskridge, another receiver looked dynamite in many reports. 

D'Ante Smith from ECU, an athletic offensive tackle stood out to Daniel Jeremiah, the lead draft analyst from NFL Network and a former NFL scout. 

A couple of Notre Dame offensive linemen also opened some eyes from their fine college careers and what they were doing after practice. ... Robert Hainsey and the massive Aaron Banks. 

A quarterback who seemed to have a good day was Jamie Newman from Wake Forest, thought to be a mid-round prospect ... while Kellen Mond from Texas A&M seemed to struggle getting rid of the ball quickly, per multiple observers. 

On defense: Watch this physicality by Washington defensive back Keith Taylor, who at 6'3" might have a little Richard Sherman in him. 

Clearly, a lot of talent can be infused into the Washington Football Team and the NFL over the next couple of months. This is only a start. ... but it's a crown-jewel of a start.

CONTINUE READING: Can Washington Trade Just 2nd-Round Picks For Stafford?