Only two NFL teams have a game to prepare for right now, and 30 others are working to build up their team in hopes of making it to the Super Bowl next season.
The NFL draft plays a big part of that, and the Senior Bowl often features many of the draft's top prospects. The annual all-star game featuring some of college football's best has been taking place in Mobile, Alabama this week, and hundreds of NFL coaches, scouts, executives and even owners have made their way to Mobile to get an up-close look at some of this year's crop of draft talent. After a week of measurements, interviews, practices and learning about the draft process, players will get to face each other Saturday when the North and South squads face off in the 2016 Senior Bowl Game.
Some of the today's biggest NFL stars played in the Senior Bowl. Nearly every season, at least 30 percent of players in the NFL started their scouting journey and road to pro football in Mobile, per the game's official website. Current NFL stars who've played in the game include Geno Atkins, Jimmy Graham, Von Miller, DeMarcus Ware, Clay Matthews and Russell Wilson.
While the draft process is long and tedious, a good showing at the Senior Bowl can do wonders for a player's draft stock. The big performer this week has been Ohio State Buckeyes receiver Braxton Miller, who has looked like a natural play-maker as a pass-catcher, despite spending most of his career at quarterback.
Other players who have stood out this week include Michigan State center Jack Allen, LSU linebacker Deion Jones and Georgia wide receiver Malcolm Mitchell. Those are some names I would watch out for in terms of who the Bengals could be interested in. Those are some guys who will go on Day 2 or 3 who could fill needs for Cincinnati, especially Allen. The Bengals need to at least bring in some competition for Russell Bodine this offseason, and Allen is someone they can get without spending a high pick.
Here is everything you'll need to watch and follow the game.
2016 Senior Bowl Game
Date: Saturday, January 30, 2016
Time: 2:30 PM EST
Where: Ladd-Peebles Stadium, Mobile, Alabama
TV Channel: NFL Network
Mobile: NFL Mobile App
Online Streaming: NFL Network Online
North Team Roster
North Coaching Staff: Dallas Cowboys
South Team Roster
South Coaching Staff: Jacksonville Jaguars