The Senior Bowl is more than just a Saturday afternoon football game between two college all-star teams in a 72-year old stadium in south Alabama. The real meat of the event happens in the days leading up to the game.
As Chris Burke of The Athletic thoroughly detailed in his latest piece, the Cincinnati Bengals will essentially have an extra week to evaluate players of which most will end up at the scouting combine a month later.
In a nutshell, here’s how the week will play out:
Sunday — majority of players arrive, first time unofficially meeting with NFL teams, undergo physicals.
Monday — playbooks are dispensed to players, first team meetings take place.
Tuesday — weigh ins, media day, first day of practice. The Bengals and the South roster will take the field first in the afternoon.
Wednesday — second round of team meetings in the morning, followed by the second day of practice. Coaches become more intimately aware of their players.
Thursday — final day of practice, more team meetings.
Friday — community day! Players visit hospitals or schools on their first day off of the week and then sign autographs at a fan event later. With one day before the game, coaches may try to meet with players one more time.
Saturday — finally game day. The outcome ultimately doesn’t matter as both playbooks are very vanilla, but scouts and general managers stick around to see how the practices translated onto the field.
We’ll learn more about the players in the practices, but Zac Taylor and his staff will get an up close opportunity to evaluate the top seniors in the NFL Draft.