I've found the ESPN.com Senior Bowl blog to be a nice resource for keeping up with the developments in Mobile, Ala, this week. The North team, coached by the Detroit Lions' staff, has already wrapped up its practice and the Tim Tebow team (South) is getting ready to take the field. Here's what our guys from Scouts Inc. had to say about an offensive lineman from Idaho:
"Idaho's Mike Iupati is clearly the best offensive lineman on the North roster. He is quick, powerful, balanced and nasty. He struggled when moved to tackle and might fit best at guard in the NFL, but Iupati is good enough to consider in the late first round."
I've been on the phone with a longtime scout from the AFC South this afternoon. After reading about Florida quarterback Tim Tebow's struggles on Day 1, I wanted to get the scout's take:
"I know he dropped a couple from center, but that's not a big deal to me," said the scout. "He's got time to figure that out. He's a good football player, so teams will have to figure out how to use him. I think he'll run a 4.6 or better at the combine, so his speed won't be an issue. We'll look at him first as a quarterback, but you have to also think about how he would look as a running back or a tight end. I even think he might be able to play linebacker."
That would cause quite a stir this week if Dolphins head coach Tony Sparano asks Tebow to line up with the linebackers. But that's not going to happen. This is the first day the players are in full pads, so we should have a more accurate read on Tebow by this evening. I know players such as Peyton Manning and Ryan Leaf were scrutinized coming out of college, but I'm not sure we've ever seen a player who will spark such wildly different opinions as Tebow.
As I told you earlier today, former Redskins/Texans general manager Charley Casserly, now with CBS, told the Miami Herald that two teams he'd spoken with said that Tebow was a first-rounder. But as I start to visit with scouts across the league, I think it's more likely that Tebow will go in the second or third round.
By the way, if Iupati is truly a late first-round prospect, that's someone the Cowboys could target at No. 27. I'm in touch with the Cowboys' scouting party in Mobile, so I'll pass along anything I hear. Owner Jerry Jones said Monday that he doesn't expect to move off that No. 27 pick.