Senior Bowl notebook: Denzel Mims, Adam Trautman earn hype

NCAA Football, NFL Draft

A pair of pass-catchers caught plenty of attention on Wednesday at the Senior Bowl, as Denzel Mims and Adam Trautman showcased their talents.

MOBILE — Denzel Mims is gaining traction.

In a star-studded class of rookie receivers headlined by Oklahoma’s CeeDee Lamb and Alabama’s Jerry Jeudy, Mims has been relegated to an afterthought in most mock drafts. A star in Waco for the last four seasons, the Baylor Bears standout has a pair of 1,000-yard campaigns to his name along with 26 touchdown grabs over the past three years. Still, Mims has mostly been seen as a borderline Day 2 pick.

The script is beginning to change in Mobile.

At Wednesday’s practice at Ladd-Peebles Stadium, the buzz in both the stands and around the field largely centered around Mims. At 6-foot-2 and 206 pounds, Mims showed the ability to separate with good fluidity at the line of scrimmage in drills before getting up the field with quickness. While his speed won’t be confused with Lamb’s, Mims has enough to eat grass and provide a big-bodied target.

It’s only a few days of practice. Mims could go quiet Thursday and through the weekend, stunting some of the momentum he’s built. Or, he could keep building and be a riser throughout February, March and April. Regardless, by causing a stir, he’ll force teams to dig deeper on his tape and remember the name as we continue through the draft process. That’s a huge win this time of year.

Trautman proving an intriguing prospect

Who is Adam Trautman?

That will likely be the popular refrain from most fans and many analysts as they search his name on Google. To save you the time, Trautman is a 6-foot-5, 251-pound tight end out of Dayton, an FCS football school that hasn’t produced much NFL talent over the years.

However, the youngster is seen as a solid blocker who can provide a threat in the passing game.

Trautman hauled in 70 receptions for 916 yards and 14 touchdowns for the Flyers as a senior.  While the competition was inferior, the numbers speak to a kid with the ability to catch the ball and win in small areas such as the red zone.

On Wednesday during the North squad’s practice, Trautman won a majority of his one-on-one routes, including a beauty against Michigan Wolverines safety Josh Matellus. The route-running gene is certainly present.

While Trautman won’t go off the board anywhere near the first round, he should be a Day 3 pick if his testing and interviews hold up. The NFL is continuing to trend towards more two-tight end sets, especially with players who are a dual threat.

Herbert, Love and not much else

The quarterbacks are always the centerpiece of conversation around draft time, and this year is no different. In Mobile, Justin Herbert and Jordan Love have been bandied about plenty. So far, both have shown well, only solidifying the notion of Herbert as a top-10 pick and Love fighting for the back half of the first round.

After those two, though, the depth chart falls off considerably. Shea Patterson of Michigan has been below-average while Washington State’s Anthony Gordon has some nice traits but also needs to bulk up among other things. Jalen Hurts hasn’t lowered his stock, but it’s clear he is raw. A team drafting Hurts is looking at a great athlete who needs significant refinement.

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