As practice for the 2013 East-West Shrine Game hits Wednesday, time remains for players who are either trying to continue impressive weeks so far or are seeking to make their presence better known as Saturday's game at Tropicana Field nears.
Pittsburgh Panthers running back Ray Graham, ranked 18th overall in Dan Kadar of SB Nation's running back rankings for the 2013 NFL Draft, is one such player looking to continue drawing positive attention. In his report from Tuesday morning's practice, SB Nation's Alfie Crow thinks Graham's value could be rising, and CBSSports.com's Dane Brugler said Graham seemed to be "the quickest player" during the East's practice session.
Arizona Wildcats quarterback Matt Scott caught Crow's eye in the West's afternoon practice, as he notes that Scott is a potentially-dangerous option threat with a strong arm that a NFL team might consider taking a chance on later in the draft:
With more teams looking to run read-option and pistol formations in their offense, Scott could be an interesting player in the late rounds for a team looking to groom a quarterback for that.
Scott is the 16th-best quarterback prospect in Kadar's draft rankings.
Also worth following at the quarterback position is Colby Cameron of the Louisiana Tech Bulldogs. In 2012, his senior year at Louisiana Tech, Cameron threw for 4,147 yards, 31 touchdowns and only five interceptions, leading the Bulldogs to a 9-3 overall record.
Defensively, linebacker Keith Pough of the Howard University Bison also made an impression during the West's afternoon session. With good size and a propensity for constant chatter on the field, Pough left Crow believing he could be a solid all-around 'backer in the NFL:
I wasn't expecting him to move as well as he did in space, but he looks like a player that could find a role as a strongside linebacker in 4-3 defense. Pough didn't look uncomfortable in coverage and ran downfield well with tight ends.
The wide receiver ranks have a slew of names worth watching on Wednesday and beyond. Marcus Davis caught 51 passes for 953 yards and five touchdowns for the Virginia Tech Hokies in 2012, and comes in at No. 21 on Kadar's wide receiver rankings.
Jasper Collins of Mount Union, the 2012 NCAA Division III national champions, could be one to watch due to his eye-popping numbers last season with the Purple Raiders. Collins had 92 receptions for 1,694 yards and a whopping 22 touchdowns, as he was also named an All-American. Collins will be the only player representing Division III in the Shrine Game this year.
A player who could certainly benefit from a strong showing on a big stage (with solid quarterback play) is Auburn Tigers wide receiver Emory Blake. Playing with one of the most anemic passing offenses of the 2012 season, Blake caught 50 passes -- far and away the most for the Tigers -- for 789 yards and three touchdowns. Rated No. 28 on Kadar's draft rankings, Blake could use the Shrine Game as an opportunity to show what he can accomplish with a competent offense -- namely, a quarterback -- around him.
Also looking to make an impression, though possibly not at his collegiate position, is Army quarterback Trent Steelman. Steelman's inclusion in the 2013 Shrine Game marks the 12th consecutive year that the game has featured a player from Army. As Crow writes here, Steelman's dual-threat capability at quarterback has lead him to being listed as a wide receiver on the team roster, as he will probably play that along with running back, though not quarterback, in his quest to impress a team from the NFL in the Shrine Game.
Practice for the East team runs from 9:40 a.m. - 11:40 a.m. ET on Wednesday, followed by the West team taking the field from 2:40 p.m. - 4:40 p.m.