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2009 Texas vs. Nation: Wednesday
By Chad Reuter, NFLDraftScout.com, distributed by The Sports Xchange

EL PASO, TEXAS -- By the time Saturday rolls around, the two sides in the Texas vs. the Nation all-star game are very familiar with one another. This is the one postseason prospect showcase that pairs the teams during on-field practices before the game is played.

For those unfamiliar with the rosters entering Saturday's game, keep an eye on the 15 players below, ranked in the order in which they could come off the draft board in April.

Asterisks denote players invited to the National Scouting Combine in Indianapolis in February. A few more players might receive late invites, as room opened up when the number of declaring underclassmen was lower than expected.





--*CB Chris Owens (San Jose State, 5-10, 182): Scouts were buzzing about Owens as possibly the highest-rated prospect on the field. Some teams won't invest a high pick in a smallish corner, but a team will value the playmaking ability, fluid hips and short memory he demonstrated in El Paso.

--OLB Lee Robinson (Alcorn State, 6-2, 249): He could challenge Owens as the top pick from this game because he's a physical specimen, and he can really play. Scouts value a guy like Robinson who can hold up a pulling guard in space but run with backs in coverage down the sideline.

--*OT Cornelius Lewis (Tennessee State, 6-4, 324): In today's one-on-ones, Lewis was unbeatable. The Florida State transfer moved his feet and extended his arms to prevent ends from getting anywhere near the quarterback. Although he could be moved inside, Lewis appears most comfortable at the left tackle spot.

--ILB Frantz Joseph (Florida Atlantic, 6-2, 243): Whether in pads or just shells, Joseph made his presence felt in the box. He showed the strength necessary to get off of blocks and the awareness in zone to prevent running backs and tight ends from making yardage after the catch.

--OG T.J. Lang (Eastern Michigan, 6-4, 312): He lined up at tackle, guard and center during the week and won almost every battle. Lang locks up his man, consistently anchoring to prevent the bull rush.

--*OT Joel Bell (Furman, 6-7, 312): It's hard to ignore Bell's physically imposing frame. Defensive linemen found it difficult to get around his wide body and long arms, and his straight-line speed is obvious as he gets downfield to block. He'll be among the fastest tackles at the Combine.

--*OT Garrett Reynolds (North Carolina, 6-8, 310): Although he could use more strength throughout his frame, Reynolds still manages to keep defensive ends at bay by moving his feet, playing with a wide base and continually working his hands into his man's jersey.

--DT Nader Abdallah (Ohio State, 6-4, 295): Clearly the best defensive lineman in El Paso this week, he was unblockable at times. He lacks the athleticism of the elite prospects at his position, but Ohio State has coached him up to play strong at the point of attack and use his hands to discard leaning guards and centers.

--FB Conredge Collins (Pittsburgh, 6-0, 227): Versatility is a major asset for today's NFL fullback. Collins displayed his ability to take his target out of the play, snare passes in the flat and even carry the mail. Those skills could make him a long-time starter.

--*WR Jordan Norwood (Penn State, 5-10, 174): An underappreciated receiver, Norwood looked like a BCS-caliber talent, using his suddenness in and out of routes and soft hands to improve his stock going into the Combine.

--*TE Ryan Purvis (Boston College, 6-4, 255): A move-the-chains tight end with reliable hands and a willingness to block on the line. He looked more like the guy he was as a junior -- when his quarterback was Matt Ryan -- in practices this week.

--*RB Bernard Scott (Abilene Christian, 5-11, 199): Scouts would like to see another 10-15 pounds on his frame, but his quick feet and vision allow him to weave in and out of traffic like a Porsche on the 405.

--*QB Curtis Painter (Purdue, 6-3, 222): Considering his high profile over the past three seasons, Painter should be the top quarterback coming out of this game. His arm strength is clearly the best of the group, and his accuracy -- while not great -- was also the most consistent. This year's quarterback class probably will be weak enough to keep Painter off the free-agent market.

--DE Pierre Walters (Eastern Illinois, 6-4, 269): Flashed pass rush off the edge and his size, occasionally violent hands and strength at the point gives NFL defensive coaches a good foundation for a developmental project.

--WR Dudley Guice (Northwestern State, 6-2, 213): Not the fastest guy on the field, but his fluid running, vertical in the red zone and good hands made scouts take a second, third and even fourth look. Dominique Edison (Stephen F. Austin) would have likely made this list if he had not suffered a shoulder injury after his dominant Monday practice.



Related links:

* 2009 Texas vs Nation: Tuesday

* 2009 Texas vs Nation: Monday

* 2009 Texas vs Nation Measurements, Excel Spreadsheet: Height, Weight, Hand, Arm

* Texas vs Nation Rosters




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