MOBILE, Ala. — They’re the good hands people.
Receivers Romeo Doubs and Christian Watson were two players who shined during Wednesday’s wet and windy Senior Bowl practices at Hancock Whitney Stadium.
The Patriots, who could be in the market for receiver depth, have met with both players as they continue to build their draft board.
“The meeting was great. I loved meeting with the Patriots,” said Doubs, who starred at Nevada the last four years. “I was able to show off my personality and who I am to them both as a young man and a football player. So, it was awesome.’’
Watson had similar positive thoughts after meeting with New England’s representatives.
“It was good. It was really good,” said Watson, who recently won the FCS national championship with North Dakota State. “Every team obviously wants to pick your brain and kind of see what you’re about, so every meeting I’ve had so far has been good.”
Though he grew up a Steelers fan, Watson has kept an eye on the Patriots, and one player in particular.
“I followed Mac Jones in college. Obviously, he’s a prime-time quarterback,” Watson said.
The 6-foot-5-inch, 208-pound Watson can be an imposing figure for cornerbacks to match up against. He gets off the line quickly and flashes nice acceleration, getting to top speed in a flash.
“I’d say the combination of my speed and my size, the way I’m able to utilize my speed and my quickness to gain separation separates me from other receivers,” said Watson, who had 43 catches for 800 yards and 7 touchdowns this past season.
Watson, who said a goal is a 4.3 40-yard dash at the Combine next month, offers the kind of versatility New England covets in receivers.
He’s been used as a perimeter receiver, in the slot, and even in the backfield. As a bonus, Watson can return kicks.
At 6-2, 200 pounds, Doubs also offers a nice size, speed combination. He’s been used primarily as a boundary receiver, but he’s working on expanding his route tree.
“I’m really confident in my deep back game, [but] I understand that being a complete receiver, you must work on everything, working on the technique and route running, releases off the line and being able to track footballs with hand-eye coordination,” Doubs said.
He added that “learning to be patient” is the key to developing proficiency as a slot weapon.
Doubs’s college quarterback, Carson Strong, is also here, and the two have enjoyed continuing the chemistry they’ve built over the last four seasons. Doubs acknowledged he’s biased, but he thinks Strong should be the first quarterback off the board in April’s draft.
“His leadership is phenomenal. It’s amazing. Watching him grow as a quarterback has been awesome. Whenever things were a little off, he was a very great leader and he made sure the entire team was good,” said Doubs.
Some other observations from Day 2:
▪ Scouts from the NFL teams took shelter from the rain, so it was tough to tell who from the Patriots was in attendance.
▪ The defensive linemen dominated the individual trench drills and the conditions had a lot to do with it. The offensive linemen had trouble backpedaling on the slick turf, making it hard to anchor and hold up against the oncoming defenders.
▪ Boston College’s Zion Johnson, one of the top-rated guards in this year’s draft, stayed after the early practice to work on his center skills, including direct snaps and long snaps.
▪ UConn’s Travis Jones showed a nifty swim move in beating a double team during individual drills. He’s a strong dude.
▪ Things got heated between Kansas edge rusher Kyron Johnson and Northern Iowa tackle Trevor Penning. Johnson pushed Penning back a good 10 yards and Penning responded with a stiff arm after the play and Johnson went right back at him. It drew a huge reaction from teammates.
▪ The American team performed its walkthrough portion of practice without helmets. One coach in the stands suggested it was to let the coaches on the field see the players’ eyes and where they were looking during plays. Another quipped that it was just to toughen them up during the steady rain.
▪ Malik Willis continues to shine. The Liberty quarterback has an impressive release and arm strength. A bit undersized at 6-1, 215 pounds, he more than makes up for that with quickness and athleticism. Willis revealed the Saints are one of the team’s he’s met with.
▪ Song of the day: “Party Like A Rockstar” by the Shop Boyz.
▪ Another day of heavy rain with strong thunderstorms and possible tornado watches is forecast for Thursday’s final day of practices.