2015 East-West Shrine Game Rewind…

Ourlads’ GM Dan Shonka with 2016 Shrine Game Most Outstanding Player Vernon Adams Jr.

With the 91st East West Shrine All-Star Game in the books, we researched the 2015 participants to see how they have contributed on Sundays. The 2014 crew placed 73 players on 53-man rosters or practice squads. Nineteen players were undrafted free agents and landed on 53-man rosters. The 2015 class raised the bar for the 2016 class, a group by all reports from the scouts evaluating practices said this year’s could be one of the best ever.

The facts: David Andrews, former Georgia Bulldog, started 14 games at center for New England in 2015. Andrews was but one of 10 Shrine game players who made 53-man rosters but were undrafted and not invited to the Combine. The Patriots also claimed corner Justin Coleman (Tennessee) off the Seattle practice squad. Coleman started two games during the playoff run, played in ten games, and collected 21 tackles. He also defended five passes. The former Volunteer was not drafted nor did he get a Combine invite which was shocking because of his strong senior year in Knoxville. What we said about him after the Shrine game week where he excelled: “A nickel/slot type defender with fluid hips and quick feet. Solid technique as a press corner on the outside. Quick to change direction.” The wide receivers in practice said he was the best corner they faced and was the most competitive. Go figure.

Other Shrine game alums who made 53-man rosters and were non-Combine invites include: Xavier Williams DT (Arizona), AJ Tarpley LB (Buffalo), Khari Lee TE (Chicago) who started seven games, Zach Vigil LB (Miami) played in 16 games starting two and collected 18 tackles, Taylor Heinicke QB (Minnesota) passed for 516 yards in the pre-season, 5th best in the league and completed 69.5% of his passes, Ron Martin S (New York Jets), Dylan Thompson QB (San Francisco), and Kasen Williams WR (Seattle).

Forty-one players were drafted and 78 drew NFL paychecks in 2015.

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