2011 NFL Draft: Will Insight Bowl Performance Affect Mizzou's Blaine Gabbert, Aldon Smith?

Two of the most high-profile names on the Missouri Tigers roster that will contemplate jumping to the 2011 NFL draft are QB Blaine Gabbert and DE Aldon Smith. For Gabbert, the reasons are obvious including his size, accuracy and experience. For Smith, his athleticism and versatility is among his top attributes.

As we often see, a bowl game can help a player make up his mind on whether to go pro or not. A solid performance and you could catapult yourself into the NFL draft talk, such as JaMarcus Russell's Sugar Bowl performance a few years ago.

Would a big game by Gabbert and/or Smith help them make the decision to go pro? It's hard to say that it won't because momentum is a factor here. Some talent evaluators on the fence about both players may see a big performance from them in the Insight Bowl that pushes them over the edge into believing they can succeed at the next level. Likewise, a bad game can push them down the list.

Teams like to see how players will perform when the spotlight is on them. That'll be the case Tuesday evening when ESPN airs the Insight Bowl between Mizzou and Iowa.

Who knows what a big game would do for each of them. They'll need to make their decision on early-entry by the middle of January.

Trending Discussions

X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join SB Nation Kansas City

You must be a member of SB Nation Kansas City to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Kansas City. You should read them.

Join SB Nation Kansas City

You must be a member of SB Nation Kansas City to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at SB Nation Kansas City. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.