Bowl season is just another piece of the scouting puzzle, but it can be bigger for some prospects than it is for others. Why? For starters, the layoff provides additional time for bodies to heal and for the cerebral players to dissect trends on film. Secondly, a bowl game is the final opportunity for a 2008 draft prospect to impress NFL scouts while still in his comfort zone. Sure, all-star games, interviews and an assortment of workouts are all proving grounds. But never again will he experience live game action while playing in a familiar scheme, for familiar coaches, surrounded by familiar collegiate teammates.
With that in mind, here's a breakdown (in order of bowl date) of the 10 prospects I will be watching a little closer during bowl season.
Early Doucet, WR, LSU
Plays Ohio State in the BCS Championship Game on Jan. 7
Doucet is no longer a lock to be taken in the first round. A groin injury robbed him of four games in the middle of the season and he has been mostly solid since returning with only a couple big-play moments sprinkled in. The speedster will need to run crisp routes and gain most of his yards after the catch versus a Buckeyes defense that spends most its time in zone coverage. Making CB Malcolm Jenkins miss a couple times in space wouldn't hurt Doucet's cause either.