2015 Senior Bowl: Player of the Week

Washington’s Danny Shelton was the best player in Mobile, Alabama this week

He was the top-ranked player by many coming into Senior Bowl week, and Washington defensive lineman Danny Shelton did nothing to dissuade that opinion on the practice field in Mobile, Alabama.

"Danny Shelton is probably the highest rated guy here," NFL Network's Charles Davis said. "People will have a hard time moving him in nine-on-seven and the run game."

Davis was right. People had a really hard time trying to move Shelton anywhere.

At 6-foot-1 and 343 pounds, Shelton displayed the elite combination of size, strength and quickness that's landed him as the No. 7 overall player in the upcoming draft by CBSsports.com.

For Shelton, the decision to come to the Senior Bowl was an easy one despite already being considered one of the best players in the upcoming draft.

"It was a quick decision," Shelton said. "I've always wanted to be in this and to think that I'm here now is exciting. I've always wanted to have this opportunity to play against some of the best in the country, to play under some of the best coaches, to learn a new coaching style and just show that I can adjust easily."

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Shelton finished his senior season at Washington with 93 tackles, which included 16.5 for loss and nine sacks. He also had five fumble recoveries, which led the nation.

In addition to those impressive statistics, he was the only player in the nation named a first-team All-American and a first-team Academic All-American.

Shelton is of Polynesian descent, and so it shouldn't come as any surprise as to which player in the NFL he looks up to the most.

"I've always looked up to Haloti Ngata and so, I've always modeled my game after him," Shelton said. "As far as just being a physical body, being a big body, taking up blocks and trying to do some of his pas-rush moves. He's just a super strong dude.

"He's also a great role model for all Polynesians."

After a junior season that saw him finished with just 59 tackles and two sacks, Shelton felt like he was a better player than that and used it as motivation.

"Looking back at my junior season and realizing that I didn't get to play to the best of my ability," Shelton said. "Receiving the evaluation from the NFL saying I'm a fourth [rounder] to undrafted [free agent], these are all things I look to motivate myself."

Photos of Washington's DL Danny Shelton

Before he was a standout performer at the Senior Bowl, Shelton was the youngest of four brothers. His eldest brother, Shennon, was shot to death in front of him back in 2011, when Shelton was a freshman at Washington (Read whole story here).

"This past season, I had this whole new mentality in trying to be positive throughout every situation in my life and trying to simplify my life," Shelton said. "It's really helped with this past season and I'm continuing the new change."

He continued.

"I remember growing up and trying to compete against my older brothers," Shelton said. "I've always had that mentality that when I grow up, I'm going to be better than you guys. I feel like I've always been challenged by adversity. Even in high school, that was when I realized that I could be an elite player, I could make it in college and after college, maybe go to the NFL." After his performance this week in Mobile, Shelton has shown not only his brothers, but also the football-watching world that he's a player to watch out for as he begins his NFL career.

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