As a follow up to my previous post on the CB Prospects for the 2014 draft, I've given an overview of some of the top WR prospects in the 2014 draft. This is a DEEP WR draft and I know I've left some people out, but obviously, you should feel free to bring them up in the comments. Obviously stocks will go up and down in the pre-draft process, but as of right now, all of these guys are slated to go in the first three rounds.
As a quick aside, I switched to CBSSports for heights and weights because I noticed ESPN was not consistent.
Sammy Watkins has been a big time prospect and potential first round pick since his freshman year. He had a bit of a down year last year, but has burst back on to the scene this year. Watkins is a big and fast receiver who would come in and be an immediate deep threat. He’s explosive, and all the potential is there. All he needs to do is improve his route running slightly and get stronger to be an all around threat.
Texas A&M Aggies
As a prospect, Mike Evans reminds me a lot of Alshon Jeffery. He’s massive, knows how to use his frame, and is an excellent leaper. I should emphasize this point, because a lot of big receivers don’t take advantage of their gifts. Evans is everything you’d expect out of a guy his size – a big strong target and a great run blocker at the WR position. He’s not the quickest or the fastest guy on the field, but he uses his good route running technique to create separation.
Lee was one of the best players in college football last year. This year he’s struggled with bad QB play and injury, but he has a lot to offer. He’s everything you want in terms of his athleticism, he’s quick, fast and can jump. He’s probably the best WR is space/with the ball in his hands in the draft. He is prone to the occasional miscommunication with his QB, resulting in interceptions. Additionally, despite his tools, he isn’t the best deep threat. He reminds me a lot of Victor Cruz.
Fresno State Bulldogs
Adams is an interesting case. His film indicates that he’s a beast. He’s got size, speed, quickness and leaping ability in spades. It looks like he could come in and be a deep threat and red zone option right away. That said, he needs to work on his ability to get separation and it’s worrying that he has played again relative inferior competition.
A few Jordan Matthews intangibles – He’s Jerry Rice’s cousin and when it’s all said and done, he’ll hold the records for career receptions and receiving yardage in the SEC. He consistently performs despite the best defenses in college football keying in on him. Matthews is not the quickest or the fastest guy, but he runs great routes, is strong/tough going over the middle, and will fight for yards after the catch. He probably won’t time very well in the combine, but it a lot of ways, he reminds me of Hakeem Nicks coming out.
Penn State Nittany Lions
Robinson is another big receiver who gives you a lot of what you expect out of a guy his size. He’s not that fast downfield, but he’s a fantastic route runner, good leaper and he consistently uses his size well. He’s a great run blocker and a reliable catcher as well. Just don’t expect him to burn defensive backs in a footrace.
Oregon State Beavers
Brandin Cooks is a small but tough and athletic WR. He’s fast and quick, but that speed displays itself more in the short and intermediate game than in deep passes. He’ll excel in a system where he gets moved around and the coaches try to get him the ball in space. He’s like a way better Jerrel Jernigan.
Landry is one of two great WR prospects on the Tigers. Landry has the potential to be a very good all-around receiver. In terms of the passing game, he doesn’t really have any glaring flaws. He’s athletic, a good route runner, and he catches the ball well. He isn’t the home run threat that Beckham is, but he’s the more physical WR and he can create more in traffic/after the catch. Despite being so physical in the passing game, he is an abysmally bad run blocker.
Richardson is another interesting case. He’s tall and very fast. He has all of the tools to succeed. He also game back from an ACL tear to have a really good season this year. He’s got all the tools, but if he wants to succeed in the NFL, he needs to put on a lot of muscle (without sacrificing speed) and show he can beat the press.
ODELL BECKHAM JR.
Home run threat. Odell Beckham is just as good, if not better than Marquise Lee in space. He’s not as well built/physical, but he’s elite with the ball in his hands. He’s a ready-made deep threat. Additionally, he’d be an elite returner as well.