Congratulations to SouthTexasTitan for coming up with the new name for this series. This is where I post my thoughts about the draft class position by position and take all those burning questions that everyone has as well. This week's position is the wide receiver class and it's a very good one. The receiver class is so deep that a solid starter could be found well into the fourth and fifth rounds.
1. Mike Evans Texas A&M
- Evans is the top receiver on the board thanks to his physical talent and a very good year being Johnny Manziel's top target. He dominated Alabama and made the vaunted Crimson Tide secondary look like a bunch of high school defensive backs. Who is the guy that makes all the insane circus catches from all those crazy looking Manziel passes? Evans. He possesses good hands along with body control and is a potential number one type of receiver. The size (6'4 230) makes him an obvious red zone target. Would I draft him with the 11th pick? Yes. A receiver trio that features Evans, Kendall Wright, and Justin Hunter would instantly become the best young receiver corps in the NFL. More weapons for whoever ends up being the QB on this team to throw to.
2. Sammy Watkins Clemson
- Watkins is a dynamic and explosive weapon that can score on any play. He frequently torched opposing secondaries with big plays. He's basically what Percy Harvin and Mike Wallace dream of being but faster. Clemson used him a lot as the gadget receiver who ran sweeps and tosses out of the backfield. A playmaker that has a deadly first step and can take the top off the defense in one play. Watkins also is an above average blocker and route runner. Would I take him 11th? Yes. It's not even a question. Had an epic close to his Clemson career. Let's just say that the Ohio State defensive backs got really familiar watching Watkins and the number 2 flash by.
3. Odell Beckham, Jr LSU
- While not as explosive as Watkins, Beckham is a special talent in his own right. He's a big play specialist that could be an awesome slot receiver and return man. I do have several questions, namely how will he fare without big armed Zach Mettenberger and fellow receiver Jarvis Landry to take the heat off? Would I take him 11th? No but I would consider it if the Titans moved down into the 15-18 range. He certainly has the athletic bloodlines to be a great athlete as father, ODB Sr was a Tiger running back while mom ran track for the Tigers.
4. Allen Robinson Penn State
- A big physical receiver that knows how to run all the routes. Really came onto the scene when now Texans HC Bill O'Brien took over the "controversial" Penn State program. He won't wow you with his speed but the other facets to his game makes up for it. The speed question was answered recently (yesterday) at PSU's pro day when he posted a solid 4.5 40. I liken his game to a younger Nate Washington or a Hines Ward if you will. He would be an interesting prospect to think about in the second round.
5. Marqise Lee USC
- A precipitous fall for one of the best players in the country coming into 2013. The 2013 season was a struggle for Lee as USC suffered from horrid QB play and a knee injury didn't help matters, either. Lee doesn't have ideal measurables for a receiver but he played bigger than his frame much like former Panther turned Raven Steve Smith has done. While not in the class of Watkins or even Beckham (speed wise), Lee is a pretty good burner himself. My question is, can he shed the stigma of good Trojans receivers turned into below average pros? If 2011-12 Lee returns, then he has a chance to make something of himself in the league.
Best of the Rest
6. Jarvis Landry LSU
7. Brandin Cooks Oregon State
8. Davante Adams Fresno State
9. Jordan Matthews Vanderbilt
10. Kelvin Benjamin Florida State
11. Jared Abbrederis Wisconsin
12. Josh Huff Oregon