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Thor Nystrom’s 2024 NFL Draft Prospect Rankings: Wide Receivers

Thor Nystrom’s 2024 NFL Draft Prospect Rankings: Wide Receivers

The 2024 NFL Draft is full of talent at the wide receiver position. Here are my top 32 wide receivers from this year’s draft. We’re going to make this article free to read, but you can upgrade to read all of my 2024 NFL Draft prospect rankings articles.

2024 NFL Draft Guide

NFL Draft Wide Receiver Rankings

1. Marvin Harrison Jr. | Ohio State
6032/209 | RAS: N/A
Comp: A.J. Green

Marvin Harrison Sr. made the Hall of Fame as a sub-180-pound receiver. He had one path – and one path only – to reach Canton: Become a route-running virtuoso. So that’s what he did.

Marvin Sr. named his son Marvin Jr., whose adolescence was an education in dad’s wide-receiver-book-of-secrets knowledge. But as Marvin Jr. matured, he grew into a physical package his father could only dream about – tall, well-built, long-armed… with track speed. The prototype.

Receiving prospects that are this physically talented have a tendency to be raw at some of the game’s finer points when they enter the NFL. For the same reason dominant youth fireballers often need to learn off-speed pitches when they enter minor league baseball: They didn’t need more than a fastball to dominate youth competition.

But Marvin Jr. didn’t really have a choice in that matter, did he? Sixteen years after his father retired from the NFL, Marvin Jr. enters the pros as a rare commodity, indeed: A refined prodigy. He looks like NFL scouts collectively built him in Madden, and he plays like he’s been getting tips from a Hall of Fame personal tutor since birth.

Start with the release package. Marvin Sr. had to learn to beat bigger, longer corners off the line. Because if he couldn’t dictate the terms of the dance, he couldn’t win. Harrison Jr. is sudden and precise with his footwork, with a new look every snap, making it difficult to stay square without overcompensating. And you aren’t impeding his progress unless you have a firm base under you with hands on him.

Harrison Jr. enters his route and quickly deciphers the coverage’s intentions. This area got a lot of work the past couple of years – the conventional coverage looks that he was getting early on as a sophomore quickly morphed into opposing defensive coordinators throwing the kitchen sink at him.

As he got into his third and final season, Harrison Jr. was seeing double-teams at a rate that – watching the Buckeyes live in the fall – I couldn’t remember seeing at the Power 5 level. But that’s anecdotal. Reception Perception’s Matt Harmon quantified it: Per Harmon’s charting, Harrison Jr. broke the previous double-team-rate record, while shattering the record for success rate when doubled. Basically, this was giving a young Tiger Woods progressively higher handicaps until they became astronomical only to watch him win every competition anyway. If that’s not telling, I don’t know what is.

Why did opposing coordinators begin doing this? Because Harrison Jr. was in the 100th percentile in PFF receiving grade against single-man coverage over the past two seasons. Leaving one corner on Harrison Jr. in man coverage was pushing him into a shark tank wearing a steak suit.

Keep in mind: Last year, Harrison Jr. did all this working with Kyle McCord, who was banished to Syracuse via the transfer portal after the season. For all his faults, McCord knew where his bread was buttered. It was in his statistical best interest to force targets MHJ’s way, disadvantageous or not.

Last year, Harrison Jr. had the highest target share – 33.3% – in college football. That’s not the crazy part. The crazy part is Harrison Jr.’s target share spiked to 40% against man coverage. Let me reiterate for the NFL defensive coordinators in our reading audience: You do not leave a man one-on-one against Marvin Harrison Jr. in man coverage.

Harrison Jr. throttles speed at will – his most impressive attribute as a route-runner. It’s very difficult to get a bead on his intentions because of this. He’s precise and calculated into the route break, and utterly violent out of them, exposing back to top speed quickly.

Harrison Jr. is a downfield killer – top five last year in both deep catches and deep yards – whose size/speed combination, body control and leaping ability, for me, as a lifelong Minnesota Vikings fan, could at times evoke a certain Super Freak receiver from my boyhood that I cannot ever see myself comping a prospect to. But you can’t really play off him due to Harrison Jr.’s ability to consistently throw open passing windows in the intermediate range.

Harrison has a huge catch radius, and he’s reliable with anything you can get near it, posting a strong 6.1% career drop rate over heavy volume at Ohio State. Reported to be maniacal with a modified jugs machine at home during his free time, the hand work shows.

My biggest nitpick about his game is he doesn’t really break tackles. It’s important to note, however, that this does not mean that he isn’t good after the catch. Harrison Jr. seamlessly transitions from receiver to runner and has very good in-the-moment spatial awareness. He piles up comparable YAC to top prospects more skilled at evading or breaking tackles because of this.

For instance, last year, Harrison Jr. had 44% and 54%, respectively, of the receiving yards after contact that Malik Nabers and Rome Odunze did. And yet Harrison Jr. had 0.8 more YAC/R than Odunze, and only 0.2 less than Nabers. Harrison Jr. isn’t flashy in this area – only effective.

Harrison Jr. skipped the draft process. I don’t care. I’ll go further: I would have advised him to do the exact same. His film speaks for itself, as does the rest of it. Harrison Jr. burst to the top of the nation’s best WR room and posted two enormous seasons before declaring for the NFL. He’s the prototype physically and athletically, with genetics and pedigree in spades. For receiver prospects, it’s rare to see floor/ceiling combinations this high.

2. Malik Nabers | LSU
5117/199 | RAS: 9.67
Comp: Odell Beckham Jr.

We think of defenders as the ones who attack. Nabers’ game flips that on its head. Nabers is the Nikola Tesla of receivers. He’s in complete control of inexhaustible, high-wattage electricity.

Nabers is a break-neck route-runner with legitimately freaky movement. He generates separation at will due to his ludicrous stop/start ability – he accelerates 0-to-60 in a snap and can stop on a dime – and the fact that he loses zero momentum when changing directions.

Nabers sets the table for his route-break filth by throttling tempo and movement patterns unpredictably, almost like a cat playing with a mouse. For different reasons than Harrison Jr., you cannot strand someone on an island with Nabers. In fact, last year, Nabers slightly bested Harrison Jr. in PFF receiving grade percentile against single-coverage.

Once Nabers has the ball in his hands, the defense is in a car chase with Mario Andretti. Nabers is faster than anyone you have, and he’s just as evasive. Nabers’ 30 missed tackles, 309 receiving yards after contact and 43 explosive plays all finished No. 2 last season. He was named First-team AP All-American, having put up 1,569 receiving yards and 14 TDs.

Despite Nabers’ size and obvious after-the-catch ability, LSU spoon-fed him very few freebie targets. The Tigers instead leveraged Nabers’ athleticism to attack defenses deeper down the field. Nabers is a downfield killer. He has the athleticism to free himself and the leaping acrobatic style downfield to win jump balls.

He’s even more scary in the intermediate sector. By the data, Nabers wins wide-open separation at a rate comparable to anyone in the past 10 receiving classes. Hit him on the hands and you immediately unlock that special after-the-catch electricity.

Nabers has extremely reliable hands. So reliable, in fact, that he posted the exact same stellar drop rate each of the last two seasons: 5.3%. I particularly appreciate the smoothness with which he’s able to spear off-target balls outside his frame and without wasting motion or losing momentum become a runner.

Nabers has elements of his game that are similar stylistically to three active LSU star receivers currently in the NFL: Odell Beckham Jr., Ja’Marr Chase and Justin Jefferson. My comp for him was Chase earlier in the process. But I felt Beckham was a closer encapsulation of the type of movement we are talking about. I wouldn’t argue with the use of any of that trio as his comp, however.

I only have two nitpicks with Nabers. He lacks play strength, something he can’t do anything about, and he always plays with his hands low. The latter is, many times, a strength – a delicious twist to the electric movement. It makes it extremely difficult to tell where Nabers is headed into a route break, and it also makes it more difficult to accurately gauge the speed at which he’s moving (because he doesn’t have the exaggerated arm swing of other speedsters).

However, this quirk can open up opportunities for defenders to jar him off the line in press when they’re lucky enough to get their hands on him. He has electric feet, but sometimes gets cute playing three-card monte off the line, opening up opportunities to get jarred and have his momentum stalled. A similar phenomenon can occur along the route if his man can stay close to him – jarring him with subtle contact.

Despite these minor concerns, Nabers is an elite prospect whose game is tailor-made for where the NFL is going. I’ve called him a “flying Ferrari” on the field – a Back to the Future step forward in the game’s speed-and-space evolution.

3. Rome Odunze | Washington
6027/212 | RAS: 9.91
Comp: Davante Adams

Odunze does not have Nabers’ electric movement skills, nor Harrison Jr.’s physical package/Hall of Fame education. But you stacked the trio’s traits across the spectrum, Odunze, while not finishing No. 1 in many categories, would be No. 3 in relatively few as well.

Odunze combines size, strength, physicality, speed, footwork, agility, hops, route-running know-how and ball skills to produce an answer for most situations. He profiles as an alpha boundary WR1 at the next level. On multiple teams rumored to be interested, that would occur on Day 1 (cough Giants cough).

Last season, Odunze was only deployed in the slot on 17.4% of his snaps, second-lowest of my top-15 WR. His 15.5 aDOT was third-highest. He was pressed off the line more than any receiver in this entire draft class.*

*(The reason for that has to do with the dirty little secret about his collegiate quarterback Michael Penix Jr.: Penix loved going to his first read – often Odunze – and defenses realized the only viable way to slow Washington’s offense was by disrupting Penix’s timing and pushing him off his spot).

But try as they might, opponents couldn’t impede Odunze. Reception Perception’s Matt Harmon called Odunze’s 80.0% success rate against press coverage the “most impressive mark” of Odunze’s charting profile.

Odunze has a dynamic release package, with precise footwork packages and bullish upper-body strength. He is not the most sudden changing directions at his breaks, but Odunze gives himself plenty of cushion into them by running routes at unorthodox tempos. The defender is never certain exactly where he’s headed and when he’ll make his move.

Odunze is also blessed with flash-bang acceleration out of those breaks, ensuring he will at least win the last stage of every transition. And because of Odunze’s speed – he was a star sprinter in high school – defensive backs must always guard against the possibility of Odunze hitting the downtown jets, which makes them think twice about jumping intermediate moves.

Odunze’s ball skills are truly special – to me, this is the most impressive aspect of his game. He’s a dog on the bone with the ball in the air. Last year, Odunze had a microscopic 3.2% drop rate on 140 targets (after posting a stellar 5.1% drop rate the year before). He has a preternatural feel for tracking, as though he is watching the ball’s flight on Google Glasses inside his helmet before he has actually turned his head.

Odunze was an incredible 20-for-27 in contested situations in 2023. Not only did he lead the class in contested catches, but Odunze also had the best contested catch rate of anyone in the double-digits. Odunze is so utterly comfortable in these situations – especially down the field – that he will sometimes appear to allow his man to get a bit closer with the ball in descent, perhaps to have a better feel for where exactly he is at the moment of truth for positioning purposes.

But Odunze also has a special skill at the catch point downfield to ensure he’s the only one who gets to make a legitimate play on the ball – he doesn’t put his hands up for the ball until the last possible moment, depriving defenders of the opportunity to compete with him for it.

Because of this honing device of his, Odunze is one of those guys who will immediately and drastically alter his plan to try to save poorly thrown balls. He’ll work back against the grain for underthrown balls, he’ll leap and extend for overthrows, he’ll pick low screamers clean before they hit the carpet and he’ll line his toes on the chalk to corral balls thrown too far up the sideline.

From the tape I watched this process, anecdotally, no receiver in this class was better at turning incompletions into completions than Odunze. He is a quarterback’s best friend who also led this class with 87 catches that ended in a first down or touchdown.

Odunze could have declared for last year’s draft. If he had, he would have been a first-rounder – likely somewhere in that 20-24 range where we saw four straight WRs come off the board. Instead, Odunze returned to school, where he made the leap to abject superstardom.

While Odunze may wind up WR3 in this class – it was a photo finish between him and Nabers for my WR2 designation – Odunze is a no-doubt top-10 pick. This version of Odunze easily would have been WR1 in last year’s class, and multiple others over the past decade.

4. Ladd McConkey | Georgia
5115/186 | RAS: 9.34
Comp: Jordan Addison

Ladd McConkey is the JJ McCarthy of the WR class: McConkey’s profile cannot be encapsulated by collegiate counting stats. McConkey, like McCarthy, hails from a 12-personnel, run-leaning offense for a program that slapped opponents silly and yanked starters early.

McConkey also wasn’t helped by the lower back strain he suffered in last year’s training camp. He played through the pain – the kid is tough as nails – before he was given a rest for the last two regular season games in advance of the epic SEC title showdown against Alabama.

Volume stats – which exist in a vacuum of context – lie. Context is the oxygen truth that needs to exist. And here’s the truth about Ladd McConkey: On a per-snap basis, he was a top-3 WR in this class.

Want an absurd stat? In 2023, more than 80% of the balls that left the quarterback’s hands headed in McConkey’s direction became completions. That wasn’t courtesy of a diet of spoon-fed targets – McConkey’s 12.2 aDOT was the exact same as Malik Nabers’. McConkey’s 3.26 YPRR ranked No. 4 among FBS prospects in this class.

One month after McConkey’s injury-riddled 2023 season came to an end, I was chewing ice cubes on a Delta flight headed to Mobile, Alabama. I didn’t know exactly where I stood on Ladd McConkey. I knew he was good… but just how good was he, exactly?

Over the next 48 hours, McConkey systematically destroyed all comers in one-on-one drills. No defensive back within Mobile’s city limits was safe. The shoot-em-up spectacle evoked Tank Dell’s show-stopping performance the year before when defenders began freely grabbing Dell’s jersey on Day 2 of practices so they wouldn’t get torched in front of NFL evaluators again. One year later, on the same field, on the same day of practice, McConkey was being.

With a night of sleep to think about their futures, the DB group had lost its appetite for playing McConkey off the line in one-on-ones. Better to keep Ladd McConkey in front of you than try your odds at hip-to-hip again. Nobody had the guts to start a snap within seven yards of Ladd McConkey.

At that point, one assumes, McConkey’s representatives told him the NFL had seen enough. Practice returned to normal on Thursday.

McConkey is the opposite of a “first guy off the bus” guy. I’ll freely concede it: I had to see it in person to totally get it. He is truly special at one thing and one thing only: Separating. If you leave one defender on McConkey in man coverage, McConkey’s shaking him. It just is what it is.

That’s good because McConkey is mediocre in contested situations. He is so rarely in them that it almost doesn’t bear mentioning. McConkey played three-quarters of his snaps in UGA’s 2-TE system. In the NFL, like the guy I comp him to, Jordan Addison, I think McConkey could play either, and also interchangeably shift between the two on a snap-to-snap basis.

McConkey’s work in the short- and intermediate-areas speaks for itself. His separation percentile, during his less-than-100-percent 2023 campaign, was top three in this class. He’s been undersold on the downfield stuff. On those concepts, McConkey bursts off the line and shoots up the field with 4.39 gas.

He’s extremely sudden into and out of route breaks. Every break is Origami, a clean angle. He flees the crime scene with high-octane acceleration. Zone coverage won’t save you. McConkey is devilishly clever against it, sussing out coverage sectors immediately and parking himself in your sore spot.

McConkey’s ankle-breaking agility plays with the ball in his hands – he makes defenders miss and forces off-angle attempts in space. McConkey broke four more tackles than Marvin Harrison Jr. on 50 less receptions, and five less than Rome Odunze on 62 fewer catches.

McConkey doesn’t have a huge catch radius, but he’s a contortionist at the catch point, someone who will drop to his knees for poorly thrown balls, extend high, and grab balls outside his frame on the move.

When I departed that airplane in Mobile, Alabama, I thought Ladd McConkey was going to be a very good NFL slot receiver. By the time I boarded the return flight, he had shot that theory full of holes. McConkey gave it a Viking funeral at the NFL Combine with a 93rd-percentile flaming arrow.

McConkey doesn’t have NFL superstar physical gifts. Which means he likely will not be a superstar. But Ladd McConkey will not fail. The same cannot be said for the poor souls who draw him without help in man coverage.

5. Brian Thomas Jr. | LSU
6027/209 | RAS: 9.84
Comp: Christian Watson

If anyone tells you that they know exactly what Brian Thomas Jr. will become at the next level, they’re lying. But here’s the good news: Thomas brings a high floor (as a pop-the-top WR2 whose speed must be respected), and the potential of a very high ceiling (legitimate NFL WR1).

Thomas was a top-100 overall recruit who started nine games at LSU as a true freshman on a team with a WR room chock-full of future NFL players. Thomas Jr. took a backseat his first two seasons amid the crowd, posting 359 yards as a freshman and 361 the next year.

But last year, Thomas made the leap, with a stellar 68-1177-17 receiving line in the SEC. His advanced stats are dazzling. Thomas Jr. was 82nd percentile against single coverage, 88th percentile in separation rate and 89th percentile in separation rate against single coverage. Only four other receivers in this class were 82nd percentile or above in all three metrics – and none sit above him in these rankings.

Not only that, but Thomas’ 147.8 passer rating on targets was the best of my top-20 ranked receivers. A gazelle of an athlete and a former star high school basketball player, Thomas is a special downfield playmaker.

Last year, his one season of stardom in college football, Thomas ran an extremely parred-down route tree that rarely asked him to change directions horizontally. Roughly two-thirds of Thomas’ routes were either go-routes, comebacks, or slants. Many of Thomas’ wins came courtesy of his athleticism.

If that continues to be the case at the next level – if his usage remains case-specific because he never becomes skilled at creating separation with nuance or acumen – Thomas will become a solid NFL WR2. Former LSU WR DJ Chark would be an example of this – someone whose size/speed and ball skills demanded respect, but who didn’t have the other clubs in his bag to affect games outside of that utility.

But if Thomas improves his route-running and becomes a complete receiver, he has all the physical ability needed to become a star WR1 at the next level.

6. Ricky Pearsall | Florida
6010/189 | RAS: 9.91
Comp: Adam Thielen

In the last three seasons, Ricky Pearsall has functioned as the WR1 for Jayden Daniels (at Arizona State), and the WR1 for Anthony Richardson and Graham Mertz at Florida. He then embarked upon a dominant pre-draft process, with an awesome Senior Bowl showing and an eye-popping NFL Combine.

Pearsall has an advanced feel for route-running and coverage designs. He will modify his path to get into open grass against zone and flick unpredictable and unsettling tempo changes at defenders in man like a toddler in control of your car’s volume knob. Pearsall marries head/shoulder deeks with sudden cuts at the peak of his stem to coax false steps. Deliberate footwork in and out of breaks. On extended plays, he’ll throw the plan out the window and freelance himself open.

Pearsall is blessed with truly exceptional hands (86.8 PFF hands grade in 2023). He spears balls outside his frame with regularity. Extremely reliable with anything inside his frame. Multiple one-handed highlight reel catches on campus. His catch against Charlotte – if you’ve seen it, you’re watching it in your head as I type – is one of the greatest any of us have ever seen in college football.

That catch was an extreme example of Pearsall’s Professor X-esque concentration – he’ll take the shot every time to complete a catch. He shows good spatial awareness and body control near the sidelines and in the end zone.

Pearsall showed the versatility to swap interchangeably between the slot and boundary in college. When we spoke at the Senior Bowl, Pearsall told me the NFL had mostly spoken to him about the slot. But this was before that event had ended. And a full month before Pearsall put the NFL on notice with his huge performance in Indianapolis.

Pearsall’s athletic profile and tape suggest he could be used in the same interchangeable way in the NFL. If used on the boundary, as was the case in college, he’ll need to be adjusted pre-snap to free him from press coverage.

7. Roman Wilson | Michigan
5106/185 | RAS: 8.6
Comp: Golden Tate

A sleek, fluid athlete with all the speed and quicks you’d want out of the slot. An assignment-minded player whom Michigan’s NFL staff greatly trusted – Wilson was the focal point of designed timing concepts in high-leverage situations.

Wilson’s lack of size and strength will relegate him mostly to slot duties in the NFL. But this will also prevent him from being pressed. Wilson has short arms – tied for second-shortest of my top-15 WRs – and thus a smaller catch radius, but he’s reliable on anything he can reach.

No, really – Wilson had one drop and zero fumbles as WR1 during Michigan’s undefeated 2023 title run (after two drops and zero fumbles in 2022). In an odd genetic quirk, Wilson has very big hands – bigger than Rome Odunze’s, one-eighth-of-an-inch smaller than Marvin Harrison’s and the same size as Xavier Leggette’s. Since he never flubs balls, this should probably be discussed as often as his size is.

Wilson struggles in true contested situations due to his body composition. But he’s skilled at making tough catches in congested quarters, a very good ball tracker who sees the ball well through the catch phase no matter what is happening around him. Wilson consistently makes plays downfield when he can free himself – we saw this in numerous big spots over the past two years.

Out of the slot, Wilson is a squirty, bursty route-runner who is tough to stick with one-on-one. He adjusts tempos at will, putting his man on a balance beam. Wilson changes directions fluidly without losing momentum. He quickly finds bare patches against zone and squats.

The film I watched on Wilson showed a high effort gnat of a blocker. He won’t overpower anyone, but he also doesn’t shirk assignments. Wilson goes right at his man and forces him to fight through to get involved in the play.

Though Wilson’s counting stats suffered due to Michigan’s run-first ethos and the Wolverines starters getting pulled in the second half of many blowouts last year, his value can be seen in ranking No. 1 in expected points added per route run. He was also top-10 nationally in QB rating when targeted.

Wilson doesn’t break many tackles and isn’t a huge YAC threat, but he profiles as a reliable and efficient starting slot in the NFL immediately.

8. Xavier Worthy | Texas
5112/165 | RAS: 9.41
Comp: DeSean Jackson

Worthy was initially part of Michigan’s vaunted 2021 recruiting class that included JJ McCarthy. But after his enrollment into the university hit a snag over academics, Worthy re-opened his recruitment and signed with new Texas HC Steve Sarkisian. Sarkisian, the former Alabama OC, had pitched Worthy on becoming the DeVonta Smith of his revamped Longhorn offense.

Worthy will, of course, not be drafted as high as Smith. But after his record-setting 4.21 forty at the NFL Combine, Worthy remains in play to go in Round 1. Worthy and Smith have similar frames – Smith entered the NFL an inch taller and five pounds heavier – but differing playing styles.

Worthy is more reminiscent of DeSean Jackson, and, more recently, Hollywood Brown and Tank Dell. He is a slippery burner with natural separation skills. The athleticism and lightning-quick feet make him extremely difficult to stay within space.

Worthy showed the ability to play both inside and outside at Texas. I think he can do the same in the NFL. He’s a good route-runner – independent of the athleticism. Worthy sets up defenders to fail before the ball has been thrown, and he’s shown the ability to win at all three levels while handling heavy usage in Austin.

The Longhorns got Worthy involved in a myriad of ways, including shuttling the ball off to him behind the line of scrimmage. As Sarkisian had promised, the Texas staff wanted the ball in Worthy’s hands. Worthy had 197 catches and 26 TDs over three seasons.

I have only one real concern about Worthy, and it has nothing to do with his weight. His ball skills need real work. When the ball is in his hands, everyone in the stadium holds their breath. But getting it there isn’t always a fixed outcome, despite his prowess at separating. On tape, Worthy’s drops fell into two buckets: 1) Bad technique and 2) Poor concentration. The fact the issue couldn’t be isolated to one fixable thing bears mentioning.

The technique aspect has to do with a bad habit of excessive body-catching – letting balls get into his frame and trapping them against his torso. This also has the effect of slowing his process into becoming a runner, adding transition time. This doesn’t occur every catch – I saw impressive instances of extension for bucket throws, for instance – but his odds of securing the ball plummet in instances it crops up. Beyond that, Worthy has a smaller catch radius and isn’t reliable on stuff soundly outside his frame – even balls that were supposed to be thrown that way.

For example, in the huge showdown against Alabama in Week 2, Worthy broke the ankles of his man on a whip route at the goal line. He basically had one-half of the end zone to himself as he sprinted toward the pylon. QB Quinn Ewers led him that way – correctly – to keep the ball far safely away from a trailing backside defender. This forced Worthy to reach out for what should have been a touchdown. But the ball clanked off Worthy’s hands to the turf. Hand up – I’m a huge Xavier Worthy fan. But it was this sort of thing that forced me to temper my final ranking of him.

Worthy had 12 charted drops in the last two years, but even that number seems generous – I sure feel like I saw more. Worthy has lightning-in-a-bottle athleticism, but the lack of money-in-the-bank reliability is what ultimately cost him a Round 1 grade in a split decision on my board. If he can button that part of his game up, we’re in store for another decade of DeSean Jackson-like highlights.

9. Keon Coleman | Florida State
6032/213 | RAS: 8.19
Comp: Courtland Sutton

Coleman is an eye-of-the-beholder evaluation. In every aspect, you can see his projection in diametrically opposite ways.

Was Keon Coleman productive?

Nope!: He never had an 800-yard season, and he left college with fewer than 1,500 career receiving yards. In 2023, while undefeated FSU was in the heart of chasing a CFP bid, Coleman’s picture was on a milk carton. He was a total non-factor.

Yep!: As a 19-year-old sophomore at Michigan State, Coleman had a 29% dominator rating. That year, he had more catches, more yards, and more TDs than second-rounder-to-be Jayden Reed, who was the veteran of that team. Last year, at FSU, in games where both Coleman and QB Jordan Travis were healthy, those were the games where Coleman looked like a star. Coleman lit up LSU (9-122-3) and Clemson (5-86-2) and ended up averaging 5.5 catches for 77 yards and 1.3 TD per game in seven contests between September-October (when you omit the Boston College game played in 30+ mph wind gusts). Things went south in November, first because of an injury that cost Coleman one game and had him playing less than 100 percent in multiple others. QB Jordan Travis’ subsequent season-ending injury made matters all the worse – FSU’s backup quarterbacks were ghastly. Coleman ended up having only eight catches over three November games. In sum, of Coleman’s 87 targets in 2023, only 55 were charted as “catchable.” Coleman caught 50-of-55, with 11 going for a TD and 28 others turning into first downs.

Is Keon Coleman athletic?

Nope!: Are you kidding? His 4.61 forty was the second-slowest of the WR group, and it came with terrible splits. That’s problematic for a guy who isn’t crisp changing directions. Coleman didn’t create separation in college and won’t at the next level. Don’t believe me? Perhaps you’ll believe last season’s 0-percentile separation rate. That’s not a typo!

Yep!: How are you going to mention the 4.61 forty without mentioning that Coleman had the fastest gauntlet time of any receiver in Indianapolis on the same day? He touched over 20 mph on the GPS while securing every catch – the only WR who could claim that. Coleman’s vertical and broad jumps were each at least 88th percentile. In the open field, hurdles defenders who try to chop out his legs and keep trucking. Lastly, let me get this straight – you’re trying to argue that a dual-sport star who played basketball for Tom Izzo at Michigan State a few years ago is… a bad athlete? Are you mad?!

Is Keon Coleman ready for the NFL?

Nope!: Far from it. He’s a contested-catch guy who can’t separate from ACC corners who only spent three years on campus. He was never going to separate in the NFL anyway, but he’s not refined enough in the other areas of his game to trust against NFL competition. He is setting himself up for failure.

Yep!: Coleman is already experienced at beating the press. And why do you keep glossing over his ball skills? They are utterly superb – you see the rebounder he was in his past life all over his tape. He’s big, and he plays bigger – a box-out artist with hops and vice-grip hands. He positions well with the rock descending and attacks it in the air. His jump-ball ability in the NFL could be exceptional.

Where do I stand?

Coleman has understandably been one of this class’ most polarizing prospects. At our company’s annual retreat a few months ago, I moderated intense friendly debates between Pat Fitzmaurice (pro-Keon camp) and Derek Brown (Keon-hater club) over the subject. I fall somewhere in-between – over the years, I’ve seen this kind of guy become an NFL difference-maker, and I’ve seen him bust.

This prospect type goes in Round 2 of every process. There are myriad examples of successes that Coleman closely resembles (Courtland Sutton and Tee Higgins being two). There are also plenty of busts you could comp him to (like JJ Arcega-Whiteside, or former first-rounder Kevin White). At the end of the day, if I need a starting receiver, and I’m on the clock in Round 2, and sure things are already off the board – I’m happily rolling the dice.

10. Troy Franklin | Oregon
6017/176 | RAS: 9.02
Comp: Marvin Mims Jr.

I’ve found Franklin to be one of the hardest receivers to rank – even harder than the intensely polarizing guys like Keon Coleman. Franklin’s closest recent athletic comps are Marvin Mims and Jameson Williams. Williams went 1.12 in 2022, while Mims went 2.63 last spring. Franklin is almost assuredly going to go somewhere between those slots. But toggling for a comp between two guys who have 47 catches combined across three total NFL seasons probably isn’t the endorsement his evaluation is looking for.

What I like: Extremely productive with a 3.32 YPRR last year. Was the focal point of a machine-like Oregon offense. Has proven he has the tools to win at all three levels. On manufactured touches, Franklin’s tackle-breaking offers the possibility of freebie YAC yardage off guaranteed completions. Route-running improvement led to improved dividends in the intermediate area in 2023. Franklin also has a knack for stacking his man and picking up steam for advantageous downtown deep shots that he converted at a high rate in college, a good ball-tracker with trampoline hops.

What concerns me: Franklin is rail-thin. Play strength is not in his profile’s dictionary. His 10.0% drop rate last year is a red flag (8.0% career) – particularly for a prospect of his type. Franklin’s hand size is tied for the second-smallest (with Xavier Worthy) of my top-20 WR. He needs space to make the catch – Franklin struggles in contested situations. That concerns me because Franklin doesn’t generate the separation in the intermediate area as much as I wanted – he loses momentum in route breaks, opening the door for corners to recover. Franklin’s 4.41 speed wasn’t terrible, but he failed to meet expectations (the sportsbooks set his number in the 4.3s). His 19th-percentile 10-yard split was the truly problematic result.

Bottom line: If Franklin’s tackle-breaking and long-ball skills both translate, he’s going to be an NFL starter. He’s going to need to improve his route-running plan in the intermediate sector to offset his lack of burst out of route breaks – fine-tuning his footwork efficiency while adjusting tempos more often would greatly help. Since Franklin will likely not be an NFL star, he really needs to cut down on the drops.

11. Xavier Legette | South Carolina
6010/221 | RAS: 9.9
Comp: David Boston

Big, well-built receiver with inside/outside versatility. Longtime special-teamer who broke out in 2023 with a 71-1,255-7 line – he’d never posted more than 167 receiving yards in his four seasons previous to that on campus. This means he’s about to become the first WR since Velus Jones to go in the top three rounds despite never topping 500 receiving yards over the first four years in college.

Legette, fortunately, is blessed with very good hands – he spears balls outside his frame and will fish worm-burners off the turf. Last season, Legette dropped only two balls on 97 targets. He’s a springy athlete for his size with solid feet. Acrobatic high-point jump-ball guy. Has a good feel for working the sidelines and keeping his feet inside the chalk while going high for balls.

He has a knack for not losing momentum while turning upfield after a catch, which helps maximize YAC opportunities. This is key, because Legette is surprisingly not a tackle-breaking machine, despite his muscular frame. This is because he’s an easy target as a north-south athlete who doesn’t easily change directions.

Another odd part of his profile, for a worker bee-type: Legette is a disinterested run blocker. With even a dollop of effort, he should be at minimum passable in this phase considering his frame. But it’s worth mentioning that he didn’t give it last year.

Legette profiles as a solid NFL No. 2 boundary WR. He brings with him a wealth of experience on various special teams units from his first four years on campus, so he’ll give you a core special-teamer from Day 1.

12. Javon Baker | Central Florida
6012/202 | RAS: 7.84
Comp: Rashee Rice

Baker is a former five-star recruit who finally realized his potential after transferring from Alabama to UCF. He plays with an unmistakable attitude. Press corners better bring their boxing gloves and their tap shoes. Baker’s release package is a matrix of footwork. He’s not explosive off the line – he’s a build-up speed guy – but he releases clean and doesn’t waste time getting to work.

Baker was a veritable downfield assassin at UCF, with a bananas 17.1 aDOT. The thing that jumps out is the my-ball determination. Baker attacks the ball in the air and latches on, undeterred by contact. He’s one of the class’ best contested catch receivers, despite the bloated aDOT, going 20-for-36 in those instances the past two years, mostly in downfield scenarios.

Capable of winning at all three levels of the field, Baker is a serious YAC threat due to his combination of play strength and contact balance. I love his ability to spear off-frame balls on the move and keep chugging in the short and intermediate sectors – he had plenty of opportunities to showcase that ability with UCF’s up-and-down throwers the past few years.

Baker isn’t the most agile, but his overall routes are better than adequate, in part because he understands leverage and tempo, and in part because he can so quickly throttle into and out of route brakes. He does a decent job stacking, but Baker’s lack of elite wheels can lead to more company at the catch point when he’s tailed from behind.

Baker had a red-flag drop rate of over 10% the past two seasons, something he needs to clean up – this is a concentration issue, as his reel of highlight grabs would attest. But I’m not going to brush that aside, as it speaks to my biggest general question/concern regarding Baker’s evaluation – keeping his head in the game at all times.

When things aren’t going his way, or concepts are called to the other side of the field, you notice instances of half-heated “routes.” But when Baker is involved, and especially when he’s cooking, he has an infectious barking-dog energy to him on the field, someone who pumps up his teammates while driving opponents mad.

Baker drew plenty of criticism for blowing a kiss to the Oklahoma sideline during an 86-yard TD catch in October. That stunt drew an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and a butt-chewing from coaches. What do people fail to mention? That play, which occurred right before halftime, immediately responded to the touchdown Oklahoma had just scored. It sent the 2-4 Knights to the locker room with a three-point lead over the heavily favored, undefeated Sooners. UCF was a failed last-second two-point conversion away from going to OT with the No. 6 ranked Sooners. Baker was in his bag all game long, finishing with a 5-134-2 line on six targets. I remember it well. I was holding a fat UCF +21 ticket in my pocket that day – Baker terrorized the Sooners.

Baker is your classic boom-or-bust profile. In my opinion, he has way more upside than he’s been given credit for. If Baker finds the right situation, with a staff that believes in him, and a staff that he in turn trusts, he’s going to be a steal. If he doesn’t, things could go the other way.

2024 Dynasty Fantasy Football Guide

13. Adonai Mitchell | Texas
6022/205 | RAS: 9.98
Comp: DJ Chark

I get why people love Mitchell. He played at two blueblood programs, in several huge games. He’s a size/speed super freak, with 4.34 wheels and a 98th-percentile broad jump in a big package.

But, simply put, Mitchell has not displayed the NFL skills that the guys above him on this list have. Watching Mitchell’s tape is an exercise in frustration. He does not go full-bore every rep – there were myriad examples of half-hearted jogging off the line on plays designed to go to the other side.

Beyond that, at this time, Mitchell is a situation-specific target. Look elsewhere for your efficiency, like the Longhorns did. Texas preferred going to Xavier Worthy, Ja’Tavion Sanders and even Jordan Whittington in the short/intermediate sectors. Mitchell telegraphs change-of-direction plans early, and he doesn’t quickly accelerate once his momentum has been affected.

Mitchell is a long-strider who needs a runway to build up to his speed. Want proof? Mitchell’s 10-yard split on that 4.34 equaled Ja’Lynn Polk and Jalen Coker, who ran 4.52 and 4.57 forties, respectively. When Mitchell gets a step headed downfield, that’s when he becomes dangerous. He gets faster the further you go down the field, and there simply aren’t many humans alive who can match his top gear – the list of those his size is far smaller still.

Mitchell is capable of hitting moon-shot dingers. But the reason his production profile in college was always hit-and-miss is because when he isn’t connecting, he’s striking out. On a great passing offense last year, Mitchell finished with 35 or fewer receiving yards in half of Texas’ games (seven of 14). But he went over 140 yards twice and cracked 100 in a third. In those three games, he averaged 16.6 YPC. When he isn’t parking balls, he’s a non-factor.

I see Mitchell the opposite way most do. I’ve heard the opinion numerous times this spring that Mitchell has this enormous ceiling if you can stomach a little risk. To me, it’s the opposite: He has a relatively high floor – as your prototypical pop-the-top WR2 – but only a mid-tier ceiling. Mitchell does not change directions well enough nor run routes crisply enough to become an alpha NFL WR1, and his loafing reps on film don’t suggest dogged determination at the margins. I see a DJ Chark-type.

14. Malik Washington | Virginia
5084/191 | RAS: 8.88
Comp: Sterling Shepard

If Mitchell is our feast-or-famine explosion guy in-game, Washington is the meat-and-potatoes efficiency counterpoint. A Northwestern transfer who finally blew up last season after transferring to Virginia, Washington is on the older end for draft prospects. He had a very late breakout age, and has catch radius limitations, with short arms on a short frame. But Washington will almost assuredly be starting in the slot by some point during his rookie season. And he has the skill set to produce for years.

A sawed-off slot with a thick build, Washington has a powerful lower body. Springy, with strong leg-drive. He bursts off the line and threatens coverage plans immediately. Catch radius limitations aside, Washington makes the plays he’s physically able to. He’s very dangerous after the catch – a running back in the open field who bursts through arm-tackle attempts. Washington broke 35 tackles last year, five more than the next-highest finisher in this class (Malik Nabers).

It’s not the sexiest profile, and NFL stardom is almost assuredly not in his future. However, it would be a big surprise if Washington didn’t start for years as a valued efficiency/YAC cog out of the slot.

15. Jalen McMillan | Washington
6010/197 | RAS: 8.67
Comp: Tyler Boyd

Last spring, Tennessee WR Jalen Hyatt had Round 1 buzz throughout the draft process, while his teammate WR Cedric Tillman was seen as a mid-round afterthought. I spent the process arguing that Tillman was, in fact, the better player – the only reason people thought differently was because Tillman had gotten hurt his last year on campus, giving Hyatt a chance to break out during the underbelly of Tennessee’s schedule. The pair went back-to-back in Round 3 (and had analogous qualitative rookie seasons).

This year, Jalen McMillan is Cedric Tillman. And Ja’Lynn Polk – we’ll get to him below – is Jalen Hyatt. Go back to 2022, when McMillan was healthy. That year, McMillan and Rome Odunze were virtually indistinguishable as Washington’s WR1. In fact, McMillan had four more catches and two more TD than Odunze, while Odunze finished with 47 more yards. Polk was the clear and distant WR3 on that team.

Stats from the 20 games the last two years when Jalen McMillan/Ja’Lynn Polk completed full games together at Washington….

McMillan stats:
124 catches, 1,657 yards, 14 TD

Polk stats:
68 catches, 1,210 yards, 9 TD

Things changed this past September when McMillan suffered a knee injury against Michigan State. It would be two months before McMillan would play a full game again – he missed all or the vast majority of the eight ensuing games. McMillan attempted to gut it out and return for games against Stanford and Oregon in October. He was forced to exit quickly when the knee wasn’t reacting well to cutting.

It wouldn’t be until November 25 against Wazzu when McMillan finally did return – he clearly wasn’t 100 percent, but he still caught five balls. Washington didn’t have a choice but to make Polk the WR2 when McMillan went down. When McMillan was healthy, there was no debate.

McMillan is an efficient, reliable, high-volume big slot in the Tyler Boyd vein when he’s healthy. Why has McMillan been undersold this process? Because analysts are basing their assessments off his 2023 tape when he was hurt. This is a flawed process. Go back to the 2022 stuff and your mind will change.

McMillan’s 2022 tape shows a devilishly clever route-running slot. I particularly appreciate his work in zone, where he gets to open grass immediately and flashes to the quarterback. In man, he has a knack for baiting a defender’s balance one way to go the other. McMillan is a build-up speed guy, but he has downfield utility. He tracks the ball well and has soft hands.

McMillan’s game is built off the threat of that juice along with his ability to quickly throttle down and work back to the ball. He has good hands and regularly speared balls outside his frame in college.

He’s a capped-ceiling, slot-only guy who lacks play strength and can get jarred by contact along his route. He’s not great in contested situations for this reason, and he’s also not a huge YAC threat. But he’s going to catch a ton of balls in the NFL and keep the chains moving.

16. Luke McCaffrey | Rice
6015/198 | RAS: 9.44
Comp: Josh Reynolds

It might be surprising to hear that the son of a longtime NFL standout receiver and the brother of one of the NFL’s best current players is a late-bloomer. But that’s Luke McCaffrey: The former four-star dual-threat quarterback struggled mightily across three seasons at Nebraska and Rice (with a stop at Louisville for a few weeks in between) before finally deciding to switch positions for his final two campaigns at Rice.

McCaffrey took quickly to his new post, dropping a 131-1732-19 line over two seasons. He was a base big-slot in college who moonlighted on the boundary (70/30 snap split). McCaffrey has the athleticism to get deep and the concentration and hands to make plays in the third sector. His tape is littered with catches where he caught the ball in congested quarters.

Anecdotally, McCaffrey easily led this receiver class in completed catches where his helmet flew off because of a hit. He’s a street-fighter at the catch point – multiple times I witnessed him ripping a should-be interception away and turning it into an incompletion or huge catch. He was a superb 17-for-28 in contested situations last year.

Very strong hands in general. Only three drops despite being targeted 120 times in 2023. Since he’s only been playing the position for two years, his routes remain a work in progress – but he understands both coverage concepts and leverage. McCaffrey was dangerous enough with the ball in his hands that Rice would manufacture touches for him on end-arounds. No surprise for the former skilled scrambler. McCaffrey had 25 broken tackles in the last two years with zero fumbles. If his route-running continues to improve, he’s going to provide big ROI on his draft slot in April.

17. Jermaine Burton | Alabama
6002/196 | RAS: 9.54
Comp: Bernard Berrian

Burton moves well on the field, a glider with good athleticism. He knows how to attack leverage in man and find the soft spots against zone. Last year, his downfield machinations were on full display, with a ludicrous 20.2 aDOT that led this class. That usage-specific role was out of necessity, not a lack of aptitude – Alabama QB Jalen Milroe is a gifted deep-ball thrower who struggles with accuracy and timing concepts. Burton’s downtown prowess should translate. And I think he has more utility in the short and intermediate sectors than we have recently gotten a chance to fully see. Consistency has been an issue, however, in part due to missed assignments and flubbed routes.

And I hesitate to even include this, but it’s a contextual fair warning: I’ve heard multiple NFL teams do not have Burton on their draft boards over character concerns. I reached out to an NFL agent who pursued Burton last year about that, and got the following response: “Not surprised.” Burton faced intense public criticism after Alabama’s 2022 last-second loss to Tennessee after cameras appeared to catch him taking swipes at two different crowd-storming Vols fans – one of them a female – as he walked off the field. Dane Brugler spoke to this on a recent episode of “The Athletic Football Show”: “The talent’s there. It’s a matter of consistency on and off the field. He’s been to six schools in eight years. As one NFL scout put it, he was on the s*** list of the coaches of both Georgia and Alabama”

On talent alone, Burton should be several slots higher in these rankings. But if Burton slides on Draft Weekend, you will know why.

18. Devontez Walker | North Carolina
6014/193 | RAS: 9.87
Comp: Breshad Perriman

Walker is a field-stretching burner with 4.36 wheels. He’s raw and will be 23 when training camp opens. But he has that one neat trick to build around: Walker is not explosive off the line but has elite build-up speed. Walker is going to have to hang his hat on his downfield prowess initially – but he is skilled in that area. He has a my-ball attitude and will fight for it, and Walker has a late-hands aptitude that delays the defensive backs’ play on the ball.

However, Walker got himself into more contested situations than he should have downfield because he didn’t put the corner into conflict by splitting and stacking him. Walker ran lots of go-routes and comebacks in college – fastballs and changeups – with the occasional lazy drag near the LOS. His routes lack pizazz and snap – they’re often telegraphed.

On the comebacks, for instance, you didn’t see Walker sprinting full-bore to sell the nine-route. He’d be going less-than-full speed to make the route break easier – tipping the defender to what was coming. The go-routes were full-bore efforts to reach top speed as quickly as possible without effort laid to confuse the defender as to his ultimate intentions. Walker’s lack of appreciation for either subterfuge or leverage invariably acted as an open invitation for foot races. Against MAC and ACC defenders, Walker’s athleticism could finish the job. In the NFL, that ain’t gonna cut it.

To be fair, Walker played only 28 games of FBS football – with a mere eight coming in the Power 5. He did not get fully developed in a pair of systems (Kent State and UNC) that asked him to run pared-down route trees. Walker really could have used another year in college to develop his game. At present, he’s a field stretcher badly in need of development elsewhere.

19. Johnny Wilson | Florida State
6063/231 | RAS: 9.88
Comp: Hakeem Butler

Absolutely enormous target. Wilson is taller and heavier than Mike Evans, Allen Lazard and Equanimeous St. Brown. Wilson is one of the class’ best blockers – on reach and width alone, he’s exceedingly difficult to breach. Over the last two years, Wilson played nearly 90% of his snaps on the boundary. This is clearly Wilson’s plan for the NFL – despite reported interest from NFL teams to use him as a big-slot WR/TE hybrid, Wilson only took snaps as a boundary WR at the Senior Bowl. I believe this was a mistake.

Wilson’s intimidating size can be used against him on the boundary when, for instance, press corners get under his pads and jar him toward the boundary, siphoning his available options. It also very much plays against him along the route path when he’s trying to create space, as those long legs labor to quickly change directions.

However, and it must be said — Wilson has skills you don’t typically see in players this big. Wilson has strong north-south athleticism for a big man – you don’t have to squint to envision him being a nightmare down the seam if he ever does consent to slot work. And when you play him off, you leave yourself susceptible to Wilson screeching on the breaks and coming back to the ball, something he’s surprisingly good at for a tall oak.

Wilson was a productive collegiate receiver (2.52 YPRR) with obvious utility down the field, something his elevated yearly aDOT figures spoke to (14.4 career). But he continues to have issues with drops – his 12.8% career drop rate is a huge red flag. I’m a bit spooked by the profile, especially with how similar it is to one of my biggest misses ever in my time doing NFL Draft work. At Iowa State, Hakeem Butler had a career 12.7% drop rate on 14.5 aDOT and 2.59 YPRR. I believe Wilson will have to move inside to have a chance to become an NFL difference-maker. The sooner, the better.

20. Ja’Lynn Polk | Washington
6013/203 | RAS: 8.84
Comp: DaeSean Hamilton

Polk was a Texas Tech transfer who broke out in his final season at Washington. His 2023 breakout as a senior – 69-1159-9 receiving line – led several analysts to rank him as a top-10 receiver in this year’s class. That’s rich. As discussed above, Polk was Washington’s clear WR3 behind Rome Odunze and Jalen McMillan when all were healthy. Polk did not become a bigger facet of the offense until McMillan went down last year. In the five games after McMillan’s injury, Polk was thrust into a bigger role and exceeded 100 yards four times.

But in the last seven games of the 2023 season – from the start of November through the end of the CFP run, against the heart of Washington’s schedule, with McMillan back for the last four – Polk had a pedestrian 23-323-2 receiving line. That included two games where Polk was healthy and active but got held to zero catches. Over those seven games, in one of the country’s most pass-happy offenses, when it mattered the most, Polk had an average of three catches for 46 yards. Not great, Bob.

The thing I like about Polk is that he has very, very good hands. He’s going to catch anything inside his kitchen. He showed inside/outside versatility in college. But I believe he’s headed for the slot in the NFL. Polk simply isn’t explosive or sudden enough for the boundary, and I worry that consistent NFL press coverage will give him trouble. He would profile as a non-explosive big slot receiver at the next level who isn’t great after the catch.

21. Brenden Rice | USC
6023/208 | RAS: 7.93
Comp: Bryan Edwards

The son of the legendary Jerry Rice, Brenden is a boundary receiver with good body control for his size. He is capable of making plays near the sideline, and, as seen in 2023, in the red zone. But Rice’s routes feature a surprising lack of nuance. His inability to separate forces quarterbacks to thread the needle. Unfortunately, Rice is not as good in contested situations as you’d think. USC wanted him to be Drake London, and he just couldn’t make those kinds of plays. I see a rotational role at the next level.

22. Malachi Corley | Western Kentucky
5100/215 | RAS: 7.76
Comp: Amari Rodgers

Corley is an RB playing slot WR. Thiccc build. A tank after the catch. Easily led this class with 40 broken tackles in 2022. Tremendous power and balance for a receiver as a runner – far more akin to a running back in the open field. Not a surprise, as he began his career at WKU as an RB (after initially signing as a CB). He offers utility in the run game, whether on end-arounds or when shifted into the backfield. WKU manufactured most of his touches for him. Over the past two seasons, Corley had 89 catches behind the line of scrimmage — he led the nation in screen yards both times.

Corley ran a pared-down route tree – this area of his game needs work for him to develop into more than a gadget guy. He doesn’t show much nuance or tactical footwork along his route path when he is asked to go downfield, instead blurring where he is going with an unconvincing deke at the top of his stem. Conversely, he caught just 15 balls 20-plus yards downfield. Corley had a troubling 23.5% contested catch rate last year despite a 5.5 aDOT that ranked No. 495 in the FBS. Needs to be drafted by a team that will use him situationally early on.

23. Jacob Cowing | Arizona
5083/168 | RAS: 6.24
Comp: Jakeem Grant

Tiny receiver with 4.38 wheels. Earlier in his career, at UTEP, Cowing showed he could win downfield, with aDOTs of 14.8 or higher in each of his first three years. But in the last two years at Arizona, playing beside future R1 pick Tetairoa McMillan, and mostly with a QB who struggled with accuracy, Cowing was relegated to a near-the-line-of-scrimmage role. His aDOTs plummeted to 8.4 and 6.7, respectively. I was hoping to see him harken back to his UTEP days at the Senior Bowl. Instead, Cowing struggled for two days of practices before exiting with injury on the third.

24. Jamari Thrash | Louisville
5116/188 | RAS: 6.65
Comp: Antonio Callaway

Played predominantly on the boundary in college, but is likely headed for slot work in the NFL. Lacks play strength and regularly gets bumped off his route path. Don’t throw it to him when he’s covered – Thrash was a horrid 3-for-19 in contested situations last year. Hands weren’t a problem in the G5 in 2022, but interestingly his drop rate spiked to a red-flag 11.3% last year despite his aDOT falling from 15.0 to 11.1. The best part of Thrash’s game is the shake he has with the ball in his hands. You’ll see him squirt through small openings on funnel screens into open grass and make the first man miss. Thrash had the same YAC average as Malik Nabers last year (6.6). But the upside is capped here due to the lack of size and strength with mediocre speed. Thrash needs to find a team that is willing to manufacture touches so he can leverage his YAC ability.

Best of the rest…

25. Ryan Flournoy | Southeast Missouri State
6006/202 | RAS: 9.88
Comp: Dontayvion Wicks

26. Cornelius Johnson | Michigan
6026/212 | RAS: 9.45
Comp: Andrei Iosivas

27. Jha’Quan Jackson | Tulane
5091/188 | RAS: 5.35
Comp: Ray-Ray McCloud

28. Anthony Gould | Oregon State
5083/174 | RAS: 8.86
Comp: Greg Dortch

29. Tahj Washington | Southern California
5096/174 | RAS: 5.13
Comp: Richie James

30. Ainias Smith | Texas AM
5903/190 | RAS: 7.36
Comp: Olamide Zaccheaus

31. Jalen Coker | Holy Cross
6013/208 | RAS: 8.54
Comp: Jason Brownlee Jr.

32. Bub Means | Pittsburgh
6010/227 | RAS: 9.35
Comp: Cody Latimer

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