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Dynasty Rookie Draft Advice: Devontez Walker (2024 Fantasy Football)

Dynasty Rookie Draft Advice: Devontez Walker (2024 Fantasy Football)

This is what we’ve been waiting for, fantasy football enthusiasts. The NFL Draft is under way, and we finally get to see where the rookie prospects are going to launch their professional careers. And NFL Draft landing spots allow us to start to zero in on fantasy football and dynasty rookie draft pick values.

Throughout the draft, we’ll take a closer look at fantasy-relevant prospects, giving you an overview of their strengths and weaknesses, and assessing their fantasy value in both redraft and dynasty formats.

Let’s dig in.

2024 Dynasty Fantasy Football Guide

Fantasy Football Rookie Draft Outlook

Fitz’s Fantasy Football Outlook

The Baltimore Ravens have selected North Carolina’s Devontez “Tez” Walker with the 13th pick of the fourth round.

Walker transferred from Kent State to North Carolina after catching 58 passes for 921 yards and 11 touchdowns for KSU in 2022. Walker wasn’t immediately eligible at North Carolina and only played eight games for the Tar Heels last year, but he was productive when he finally got on the field, with 41 catches for 699 yards and seven touchdowns.

The 6-1½, 193-pound Walker is an intriguing vertical receiver with 4.36 speed, a 40½-inch vertical jump and a 9.87 Relative Athletic Score. In addition to possessing dangerous speed, Walker is good at tracking the ball, he can elevate to make tough contested catches, and he seems to have a knack for working the boundary à la former Green Bay Packer Jordy Nelson.

Walker is still raw, having run a limited route tree in college. He’s played only 28 games of FBS football, and he played only eight of those games for a Power 5 team. He’s more of a developmental prospect than a ready-made NFL receiver.

Although Walker is a raw developmental prospect, he could potentially ascend the Ravens’ WR depth chart quickly. Walker’s game should complement that of No. 1 WR Zay Flowers nicely, and the other receivers at the top of the depth chart are Rashod Bateman and Nelson Agholor, who aren’t exactly stars.

In dynasty, I have Walker ranked WR19 among rookies and WR76 overall. He’s likely to come off the board in the early-to-mid third round of 1QB rookie drafts, and in the late third round or early fourth round of superflex rookie drafts.

Walker’s predraft FantasyPros Expert Consensus ranking was WR88 in half-point PPR formats, and he had a predraft Underdog best-ball ADP of 81. Given that Walker is a raw developmental prospect, I have little interest in him for redraft in 2024 and have him ranked WR101.

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Thor’s NFL Draft Profile & Player Comp

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.

Check out more NFL Draft profiles and player comps from Thor in our 2024 NFL Draft Guide partner-arrow

Dynasty Rookie Draft Rankings

Our analysts provide their latest rookie draft rankings below. And also check out our expert consensus dynasty rookie draft rankings!

More Dynasty Rookie Draft Advice

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