Today we’re getting into the 2019 WR class and we’ll start with the top twenty and I’ll be adding more players as we head towards the NFL Draft and then our rookie drafts.
I’ve watched a ton of film over the last six weeks yet I still have plenty of work ahead of me. The idea is to be as fully informed as possible when it counts.
As I said yesterday with the RBs, the thing I want to emphasize is that these rankings are tightly grouped but loosely assigned. Meaning we could see some major changes in the coming weeks. These ranks are a jumping off point.
I’ll have the quarterbacks and the tight ends posted tomorrow.
I’ll update these rankings and add combine measurables next week.
|1||Preston Williams||6’4”||210||Colorado St||Not sure what he’s going to turn out to be. His off-field concerns seem pretty major but we’ll know more after draft day. This is a player who I’ll be hugely interested in if the NFL signs off on him. His draft position will tell us a ton, and that includes the possibility of him not getting taken at all. Williams is a serious talent who I’d be considering at the top spot of dynasty drafts if his college career was an extension of what he did in 2018—it’s not. Williams could be anything from a round one rookie target to a 3rd round target and he could even fall off my board entirely. Just know that his talent is very real. That’s why I’m putting him up here—to get your attention. The odds on you having to pay anywhere near this price are very low.|
|2||Marquise Brown*||5'9"||168||Oklahoma||He was in serious contention for the top spot, but his recent plantar fascia plate (lisfranc) surgery will put some storm clouds on his rookie horizon. This is an injury that could linger and often does. “Hollywood” may not be his usual self until 2020 and conceivably not even then. Once he is back to full strength, we expect a seriously good NFL receiver, with plenty fo statistical potential. This guy has speed and quickness to burn. If the NFL docs sign off on him, he’ll go high in the draft. We love this guy.|
|3||Parris Campbell||6'0⅝"||205||Ohio State||Parris reminds a bit of Golden Tate when Tate was at Notre Dame. His game is steeped with speed and toughness—both prerequisites at OSU. As with Tate, I suspect Campbell could take a few years to really put it all together, but his athleticism should help him make some plays in the interim—and, if he goes to the right team, he could make some waves early on. The Colts, Saints, Jets and Packers could all work well. He would fit nicely in those schemes and he’d get climbable depth charts with quality play at quarterback. A bad spot would be the Rams or the Bears—teams where he’d start off at fourth or fifth on a tough depth chart.|
|4||Kelvin Harmon*||6’3”||214||NC State||Harmon is a guy I’ve gone back and forth on a bit, but I generally like his game. He’s not perfect, but as they say, let’s not make perfection the enemy of good. Harmon does a lot well. He’s got quick feet for a man his size and in the words of Teddy KGB, he’s “veeery agreeesive,” and in a good way. Harmon plays hard on every snap I’ve watched. He’ll block for his teammates and he does not shy away from the big spot. He’ll make the big play and he’ll do it in a big way. His route work has a ways to go but he’s a little better than par for a collegian. Harmon bodies a high percentage of his targets, which will cost him some stats at the next level as NFL corners are more likely to poke those balls out. It’s also a sign that Harmon lacks confidence in his hands, but based on what I’ve seen, the lack of confidence is misplaced, because, when he’s forced to use his hands, he generally gets the job done.|
|5||D.K. Metcalf*||6'4"||230||Ole Miss||He’s a state-of-the-art prospect on the hoof. His physique has been a viral thing on social media but the main concern with Metcalf is health. Then again, is it? I watch his film and there’s not that much to love between the “wow” plays. I see a lack of separation too often and not just against quality corners. I see a lack of effort at times—particularly when the play is not designed for him. I suspect that I’ll have a stronger take on Metcalf once I’ve worked through his film a few more times, but no matter how much I watch, he’s going to be a gamble due to his health. If his landing spot is not a happy place, then he’s going to be high risk and high price, which is never a fun endeavor.|
|6||N'Keal Harry*||6’4”||215||Arizona State||He’s a player I have watched a lot and I’m not done. I’m interested in how well he’ll run. He’s clearly got major ball skills and he’s also pretty good at football in an all-around sense. The thing is, we are talking about taking him in rookie drafts and that means we want early success. Landing spot will have a lot to do with that. He needs to show off some kind of speed. Said differently, he cannot be slow. Something in the low 4’6 area would be ok with me.|
|7||Hakeem Butler*||6'6"||225||Iowa State||We have some dissension in the ranks with Hakeem Butler. I’m still trying to sell Coach on this guy and hopefully I get him eventually. Butler lacks quick twitch athleticism that you find with the great ones like Calvin and Julio, but he does have an interesting skill set due to his massive frame and his willingness to mix it up in traffic. This dudes’s got a long frame and strong hands. If he develops, he could be a red zone monster with a good quarterback. He’s definitely got my attention. At his best, he looks like a bigger version of Danario Alexander, but in general, he plays more like Brandon Coleman, but with stronger hands.|
|8||A.J. Brown*||6'1"||230||Ole Miss||He’s an absolute monster on the hoof at roughly 230 pounds and over six feet tall. He’s also cut like a body builder. He’ll have no trouble with the rough and tumble of the NFL. I’m coming around on Brown but I’d say I’m still below consensus. I think scheme fit for him may be more important that folks realize. His size screams outside but he played a lot of slot at Ole Miss. His routes, while at times impressive, also lack the stick-to-it element that I want to see on every snap. When a corner has him played well, his route can sort of die on the vine. It’s something he needs to lose, and he probably will. Brown has a shot at moving up as I continue to work through his film. I’m not very worried about his combine digits. The dude’s going to test well.|
|9||David Sills V||6'3⅛"||202||West Virginia||Sills is one of our favorite sleepers in the Rotobahn scouting department. He’s is still learning his position. Sills’ rookie year in the NFL will be his third year playing receiver not counting his fill-in role as a freshman back in 2015. Sills tracks the long ball and scores touchdowns. If he runs reasonably well in Indianapolis, his draft stock could start rising. Sills biggest area of required development is beating the jam. He’ll get fewer free releases as a pro and his film show a green receiver in that area. But remember, this is a player who converted to receiver after being a highly recruited quarterback. He’s more than capable of learning the footwork and tactics required. It’ll take some time, but he’s already got enough game to be a deep threat and a role player so he should be afforded some time to develop his full game.|
|10||Deebo Samuel||5'11¼"||201||South Carolina||I f you watch enough film you’re going to like Deebo. He plays with constant energy and exuberance. He’s also a confident athlete and a good football player. I like his chances of being a good NFL slot receiver though he certainly could play outside as well. The key will be landing spot and role. He has the size and skill set to be a high volume interior weapon, but those jobs do not grow on trees. New England would be a very interesting landing spot for him—where he could learn behind Edelman.|
|11||Riley Ridley||6’2”||201||Georgia||I like the way he’s flying under the radar. This is a guy with some good SEC film and a brother who is already proving himself in the NFL. He’s prototypically sized for a NFL receiver and has plenty of traits that teams like. I think he’ll be off the board earlier than some folks think—probably in round three.|
|12||JJ Arcega-Whiteside||6’3”||225||Stanford||Arcega-Whiteside is a player who could rise on my board as I go through his film a second and maybe a third time. More film is another thing I hope to find as I’ve been limited to five games so far and a few highlight reels. He show flashes of Eric Decker and T.J. Houshmanzadeh among other big athletic receivers. He could be sort of a poor man’s Anquan Boldin when you look at the way he likes to body defensive backs. Will all these skills play at the next level? I’m not sure. I think he’s certainly a contributor on some level but separation against quality corners could end up being a bugaboo in a quest for target volume.|
|13||Jalen Hurd||6'4⅛"||228||Baylor||Hurd is one of my guys this year. He’s both a running back and a receiver but I think receiver is going to be his home. This is a very unusual athlete. How many 6’4” running backs do you ever see? Well, he is one, and his film at Tennessee is not bad at all. Still, runners who are THAT that big offer up a lot of surface area for defenders to target, while that same size at receiver works for him. His routes are surprisingly good and I like what he could evolve into given a positive team environment (good coaching) and opportunity. His obvious application is as a run-after-the-catch guy but his length has me dreaming red zone dreams. A creative OC will have a package for him as a potential goal line back in empty sets. He would be an amazingly fun chess pice in a place like New England, Philadelphia, New Orleans or KC.|
|14||Stanley Morgan Jr.||6'0"||194||Nebraska||He’s a really interesting prospect. He shows big play ability and runs some good routes, but he failed to take games over or demand the ball as you would hope for. I’m very open to watching more of his film if I can scrounge some. Having a good combine could certainly help his stock.|
|15||Anthony Johnson||6'1⅝"||220||Buffalo||He’s a big kid who makes big plays in the style of Quincy Enunwa or Anquan Boldin. Sounds great, but I’m not sure he has Boldin’s speed and he certainly doesn’t have Enunwa’s. He’s a big kid with good body control. If he flashes decent speed at the combine, I like him as a developmental prospect.|
|16||Andy Isabella||5'9"||190||UMass||I need to do a deep dive on Isabella and I will, but for now, I see as many limitations as strengths. This kid went absolutely nuts against some really bad teams, so his stats need to be viewed with a salt lick at the ready. People will bring up the Georgia game, but let’s not kid ourselves—Georgia won that game by 39 points. They were up 42-13 at the half. Jake Fromm only attempted five passes in the game. This was more exhibition than game. Isabella’s scores came late, so keep all that in context. This doesn’t mean he’s not good. It means we need to look at the underpinnings of his game and not get blinded by Senior Bowl practice and a cake schedule. I’ll have more to say on Isabella n my pre-Draft ranks. Right now I’m on the fence with him. I love the speed, grit and the always on motor. I’m taking him seriously.|
|17||Lil’ Jordan Humphrey||6’4”||225||Texas||He’s got some legit ability at the catch-point and he’s got some ability after the reception. He’s a smooth athlete who can make catches around the boundaries. I see him as more of a depth player at the next level, but Coach likes him more.|
|18||Mecole Hardman||5’10”||187||Georgia||Speed kills and Mecole can fly. There’s not much film or production to hang one’s hat on, but what film we do have really shows off the wheels. If he finds a good home, he could maybe be a Tyreek Hill Light, and without the domestic violence, which is obviously a plus.|
|19||Hunter Renfrow||5'10½"||180||Clemson||I want to say I love this kid because he plays the way you want a receiver to play but I see more problems than reasons for excitement. He’s a role player due to his slight frame and lack of physicality. Still, his fantabulous hands and route work could find him a home.|
|20||Emanuel Hall||6'1¼"||196||Missouri||Really like this kid as an athlete and he’s got the size and speed we look for but my concern are the ball skills. He doesn’t track the ball well and too many catches are not clean, which is probably why he chooses to body-catch so many balls. I see him as a legit big play threat but he has a ways to go before he’s a candidate for a big role at the next level.|