Scouting Report: Aaron Dobson, WR, Marshall
Aaron Dobson comes from a program rich in tradition and story lines both inspirational and sad. After watching as much tape as we could find on Marshall’s top receiver, I have to say, I am pretty impressed. Dobson looks like the next great Marshall product to us. The senior has some very clear strengths that are undeniable on film. The man has NFL hands. He catches everything thrown at him and he makes all the different types of catches you’d expect an NFL receiver to make.
There’s always some guesswork when you are dealing with less prominent schools, but Marshall has produced its share of NFL players, including Randy Moss, Chad Pennington and Ahmad Bradshaw, so there’s historical precedence ... not that we care about that very much. The proof is in the pudding and this guy got it done on Saturday to the point where we are very confident about his ability to play on Sunday.
Things we like....
- He’s a size mismatch at the next level at 6’3” and 210 pounds.
- His speed looks good on film and he ran a 4.42 40 at his pro day.
- As mentioned, his hands are top shelf.
- He runs the full route tree. We don’t see him having a long learning curve at the next level with his routes.
- He gets open. By hook or by crook, this guy always seems to get separation. He also has a stunning knack of getting fully behind the defense. If he’d had a better quarterback, the touchdown total would be higher.
There will be talk about the type of competition that Dobson faced. We really don’t care about that. First of all, the guy can play on tape. Second, we saw him making plays against his tougher opponents. Another knock on Dobson will be the drop off in production in his senior season, but that was more attributable to the team having a down season after losing a ton of seniors from the 2011 squad that won the O’ Brady Bowl.
I’ve read some glowing reports saying that Dobson could be taken as high as the eighth overall receiver in this draft. We’ll take that up a notch. Rotobahn sees Dobson as arguably the third best receiver after Cordarrelle Patterson and Tavon Austin. He’s also among the most game-ready outside receiving threats in the draft along with players like Quinton Patton and Robert Woods.
We really think he is that good. It’s a very deep class for receivers and it’s hard to guess where some of them will go, but we doubt that many NFL teams will pass on Dobson more than once. We think he is gone some time in round two--earlier than most seem to expect.
As for fantasy value, we see him as a guy to own for dynasty leaguers, but we want to see where he lands before placing an exact value on him. It’s far more important than what round he gets drafted in. If Dobson were to land in a place like New Orleans, he could have significant redraft value in 12-team leagues.