Scouting the top WR prospects

As part of our series previewing the NFL draft, we examine the top prospects at every position. This installment features the wide receivers.

Overall class strength: After a couple of fantastic years for wide receivers in the draft, the position took a step back in 2005. And it's even worse this year. In fact, this has to be considered one of the weakest wide receiver groups in a long, long time. There's no can't-miss, top 10 prospect in the bunch, and only two who are considered certain first-round selection.

The best: Chad Jackson, Florida; Santonio Holmes, Ohio State; Sinorice Moss, Miami.

The next wave: Maurice Stovall, Notre Dame; Derek Hagan, Arizona State; Jason Avant, Michigan; Martin Nance, Miami (Ohio); Demetrius Williams, Oregon.

Possible sleepers: Delanie Walker, Central Missouri; Marques Colston, Hofstra; Brandon Marshall, Central Florida; Richie Ross, Nebraska-Kearney.

First-round projections: Jackson, Holmes, Moss.

Quick hits: Jackson was considered by some a possession receiver before he ran under 4.4 at the combine. ... The one concern with Holmes is how he'll handle physical cornerbacks. ... Yes, Moss is the younger brother of Washington Redskins Pro Bowl wideout Santana Moss. ... Oregon State's Mike Hass won the 2005 Biletnikoff Award as the nation's top wideout, but his lack of ideal speed will drop him in the draft. ... Stovall and Nance both are in the 6-4, 6-5 range. ... Colorado's Jeremy Bloom and Miami's Devin Hester are two interesting wide receiver prospects, but more so because of their ability as returners, a group we'll examine later in the series.


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