2004 Draft Prospect Interview: Devery Henderson

Playing in the shadows of Michael Clayton at LSU not to mention being converted from running back may have been enough to stop anyone from competing. Yet, just days before the 2004 NFL Draft, Devery Henderson is looking at his stock rise like Microsoft during its heyday.

Devery Henderson caught just 23 passes as a junior, his first season playing the wide receiver position. But he did post some eye-popping statistics in limited action. Henderson's 23 receptions went for 447 yards and eight of those catches went for touchdowns.

He followed up his junior year with 53 catches and a SEC leading 11 touchdown hauls.

And he played behind certain first rounder Michael Clayton who caught 78 passes in 2003.

"I actually learned a lot from him even though I was a senior and he was a junior," Henderson said of his time with Clayton. "He had more experience at receiver than me and he had played more than I did. I learned a whole lot from him. He was a great guy and we had a great relationship."

Now they battle each other during the draft, but the truth is it is not a battle. Clayton will go based on his experience while Henderson goes on potential.

Henderson, 6-0, 195 pounds, has been playing receiver for just two years. He is a converted running back who has been able to take advantage of his speed, he ran the second-fastest 60-meter time in school history (6.72 seconds).

"It helped me a lot, mostly with running after the catch," Henderson says of his days as a running back. "I wish I would have started out playing wide receiver. I am still learning a whole lot as I have played the position for two years and I still feel that I have a whole lot more to learn."

Henderson certainly doesn't wish he was a running back still, offering a simple "nope" in response. He is instead more than happy to take the new opportunity that has been presented to him.

"My biggest thing was: I wanted to go out and prove I could be a good receiver as far as catching the balls in my hand and show that I could run good routes," Henderson said of his combine experience. "I was in the shadow behind Michael Clayton at LSU and I wanted to show people my talents a little bit more than I had the opportunity to do at LSU."

After the Senior Bowl, where he was easily the best receiver on the field, his stock soared.

But it isn't something he chose to build on during the Indianapolis Combines. Henderson chose, instead, not to run.

"I just felt that I would be more comfortable at my own facilities and run a better time there. I felt comfortable with the times I ran and how I did it.

"It is a long tiring process at the combines."

The process is almost over, but Henderson's learning curve has just begun. He has several things he has to improve upon. He has all the talent in the world and that explosion is becoming evident on the draft boards where he is vaulting up. In a draft full of players who have potential, Henderson may be the rawest and may have the most to gain.

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