Position Analysis: Wide receivers

The Vikings will have plenty of options through the first half of the draft at wide receiver. They come with all sorts of potential … and question marks. We review a dozen of the top options, along with a look at the Vikings' situation at the position.

POSITION OVERVIEW: The Class of 2012 is relatively good and deep at receiver. While Justin Blackmon is clearly at the head of the class, there are several specialist types that will come off the board in each of the first three rounds. By the time Day 2 comes to an end, there could be 10-12 wide receivers that have been taken. Given the increased emphasis on the passing games in the NFL, the need for wide receivers is constant. By the time the draft is over, most of the NFL's 32 teams are likely to grab at least one wide receiver – whether early or late.

VIKINGS' WIDE RECEIVERS: Percy Harvin, Michael Jenkins, Devin Aromashodu, Emmanuel Arceneaux, Stephen Burton, Bryan Walters, Kerry Taylor, Kris Adams.

VIKINGS' NEEDS: All one needs to do is take a look at the list of Vikings wide receivers and you will notice one thing very quickly – the team has one star in Harvin and a hodgepodge of mercenaries and bounce-around guys – none of whom are guaranteed a roster spot in September. The Vikings made a run at free agent Pierre Garcon, but bowed out when Daniel Snyder and the Redskins offered ridiculously big money (go figure). Harvin is the only star-quality player in this group, but he is best suited to play in the slot and not outside the hash marks. As things currently stand, wide receiver is a priority – either in what remains in free agency or the draft. It would be hard to figure out a way the Vikings don't take a WR in the second or third round of the draft because, quite simply, they need an impact player. Fortunately for them, there will still be talent on the board if they wait until the second or third round to address the position.

THE CREAM OF THE CROP

Justin Blackmon, Oklahoma State, 6-1, 207 – Fourth-year senior…Two-year starter who dominated – catching a whopping 232 passes for 3,304 yards and 38 touchdowns in that span…Won the Biletnikoff Award the last two seasons – only Michael Crabtree won the award twice prior to him…A two-time All-American and All-Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year…A multi-sport standout in high school, he was an outstanding basketball player and won a long jump title…Is very physical and can beat the jam at the line and often create mismatches by shoving aggressive CBs off of him and getting them off-balance…Has strong hands and wins almost every jump-ball midair dogfight…Will fight for the ball in traffic and shows no fear…Picks up good yardage after the catch and can make people miss…Is a solid blocker when running plays come his way…Doesn't have sprinter's speed…Is not the prototype receiver in terms of height or vertical jump…Has some character concerns, including a couple off-field incidents and a DWI in 2010…Had too many drops of catchable passes and has lapses of concentration…Chose not to work out at the Combine. PROJECTION: Head and shoulders the best college receiver in the game today, he won't make it past the first six or seven picks. Had the Rams not swung a deal, they could have taken him at No. 2 – he's that good. The only question mark about him is with the trappings of stardom and whether a huge paycheck will detract from his on-field ability. That's the only downside for an immensely talented player who should be on the Vikings' short list for potential picks at No. 3.

Michael Floyd, Notre Dame, 6-3, 220 – Fourth-year senior…Started 41 of 44 career games, finishing his college career with 271 receptions for 3,686 yards and 37 TDs…Exploded in his final two seasons, catching 179 passes for 2,172 yards and 19 TDs, including 100-1,147-9 numbers in 2011…Missed six games in 2009 with a broken collarbone…A two-time Minnesota Gatorade Player of the Year in high school…Stripped of his team captain status after being arrested for drunk driving in March 2011, which came on the heels of being cited twice in Minnesota for underage drinking in 2009 and 2010…Has ideal size and strength, is arguably the best blocking receiver in the Class of 2012…Has drawn comparisons to Dwayne Bowe of the Chiefs with his size-speed combination…Makes the tough catch look easy…Doesn't allow balls to get into his body and consistently hand-catches passes…Has good ball skills and wins most one-on-one battles for jump balls…Is versatile, having lined up at several different receiver positions in college…Is not a blazing speedster who will blow past defenders…Isn't very consistent and will drop some easy passes…Injuries are somewhat of a concern having missed time in two of his four seasons…Rounds off some of his routes and will need to improve in that area of his game…Three alcohol-related arrests will be a big red flag for some teams…Ran a 4.47 40 at the Combine with a 36½-inch vertical jump and a 10-2 long jump. PROJECTION: There is something to be said for blazing speed, but the metamorphosis of the modern-day NFL is that the big, physical receiver is the prototype for the future. Floyd has those qualities, which will see him come off the board in the first round. The questions now are where and when? He has some red flags that may get teams in the top 10 to back off, but his future is bright and whoever takes him will have a significant talent on their hands.

THE NEXT LEVEL

Kendall Wright, Baylor, 5-10, 196 – Fourth-year senior…Started 42 of 50 career games…His numbers improved each of his four years with the Bears (50-649-5, 66-740-4, 78-952-7, 108-1,663-14)…A multi-sport athlete, he was a high school long jump and triple champion in Texas and played with the basketball team his freshman season…Led Baylor in receptions all four of his seasons…Was a first-team All-Big 12 and second-team All-America last year…Has incredible burst off the snap and gets up to top speed quickly…Has elite game speed and is a home-run hitter…Has good body control and wins almost every jump-ball situation he is in…Is strong and reminds some scouts of Carolina's Steve Smith…Is at his most dangerous in the open field and rarely dropped passes…Doesn't have ideal size or bulk and, thanks to Baylor's offense, didn't face much press coverage from cornerbacks – that will change…Ran a gimmicky offense that was based on timing and quick passes and didn't have to run a lot of the routes NFL receivers need to do, so he will need work…Despite being a four-year starter, is still raw in NFL terms…Hurt his stock significantly at the Combine by running a sub-par 4.61 40 at the Combine, but had a 38½-inch vertical jump and a 10-1 broad jump. PROJECTION: A team leader and a fiery competitor who wants the ball, he may turn out to be the most dangerous receiver in this year's draft four or five years from now. His game needs refinement and he doesn't prototype size, but you can't teach speed and he has that like few others in this year's class…or even the last few years. Nobody is more dangerous with the ball in his hands in the open field, making him a first-round candidate.

Alshon Jeffery, South Carolina, 6-3, 216 – Third-year junior…Became a starter midway through his true freshman year and started 33 of 40 career games…Finished his career with 183 catches for 3,042 yards and 23 touchdowns…His numbers dropped markedly from 2010 (88-1,517-9) to 2011 (49-762-8)…Was the Gamecock's all-time leading receiver, posting more yards than Sterling Sharpe, Sidney Rice and Robert Brooks…One of just three SEC receivers to ever top 3,000 yards…Won four state high school basketball championships in South Carolina…His good size and strength and can create mismatches…Seemed to play his best against the top cornerbacks he faced…Uses size and strength to get a quick release and sheds defenders…Has the ability to consistently make the highlight-film catch, whether in traffic or a one-handed grab on a poorly thrown pass…Gained a lot yards after the catch…Doesn't have great speed and cost himself dearly at the Combine with slow times…Loses speed when making cuts or changing direction…Didn't run an NFL route tree and most of his routes were relatively simple timing patterns…Elected not to work out at the Combine. PROJECTION: Has the size NFL scouts look for and projects to be a solid pro, but his poor 40 time at the Combine may knock him out of the first round. He could be a viable candidate to end up with the Vikings if they use a second-round pick on a receiver.

Stephen Hill, Georgia Tech, 6-4, 215 – Third-year junior…Became a starter early in his sophomore year, and started 22 of his last 25 games…Caught just 49 passes in 38 games, but was a home-run threat, averaging 25.5 yards per catch for his career, including a massive 29.3 yards a catch in 2011…Incredible size and can get bigger and stronger…Blazing speed that made him the talk of the Combine…Has incredible leaping ability and won the Georgia State long-jumping title with a jump of 25 feet, 9 inches, which would have placed him ninth in the last Olympics…Has long arms and big hands to win one-on-one battles…Was a willing and effective blocker who did a lot of it in the GT wishbone offense, often taking on linebackers…Wasn't asked to run NFL routes and was a one-trick pony in the Georgia Tech offense…Is skinny and will need to commit to the weight room to get stronger…Dropped way too many passes he could have caught and isn't a natural plucker who catches consistently with his hands…Very limited production in college…Slows down markedly when asked to cut or change his route…Impressive at the Combine with a sparkling 4.36 40, a 39½-inch vertical jump and an 11-1 broad jump – all at or near the top among those who worked out in Indianapolis. PROJECTION: Perhaps the biggest roll of the dice in this year's draft class. He has a lot of qualities that scouts look for, but his lack of production reminds some of Troy Williamson, whom the Vikings fell in love with because of his speed, but his lack of pass-catching experience became painfully evident. He will get drafted higher than we have him ranked, but his boom-bust potential is too rich for our blood. He could easily go in the first round, but could end up being an expensive failed experiment. His Combine performance made him a lot of money, pushing him from a third-round prospect to a borderline first-rounder.

Rueben Randle, LSU, 6-3, 210 – Third-year junior…Became a starter a month into his sophomore season, starting 21 of his final 23 games…His numbers increased each of his three seasons in all major categories (11-173-2, 33-544-3, 53-917-8) and was an All-SEC selection in 2011…Has rare size and athleticism, which has drawn some comparisons to Randy Moss at Marshall…Has long arms, strong arms and good leaping ability to win one-on-one matchups…Has good strength to push off defenders trying to jam him…Has good body control and adjusts well to poorly thrown passes…Has double-moves to effectively set up defenders…Is thin and may need to add some bulk…Didn't have elite production and some question his learning curve heading to the next level and may need time…Doesn't give a consistent effort on every play…Will get lazy with his routes and allow defenders to close on the ball before it arrives…Doesn't have elite WR speed…Dropped too many passes…Ran a 4.55 40 at the Combine with a 31-inch vertical jump and a 10-1 broad jump. PROJECTION: A player we really like on film. He does a lot of things well, but isn't an elite prospect at any one facet of his game. Has the potential to be a very good pro, but given the depth and special abilities of the players rated ahead of him, he will likely last well into the second round. That being said, he's our choice for a sleeper with stardom potential that may end up being a steal for some team in the second round.

Mohamed Sanu, Rutgers, 6-2, 211 – Third-year junior who started 37 of 38 career games…Emerged in 2011, catching 115 passes for 1,206 yards and seven touchdowns – crushing the all-time Big East record of 92 catches held by Larry Fitzgerald…His 210 career receptions are a Big East record…Came to Rutgers as a safety prospect, but was quickly moved to wide receiver…Returned punts as a senior…A good combination of size and playing speed…Has good upper-body strength to get rid of jams off the snap…Has soft hands and makes just about every catch when he is targeted…Doesn't have alligator arms and will fight for catches over the middle, even if it means taking a big hit…Is a willing and aggressive blocker…Has good short-distance speed and burst off the snap…Doesn't have good sustained speed and will have trouble separating himself from defenders down the field…Is a little thin by NFL standards and will need to improve his functional game strength…Asked to do a lot of things, including taking snaps from the Wildcat and returning punts, but never became the master of any specialty…Doesn't have great timed speed, which will hurt his draft stock…Didn't play top competition…Ran a disappointing 4.67 40 at the Combine with a 36-inch vertical jump and a 10-6 broad jump. PROJECTION: A college overachiever who was able to mask his shortcomings and make the most of his positive attributes. He will likely be a second-round pick who may end up going higher than some of the players we have rated ahead of him. He has the potential to be a very strong No. 2 receiver, but may never be the go-to guy in an NFL offense.

THE BEST OF THE REST

Brian Quick, Appalachian State, 6-4, 220 – Fifth-year senior who redshirted in 2007 with a back injury…Became a starter as a sophomore and started 37 of 38 games in his final three seasons…Finished his career with 202 catches for 3,418 yards and 31 touchdowns…Saved his best for last, finishing 2011 with 71 catches for 1,096 yards and 11 touchdowns…Was recruited by several Division I programs, but to play basketball, not football…Has great size and can create mismatches…Picks up speed quickly and eliminates the CB cushion very quickly…Has long arms and good leaping ability…Makes a tough catch look easy…Is very raw and may need a couple of years to adjust to the pro game…Drops too many passes…Faced inferior competition that made him a man among boys…Is still learning the game, having played just one year of high school football…Didn't run a pro route tree in college…Ran a 4.55 40 at the Combine with a 34-inch vertical jump and a 10-3 broad jump. PROJECTION: The best small-college prospect in the draft, he has a lot of good intangibles that could help him develop into a strong pro, but may need to get drafted by a team that already has a couple of big-time veterans in place because he may take two or three years to reach his potential and that will likely drop him into the third or fourth round on draft weekend.

Marvin McNutt, Iowa, 6-3, 216 – Fifth-year senior…An acclaimed high school quarterback at St. Louis football powerhouse Hazelwood Central who moved to wide receiver during his redshirt season…A two-year full-time starter who caught 135 passes for 2,176 yards and 20 touchdowns in that span…Holds school records for yards in a season (1,315 in 2011) and career (2,861) and single-season TDs (12 in 2011) and career (28)…First-team All-Big 10 last year…Has long arms and a prototype NFL body…Has good upper-body strength and can beat jams at the line…Has excellent leaping ability and is aggressive, consistently winning one-on-one battles…Has good body control and shields off defenders well…Has big hands and uses them to pluck passes away from his body…Doesn't have great burst and needs three or four steps to get to top speed…Doesn't have a second gear…Is raw in terms of technique and route-running…Slows down when he cuts or changes direction…Isn't a strong blocker…Many view him as a one-trick slot receiver…Ran a 4.54 40 at the Combine with a 37-inch vertical jump and a 10-2 broad jump. PROJECTION: His main selling point is experience in a pro-style offense who improved each season. He looks to have an solid NFL career in front of him, but will likely be pigeon-holed into a West Coast Offense, which should drop him into the middle rounds of the draft.

Tommy Streeter, Miami, 6-5, 219 – Fourth-year senior who redshirted in 2008 with a wrist injury…In his first two seasons, he caught just six passes for 156 yards…As a junior, he caught 46 passes for 811 yards and eight touchdowns, leading the ACC with 17.6 yards per catch…Has ideal height and long arms…Has good acceleration and covers ground in a hurry, erasing the CB cushion in a hurry…Makes cuts extremely fast and uses his feet to get separation…Gains yardage after the catch…Showed he could be a big-play receiver…Doesn't have great strength and will struggle against jams…Doesn't pluck the ball and will let the ball into his body, leading to too many drops…Viewed by many as raw and not experienced enough to warrant high consideration…Is very thin and injuries could be a concern…Limited production and hasn't lived up to his potential to this point…Gets lazy in his route running…Ran an impressive 4.40 40 at the Combine with a 33-inch vertical jump and a 10-5 broad jump. PROJECTION: A one-year starter who may have done himself a lot of good by coming back for his senior year, he is a developmental project that, if he adds bulk and focuses on the little things wide receivers need to learn, he could become a dangerous threat. He will likely be on the board well into the third round and has a high ceiling but needs a lot of work, so he will likely be a prospect that is more potential than production.

Nick Toon, Wisconsin, 6-2, 215 – Fifth-year senior…Started 31 of 35 games his final three seasons, catching 154 passes for 2,190 yards and 17 touchdowns in that span…His father, Al Toon, was a standout at Wisconsin who went on to a long career with the New York Jets and is now on the board of directors of the Green Bay Packers…Is a big, physical receiver who gets off the line of scrimmage quickly and can beat jams…Has good body control and leaping ability to win one-on-one matchups…Catches passes away from his body consistently…Technically sound…Is an efficient blocker…Has a long list of nagging-type injuries that have knocked him out of games, making durability a significant question mark…Runs upright and gets redirected too easily and too often…Slows down into and out of his cuts…Doesn't have elite speed, burst or a second gear…Ran a 4.54 40 at the Combine with a 37½-inch vertical jump. Suffered a hamstring pull and didn't participate in the long jump. PROJECTION: A player with a solid bloodline, he is a solid receiver from a power conference who got better as his career progressed. However, he will likely never reach the heights his father, a former first-round pick, enjoyed in his career. His injury history may drop him into the third day of the draft. He will never be a go-to receiver but could have a long career as a reliable complementary receiving option.

Dwight Jones, North Carolina, 6-3, 230 – Fifth-year senior who spent 2007 at Hargrave Military Academy in Virginia…A two-year starter who caught 147 passes for 2,142 yards and 16 touchdowns in that span…A big, thickly built receiver with long arms and excellent functional playing strength…Picks up a lot of yards after the catch and can make tacklers miss…Has good body control and makes adjustments to the ball in the air…Is a willing an effective blocker…Plays too high and makes it too easy for defenders to get their hands on him and interrupt his routes…Doesn't have a lot of lateral quickness and typically runs streak routes with little in the way of double-moves…Drops too many catchable passes…Takes three or four strides to get to top speed…Doesn't always play with the same level of desire or fire…Ran a 4.55 40 at the Combine with a 33-inch vertical jump and a 9-1 broad jump. PROJECTION: At times, he looks like a first- or second-round prospect. At other times, he looks like a guy who would be lucky to get drafted. He has a lot of positive attributes that could help him develop into a solid 50-catch-a-year complementary receiver, but he has been as frustrating as any receiver in the draft. His inconsistency will likely drop him into the third day of the draft.

OTHERS TO WATCH
Joe Adams, Arkansas, 5-11, 179
Ryan Broyles, Oklahoma, 5-10, 192
Juron Criner, Arizona, 6-3, 224
Patrick Edwards, Houston, 5-9, 172
Jeff Fuller, Texas A&M, 6-4, 223
Chris Givens, Wake Forest, 5-11, 198
T.Y. Hilton, Florida International, 5-10, 183
A.J. Jenkins, Illinois, 6-0, 190
Keshawn Martin, Michigan State, 6-0, 188
Eric Page, Toledo, 5-9, 186
DeVier Posey, Ohio State, 6-2, 211
Jarius Wright, Arkansas, 5-10, 182
Devon Wylie, Fresno State, 5-9, 187


John Holler has been writing about the Vikings for more than a decade for Viking Update. Follow Viking Update on Twitter and discuss this story on our subscriber message board.

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\r\n\r\n","mobileBody":" The Class of 2012 is relatively good and deep at receiver. While Justin Blackmon is clearly at the head of the class, there are several specialist types that will come off the board in each of the first three rounds. By the time Day 2 comes to an end, there could be 10-12 wide receivers that have been taken. Given the increased emphasis on the passing games in the NFL, the need for wide receivers is constant. By the time the draft is over, most of the NFL's 32 teams are likely to grab at least one wide receiver – whether early or late. Percy Harvin, Michael Jenkins, Devin Aromashodu, Emmanuel Arceneaux, Stephen Burton, Bryan Walters, Kerry Taylor, Kris Adams. All one needs to do is take a look at the list of Vikings wide receivers and you will notice one thing very quickly – the team has one star in Harvin and a hodgepodge of mercenaries and bounce-around guys – none of whom are guaranteed a roster spot in September. The Vikings made a run at free agent Pierre Garcon, but bowed out when Daniel Snyder and the Redskins offered ridiculously big money (go figure). Harvin is the only star-quality player in this group, but he is best suited to play in the slot and not outside the hash marks. As things currently stand, wide receiver is a priority – either in what remains in free agency or the draft. It would be hard to figure out a way the Vikings don't take a WR in the second or third round of the draft because, quite simply, they need an impact player. Fortunately for them, there will still be talent on the board if they wait until the second or third round to address the position. Fourth-year senior…Two-year starter who dominated – catching a whopping 232 passes for 3,304 yards and 38 touchdowns in that span…Won the Biletnikoff Award the last two seasons – only Michael Crabtree won the award twice prior to him…A two-time All-American and All-Big 12 Offensive Player of the Year…A multi-sport standout in high school, he was an outstanding basketball player and won a long jump title…Is very physical and can beat the jam at the line and often create mismatches by shoving aggressive CBs off of him and getting them off-balance…Has strong hands and wins almost every jump-ball midair dogfight…Will fight for the ball in traffic and shows no fear…Picks up good yardage after the catch and can make people miss…Is a solid blocker when running plays come his way…Doesn't have sprinter's speed…Is not the prototype receiver in terms of height or vertical jump…Has some character concerns, including a couple off-field incidents and a DWI in 2010…Had too many drops of catchable passes and has lapses of concentration…Chose not to work out at the Combine. Head and shoulders the best college receiver in the game today, he won't make it past the first six or seven picks. Had the Rams not swung a deal, they could have taken him at No. 2 – he's that good. The only question mark about him is with the trappings of stardom and whether a huge paycheck will detract from his on-field ability. That's the only downside for an immensely talented player who should be on the Vikings' short list for potential picks at No. 3. Fourth-year senior…Started 41 of 44 career games, finishing his college career with 271 receptions for 3,686 yards and 37 TDs…Exploded in his final two seasons, catching 179 passes for 2,172 yards and 19 TDs, including 100-1,147-9 numbers in 2011…Missed six games in 2009 with a broken collarbone…A two-time Minnesota Gatorade Player of the Year in high school…Stripped of his team captain status after being arrested for drunk driving in March 2011, which came on the heels of being cited twice in Minnesota for underage drinking in 2009 and 2010…Has ideal size and strength, is arguably the best blocking receiver in the Class of 2012…Has drawn comparisons to Dwayne Bowe of the Chiefs with his size-speed combination…Makes the tough catch look easy…Doesn't allow balls to get into his body and consistently hand-catches passes…Has good ball skills and wins most one-on-one battles for jump balls…Is versatile, having lined up at several different receiver positions in college…Is not a blazing speedster who will blow past defenders…Isn't very consistent and will drop some easy passes…Injuries are somewhat of a concern having missed time in two of his four seasons…Rounds off some of his routes and will need to improve in that area of his game…Three alcohol-related arrests will be a big red flag for some teams…Ran a 4.47 40 at the Combine with a 36½-inch vertical jump and a 10-2 long jump. There is something to be said for blazing speed, but the metamorphosis of the modern-day NFL is that the big, physical receiver is the prototype for the future. Floyd has those qualities, which will see him come off the board in the first round. The questions now are where and when? He has some red flags that may get teams in the top 10 to back off, but his future is bright and whoever takes him will have a significant talent on their hands. Fourth-year senior…Started 42 of 50 career games…His numbers improved each of his four years with the Bears (50-649-5, 66-740-4, 78-952-7, 108-1,663-14)…A multi-sport athlete, he was a high school long jump and triple champion in Texas and played with the basketball team his freshman season…Led Baylor in receptions all four of his seasons…Was a first-team All-Big 12 and second-team All-America last year…Has incredible burst off the snap and gets up to top speed quickly…Has elite game speed and is a home-run hitter…Has good body control and wins almost every jump-ball situation he is in…Is strong and reminds some scouts of Carolina's Steve Smith…Is at his most dangerous in the open field and rarely dropped passes…Doesn't have ideal size or bulk and, thanks to Baylor's offense, didn't face much press coverage from cornerbacks – that will change…Ran a gimmicky offense that was based on timing and quick passes and didn't have to run a lot of the routes NFL receivers need to do, so he will need work…Despite being a four-year starter, is still raw in NFL terms…Hurt his stock significantly at the Combine by running a sub-par 4.61 40 at the Combine, but had a 38½-inch vertical jump and a 10-1 broad jump. A team leader and a fiery competitor who wants the ball, he may turn out to be the most dangerous receiver in this year's draft four or five years from now. His game needs refinement and he doesn't prototype size, but you can't teach speed and he has that like few others in this year's class…or even the last few years. Nobody is more dangerous with the ball in his hands in the open field, making him a first-round candidate. Third-year junior…Became a starter midway through his true freshman year and started 33 of 40 career games…Finished his career with 183 catches for 3,042 yards and 23 touchdowns…His numbers dropped markedly from 2010 (88-1,517-9) to 2011 (49-762-8)…Was the Gamecock's all-time leading receiver, posting more yards than Sterling Sharpe, Sidney Rice and Robert Brooks…One of just three SEC receivers to ever top 3,000 yards…Won four state high school basketball championships in South Carolina…His good size and strength and can create mismatches…Seemed to play his best against the top cornerbacks he faced…Uses size and strength to get a quick release and sheds defenders…Has the ability to consistently make the highlight-film catch, whether in traffic or a one-handed grab on a poorly thrown pass…Gained a lot yards after the catch…Doesn't have great speed and cost himself dearly at the Combine with slow times…Loses speed when making cuts or changing direction…Didn't run an NFL route tree and most of his routes were relatively simple timing patterns…Elected not to work out at the Combine. Has the size NFL scouts look for and projects to be a solid pro, but his poor 40 time at the Combine may knock him out of the first round. He could be a viable candidate to end up with the Vikings if they use a second-round pick on a receiver. Third-year junior…Became a starter early in his sophomore year, and started 22 of his last 25 games…Caught just 49 passes in 38 games, but was a home-run threat, averaging 25.5 yards per catch for his career, including a massive 29.3 yards a catch in 2011…Incredible size and can get bigger and stronger…Blazing speed that made him the talk of the Combine…Has incredible leaping ability and won the Georgia State long-jumping title with a jump of 25 feet, 9 inches, which would have placed him ninth in the last Olympics…Has long arms and big hands to win one-on-one battles…Was a willing and effective blocker who did a lot of it in the GT wishbone offense, often taking on linebackers…Wasn't asked to run NFL routes and was a one-trick pony in the Georgia Tech offense…Is skinny and will need to commit to the weight room to get stronger…Dropped way too many passes he could have caught and isn't a natural plucker who catches consistently with his hands…Very limited production in college…Slows down markedly when asked to cut or change his route…Impressive at the Combine with a sparkling 4.36 40, a 39½-inch vertical jump and an 11-1 broad jump – all at or near the top among those who worked out in Indianapolis. Perhaps the biggest roll of the dice in this year's draft class. He has a lot of qualities that scouts look for, but his lack of production reminds some of Troy Williamson, whom the Vikings fell in love with because of his speed, but his lack of pass-catching experience became painfully evident. He will get drafted higher than we have him ranked, but his boom-bust potential is too rich for our blood. He could easily go in the first round, but could end up being an expensive failed experiment. His Combine performance made him a lot of money, pushing him from a third-round prospect to a borderline first-rounder. Third-year junior…Became a starter a month into his sophomore season, starting 21 of his final 23 games…His numbers increased each of his three seasons in all major categories (11-173-2, 33-544-3, 53-917-8) and was an All-SEC selection in 2011…Has rare size and athleticism, which has drawn some comparisons to Randy Moss at Marshall…Has long arms, strong arms and good leaping ability to win one-on-one matchups…Has good strength to push off defenders trying to jam him…Has good body control and adjusts well to poorly thrown passes…Has double-moves to effectively set up defenders…Is thin and may need to add some bulk…Didn't have elite production and some question his learning curve heading to the next level and may need time…Doesn't give a consistent effort on every play…Will get lazy with his routes and allow defenders to close on the ball before it arrives…Doesn't have elite WR speed…Dropped too many passes…Ran a 4.55 40 at the Combine with a 31-inch vertical jump and a 10-1 broad jump. A player we really like on film. He does a lot of things well, but isn't an elite prospect at any one facet of his game. Has the potential to be a very good pro, but given the depth and special abilities of the players rated ahead of him, he will likely last well into the second round. That being said, he's our choice for a sleeper with stardom potential that may end up being a steal for some team in the second round. Third-year junior who started 37 of 38 career games…Emerged in 2011, catching 115 passes for 1,206 yards and seven touchdowns – crushing the all-time Big East record of 92 catches held by Larry Fitzgerald…His 210 career receptions are a Big East record…Came to Rutgers as a safety prospect, but was quickly moved to wide receiver…Returned punts as a senior…A good combination of size and playing speed…Has good upper-body strength to get rid of jams off the snap…Has soft hands and makes just about every catch when he is targeted…Doesn't have alligator arms and will fight for catches over the middle, even if it means taking a big hit…Is a willing and aggressive blocker…Has good short-distance speed and burst off the snap…Doesn't have good sustained speed and will have trouble separating himself from defenders down the field…Is a little thin by NFL standards and will need to improve his functional game strength…Asked to do a lot of things, including taking snaps from the Wildcat and returning punts, but never became the master of any specialty…Doesn't have great timed speed, which will hurt his draft stock…Didn't play top competition…Ran a disappointing 4.67 40 at the Combine with a 36-inch vertical jump and a 10-6 broad jump. A college overachiever who was able to mask his shortcomings and make the most of his positive attributes. He will likely be a second-round pick who may end up going higher than some of the players we have rated ahead of him. He has the potential to be a very strong No. 2 receiver, but may never be the go-to guy in an NFL offense. Fifth-year senior who redshirted in 2007 with a back injury…Became a starter as a sophomore and started 37 of 38 games in his final three seasons…Finished his career with 202 catches for 3,418 yards and 31 touchdowns…Saved his best for last, finishing 2011 with 71 catches for 1,096 yards and 11 touchdowns…Was recruited by several Division I programs, but to play basketball, not football…Has great size and can create mismatches…Picks up speed quickly and eliminates the CB cushion very quickly…Has long arms and good leaping ability…Makes a tough catch look easy…Is very raw and may need a couple of years to adjust to the pro game…Drops too many passes…Faced inferior competition that made him a man among boys…Is still learning the game, having played just one year of high school football…Didn't run a pro route tree in college…Ran a 4.55 40 at the Combine with a 34-inch vertical jump and a 10-3 broad jump. The best small-college prospect in the draft, he has a lot of good intangibles that could help him develop into a strong pro, but may need to get drafted by a team that already has a couple of big-time veterans in place because he may take two or three years to reach his potential and that will likely drop him into the third or fourth round on draft weekend. Fifth-year senior…An acclaimed high school quarterback at St. Louis football powerhouse Hazelwood Central who moved to wide receiver during his redshirt season…A two-year full-time starter who caught 135 passes for 2,176 yards and 20 touchdowns in that span…Holds school records for yards in a season (1,315 in 2011) and career (2,861) and single-season TDs (12 in 2011) and career (28)…First-team All-Big 10 last year…Has long arms and a prototype NFL body…Has good upper-body strength and can beat jams at the line…Has excellent leaping ability and is aggressive, consistently winning one-on-one battles…Has good body control and shields off defenders well…Has big hands and uses them to pluck passes away from his body…Doesn't have great burst and needs three or four steps to get to top speed…Doesn't have a second gear…Is raw in terms of technique and route-running…Slows down when he cuts or changes direction…Isn't a strong blocker…Many view him as a one-trick slot receiver…Ran a 4.54 40 at the Combine with a 37-inch vertical jump and a 10-2 broad jump. His main selling point is experience in a pro-style offense who improved each season. He looks to have an solid NFL career in front of him, but will likely be pigeon-holed into a West Coast Offense, which should drop him into the middle rounds of the draft. Fourth-year senior who redshirted in 2008 with a wrist injury…In his first two seasons, he caught just six passes for 156 yards…As a junior, he caught 46 passes for 811 yards and eight touchdowns, leading the ACC with 17.6 yards per catch…Has ideal height and long arms…Has good acceleration and covers ground in a hurry, erasing the CB cushion in a hurry…Makes cuts extremely fast and uses his feet to get separation…Gains yardage after the catch…Showed he could be a big-play receiver…Doesn't have great strength and will struggle against jams…Doesn't pluck the ball and will let the ball into his body, leading to too many drops…Viewed by many as raw and not experienced enough to warrant high consideration…Is very thin and injuries could be a concern…Limited production and hasn't lived up to his potential to this point…Gets lazy in his route running…Ran an impressive 4.40 40 at the Combine with a 33-inch vertical jump and a 10-5 broad jump. A one-year starter who may have done himself a lot of good by coming back for his senior year, he is a developmental project that, if he adds bulk and focuses on the little things wide receivers need to learn, he could become a dangerous threat. He will likely be on the board well into the third round and has a high ceiling but needs a lot of work, so he will likely be a prospect that is more potential than production. Fifth-year senior…Started 31 of 35 games his final three seasons, catching 154 passes for 2,190 yards and 17 touchdowns in that span…His father, Al Toon, was a standout at Wisconsin who went on to a long career with the New York Jets and is now on the board of directors of the Green Bay Packers…Is a big, physical receiver who gets off the line of scrimmage quickly and can beat jams…Has good body control and leaping ability to win one-on-one matchups…Catches passes away from his body consistently…Technically sound…Is an efficient blocker…Has a long list of nagging-type injuries that have knocked him out of games, making durability a significant question mark…Runs upright and gets redirected too easily and too often…Slows down into and out of his cuts…Doesn't have elite speed, burst or a second gear…Ran a 4.54 40 at the Combine with a 37½-inch vertical jump. Suffered a hamstring pull and didn't participate in the long jump. A player with a solid bloodline, he is a solid receiver from a power conference who got better as his career progressed. However, he will likely never reach the heights his father, a former first-round pick, enjoyed in his career. His injury history may drop him into the third day of the draft. He will never be a go-to receiver but could have a long career as a reliable complementary receiving option. Fifth-year senior who spent 2007 at Hargrave Military Academy in Virginia…A two-year starter who caught 147 passes for 2,142 yards and 16 touchdowns in that span…A big, thickly built receiver with long arms and excellent functional playing strength…Picks up a lot of yards after the catch and can make tacklers miss…Has good body control and makes adjustments to the ball in the air…Is a willing an effective blocker…Plays too high and makes it too easy for defenders to get their hands on him and interrupt his routes…Doesn't have a lot of lateral quickness and typically runs streak routes with little in the way of double-moves…Drops too many catchable passes…Takes three or four strides to get to top speed…Doesn't always play with the same level of desire or fire…Ran a 4.55 40 at the Combine with a 33-inch vertical jump and a 9-1 broad jump. At times, he looks like a first- or second-round prospect. At other times, he looks like a guy who would be lucky to get drafted. 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