In the month leading up to the 2014 NFL Draft, NewYorkJets.com is taking a look at some of the top draft prospects position-by-position.
We will kick off our series with wide receivers. On Thursday, we will continue our series with the cornerbacks.
EA Take: Barring something miraculous, Watkins won’t slip beyond the top 10 selections. In fact, the Rams could take him as high as No. 2 overall. You have to score to win in this league and Watkins is a burner who is dynamite after the catch. He is a hands catcher who can line up all over the field — on the outside, in the slot and in the backfield.
EA Take: Evans possesses a big body and can catch the rock without much/any separation. After playing two years with Jonny Manziel at Texas A&M, Evans will be challenged by bigger, more physical corners on the pro level. When the field shrinks in the red zone, you need imposing targets who can make plays when called upon and Evans is an intriguing prospect.
EA Take: The return ability is a huge bonus and that makes Beckham a complete package. New Jets special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey is very familiar with Beckham’s ability on special teams after spending the past three years in Baton Rouge, LA. Beckham will have to get stronger, but he has the hops to go up and get the rock.
EA Take: People are sleeping on Lee after an injury-plagued season at Sothern California. In 2012, Lee led FBX in receptions with 118 and he had eight 100-plus yard performances. How much will teams be concerned about his durability? Lee is a good athlete and a solid route runner. He plays faster than his 40 would indicate and he has long arms.
EA Take: The speed is outstanding, but the production is just as impressive. Love the nickname “Sonic Boom” and Cooks is a confident cat who believes he is the best wideout in this class. Didn’t really do much in the return game on the collegiate level, but Cooks has been durable and he doesn’t need much space to make something exciting happen.
EA Take: It will be interesting to compare the pro careers of Evans and Benjamin. The latter is definitely more of a project, but Benjamin could find his way into the late first-round due to his upside. Has been prone to drop the ball and has to get better catching the rock with his hands. But Benjamin is a physical mismatch and he can really soar to high-point it.
EA Take: The dude is a football player. He did his damage in the SEC, so it wasn’t like he could hide anywhere playing for the Commodores. Most will label Matthews a possession receiver, but then he went out and ran a 4.46 in Indy. Matthews, who is a cousin of Jerry Rice, loves the game and will be a high character person in your locker room. He wasn’t as sure-handed as the stats would lead you to believe and some of his catches were product of the quick game.
EA Take: The measurables are mediocre, but the intangibles are excellent. Landry, a Tigers team captain, has experience covering kickoffs and he is as sure-handed as they come. Play the tape and he was always coming up big on third down for the Bayou Bengals. Landry can help himself big-time with a solid pro day performance this week.
EA Take: In just two seasons as a starter at Penn State, Robinson nearly reached 2,500 yards receiving. He can go up and get contested balls (Penn State/Michigan 4 OT thriller is a good watch) and possesses good hands. Not quick or speedy, Robinson has to get better in the blocking department.
EA Take: Put up crazy numbers at Fresno, teaming up with Derek Carr. But Adams won’t be able to get by with just pure athleticism on the next level. He could become more of a possession receiver in the pros and the former basketball recruit often displayed a propensity for winning battles for the ball.
EA Take: Had 17 catches of 20-plus yards last season and averaged 22.1 yards per catch at Clemson. A project who excels down the field, Bryant has to work on his route running and hands.
EA Take: Rebounding from a torn ACL, Richardson regained his explosiveness his junior year and declared for the draft. Father, Paul Sr. played with the Jets and his namesake has an extra gear.