2012 NFL SCOUTING COMBINE AND NFL DRAFT OVERVIEW – Wide Receivers
SUPER SCOUT MAX EMFINGER
SUPER SCOUT MAX EMFINGER
The upcoming 2012 NFL Draft will be loaded with potential All-Pro wide receiver prospects and at least 10 of the top 16 wide receivers are at least 6-2 or better with great speed. I think that there are at least six or seven wide receivers who could go in the first round. There are three wide receivers who are definite first rounders, including Justin Blackmon, Michael Floyd, and Kendall Wright.
Then there are two or three other categories. The first category is potential first round draft choices, including Reuben Randle, A.J. Jenkins, and surprise Stephen Hill; and then the third category includes Super Combine Freaks that could be drafted in the first round, including Greg Childs and Tommy Streeter. I don’t think that all seven wide receivers will be Drafted in the First Round, but all seven certainly have the potential to be Drafted in the First Round and their MEARS RATINGS will place them in the Top 50 players in the Draft.
One of the most extraordinary wide receivers in the upcoming 2012 NFL Draft is Justin Blackmon. We all have been watching Blackmon make huge plays after huge plays for Oklahoma State for at least three years and in the clutch, there are very few players in the country who can match him. Blackmon, however, is not the only wide receiver Super Star in this NFL Draft.
Some NFL Scouts have questioned his overall top-end speed and at the NFL Super Combine, Blackmon ran some 4.5’s which proved that those NFL Scouts might know something. Although he won Back-to-Back Fred Biletnikoff Awards as the NCAA outstanding wide receiver, his average per catch was only 12.5 yards per catch. One reason that his yards per catch average was low was because on every passing play, he was double and triple-teamed and he still was able to made the big catch for the Cowboys. Blackmon also won the Paul Warfield Award as being the great Playmaker.
At Oklahoma State Pro-Day, Blackmon (6-1, 207, 4.42) impressed all of the NFL Scouts when he recorded a couple of forties in the low 4.4’s, including a 4.42, and a 4.46. Blackmon also did an outstanding 123 Standing Broad Jump, putting to rest any questions about his speed and athletic ability. The NFL Scouts were treated to a great pass-catching show by Blackmon as he put on a real show as he caught every pass that was thrown. His 1,947 MEARS RATING is one of the Top MEARS RATINGS of all wide receivers.
We also have been watching Michael Floyd for three or four years and he might be the first wide receiver selected in this NFL Draft. Floyd is bigger than Blackmon and he is just as athletic and is another phenomenal “Playmaker” at wide receiver. When Floyd is Drafted in the First Round, he will become the first Notre Dame wide receiver since 1987 Heisman Trophy Winner Tim Brown was drafted in the 1988 NFL Draft.
As a junior, Floyd was pretty impressive as he grabbed 85 passes for 1,245-yards and 16 touchdowns. Floyd had a pretty good day at the NFL Super Combine, but he was even better at the Notre Dame Pro-Day when he had his old quarterback and friend Jimmy Clausen of the Carolina Panthers throwing passes to him. Floyd made some very impressive catches from Clausen and the NFL Scouts were very impressed. It felt like old times for both Floyd and Clausen as they hooked-up on some really great completions.
Floyd was sensational for a couple of years when Clausen was his quarterback at Notre Dame, but he ran into some off-the-field problems as a junior. After his junior year, he could have declared for the 2011 NFL Draft, but he decided to come back for his senior season in 2011 and get ready for the 2012 NFL Draft. It was a great move and now Floyd (6-3, 220, 4.42) will probably be picked early in the First Round, along with Blackmon. His 1.960 MEARS RATING is outstanding.
Kendall Wright (5-11, 196, 4.41) of Baylor made some incredible catches from Heisman Trophy Winner Robert Griffin in the last few years and he ended his career as the Baylor All-Time Career pass-catching yards leader with 4,004 career pass-receiving yards. In four years, Wright broke 10 Baylor wide receiver records, including 1,663-yards; 14 touchdowns; and nine 100-yard games as a senior in 2011.
In the 10th game of the season, the Baylor Bears picked up their seventh win when they got an impressive UPSET victory over #5 Oklahoma. Robert Griffin was simply sensational with another legendary performance. In the third quarter, RG III completed an 87-yard touchdown pass to Kendall Wright that tied the score at 24-24. This touchdown pass, from Griffin to Wright, was one of the most incredible touchdown catches in the history of college football. The football was thrown to another receiver who tipped the football twenty-yards down the field where Wright caught the football on the dead run to complete the 87-yard touchdown. Baylor finished with 616-yards of total offense for the game, including 208-yards by Wright.
With all of these amazing feats, all of the NFL Scouts were very disappointed when Wright only ran a 4.61 in the forty at the NFL Super Combine. Wright was a Super Combine Freak in High School as he recorded a rare 40-inch vertical jump and ran a 4.3 in the forty, so it was disappointing when he only did a 4.61 at the Combine. Then, Wright made the NFL Scouts happy at the Baylor Pro-Day when he recorded a couple 4.4’s in the forty; did a 38.5 vertical jump; ran a 4.18 in the pro-shuttle; and did a 121 Standing Broad Jump, giving him an excellent 1,937 MEARS RATING.
Before his senior season in High School, Reuben Randle had already been the MVP of two State Championship games and he had no peers at wide receiver in the State of Louisiana. He was a big “Playmaker” for Bastrop, one of the most dominating teams in the South; and he had offers from most all of the Major BCS College teams in the South, including LSU, Alabama, Miami, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Florida State, Georgia, Ole Miss, and Mississippi State. Then as a senior, Randle moved to quarterback and led Bastrop to the Semi-Finals and a 11-2 record. In that senior season, Randle passed for 2,461-yards and 20 touchdowns.
Randle signed with LSU and he was looking forward to a fabulous future in catching passes for one of the most dominating teams in the country. The only problem was that the LSU Tigers changed their offensive scheme from a passing team in 2007, when they won the BCS National Championship with a pro-passing attack to a more conservative, but dominatant running attack.
With all of this unbelievable and untapped potential, but on a running team, there were many times that Randle was standing in the clear for the unthrown pass. Even on passing plays, there were many times that Randle was seen standing in the clear. Even on a running team, Randle led that team in receptions with 55 catches for 1,058-yards and 11 touchdowns. His 19.2 yards per catch, as a junior in 2011, is as good as any other wide receiver in the 2012 NFL Draft and his vast potential might be even greater. Randle did not do really well at the NFL Super Combine, but he put-up some great measurables at a couple workouts, including LSU Pro-Day. Randle (6-3, 212, 4.42) has recorded a good 1,929 MEARS RATING.
Greg Childs and Stephen Hill have emerged as Super Combine Freaks and with their incredible measurables, that they have recorded, they both must be considered as a #1 or #2 Draft Choice. Childs was a Sophomore Sensation in 2009 as he grabbed 48 passes for 894-yards and seven touchdowns. He was so good, and he led all SEC receivers with a 23-yards per catch average. On 23 of his 48 catches, Childs gained a first down. His future was fabulous, but he injured his ankle in 2010 and he never really was able to go full-speed again. Childs battled these injuries from the 2010 season and he was never really full-speed as a senior in 2011. A glympse of his old self occurred in Week #9 in 2011, when Childs caught five passes for 176-yards and scored two touchdowns.
Childs (6-3, 212, 4.39) is a Super Combine Freak as he did a 36.5 Vertical Jump at the Super Combine, but then he improved it to a 40.5 at Arkansas Pro-Day. Childs also improved his Standing Broad Jump from 125 to 127 on Arkansas Pro-Day and he ran a 4.09 in the pro shuttle, making him the only wide receiver in the 2012 NFL Draft that is in the 40-40 Club with 40’s in the vertical jump and pro-shuttle. With these measurables, Childs leads all wide receivers with an incredible 1,999 MEARS RATING.
If you think that Randle was always standing in the clear at LSU, put yourself in the shoes of Stephen Hill at Georgia Tech. Hill is a wide receiver who plays for a team that runs the Triple-Option Offense. The Yellow Jackets do throw the football and when they do, the wide receiver that is in the clear can really do some damage to a defense that is gearing for the run.
Everyone remembers Super Wide Receiver Calvin Johnson, who was a 2007 NFL #1 Draft Choice and he averaged 15.8 yards per catch. Then in 2008, wide Receiver Demaryius Thomas averaged 16.1 yards per catch. In 2009, Thomas broke his own record with 46 catches for 1,154-yards and a school record 25.1 yards per catch average. In that same 2009 year, True Freshman Hill caught 6 passes for 137-yards and a nice 22.8-yards per catch. Thomas decided to enter the 2010 NFL Draft and was a 2010 NFL #1 Draft Choice.
In 2010, with unbelievable speed and athletic ability, Hill was expected to take over for Thomas and have a huge season, but he dropped as many passes as he caught. Hill did finish strong and finished with a very respectable 19.4 yards per catch, but he did miss the Independence Bowl because of Academics.
With only 49 catches in three years before opting for the 2012 NFL Draft, Hill (6-4, 215, 4.36) is still is a potential NFL First Round Draft Choice and the third Yellow Jackets #1 Draft Choice in the last six years. He really put on a show for the NFL Scouts as he measured 6-4 and weighed 215 while running a blistering 4.36; did a 39.5 vertical jump; and did a great 133 Standing Broad Jump. With these outstanding measurables, Hill recorded a great 1,945 MEARS RATING.
There are very few wide receivers that are 6-5 and run a 4.4 in the forty, but there is at least one in Tommy Streeter. He is definitely a Freak of Nature to be this tall and to be able to run this fast. Streeter of the University of Miami is also a Super Combine Freak with outstanding measurables, including a 36 vertical jump; a 4.4 in the forty; a 125 in the Standing Broad Jump; and 17 reps of 225 on the bench press.
Streeter was a sensational wide receiver in high school when he played at crosstown Miami Northwestern. As a junior in high school, Streeter caught 57 passes for 804-yards and 14 touchdowns and then he caught 36 passes for 676-yards and 11 scores as a senior and averaged 18.8 yards per catch. In 2011, as a junior, Streeter grabbed 46 passes for 811-yards and averaged 17.6 yards per catch. With these great measurables, Streeter has opted to go to the NFL as a junior and he has recorded a great 1,931 MEARS RATING.