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OSU's Washington stands out among WRs

Wed, Feb 28, 2018

Executive Director Phil Savage spent 20 years in the National Football League as a coach, scout, executive and general manager. Prior to the Combine, he will evaluate the Reese’s Senior Bowl practice sessions and game, position-by-position, for both the North and South squads.

Thus far, the quarterbacks, running backs, fullbacks and tight ends have been reviewed as we build out our mythical Reese’s All-Senior Bowl team. With thirteen wide receivers providing a cross-section of talent, we divided them into three styles of play and list the top three in each category here:

“Combination” Inside/Outside Types

#28 James Washington/Oklahoma St (S) 5107/210  H-9 5/8            A-33 7/8          WS-77 6/8
Built like a running back, James uses his core strength, play speed and long arms to win inside as a slot or outside as a split end. During the week, he made a number of contested catches underneath and then had the acceleration to go over the top of the defense, too. James is a “football player” first and “wide receiver” second, and that is meant as a strong compliment. He had an amazing set of 1-on-1’s and won 16 out of 17 reps, proving himself to be one of the best prospects in the game. 

1-on-1 Pass Routes-    Wins: 16          Losses: 1

Reese’s Pieces: James posted three consecutive 1,000-yard seasons for the Cowboys and finished his career with 226 receptions for 4472 yards (19.8avg) and 39 touchdowns.

#84 Michael Gallup/Colorado St (N)  6007/198        H-9 1/8            A-30 7/8          WS-74 5/8
This productive, two-year starter has the skill to play with power when pressed and speed when given room to takeoff. Although there was a degree of inconsistency during his week, he appears to be a prospect with tons of NFL potential. He is physical at the line and with the football in his hands after the catch. 

1-on-1 Pass Routes-    Wins: 4            Losses: 8

Reese’s Pieces: After transferring from Butler Community College, Michael enjoyed an amazing two years at CSU where he hauled in 176 passes for 2685 yards (15.3avg) and 21 touchdowns, while earning consensus All-American honors in 2017.

#4 Tre’Quan Smith/UCF (S)                6015/202        H-9                  A-34 4/8          WS-79 5/8
Tre’Quan has a lean build with long arms and showed the versatility of playing in the slot or on the outside. He has sneaky downfield speed and uses his body length to gain position on defenders and then grab the football in traffic. In the RSB game, he posted 5 grabs for 79 yards and a touchdown in helping the South to a 45-16 victory.

1-on-1 Pass Routes-    Wins: 8            Losses: 8

Reese’s Pieces: An underclassman graduate, Tre’Quan had three very consistent seasons for the Golden Knights by catching 168 passes for 2748 yards (16.4avg) and 22 touchdowns.

“Outside” Vertical Speed/Power Forward Types

#7 D.J. Chark/LSU (S)                          6025/196        H-9 2/8            A-33                WS-78 7/8
D.J. is the definition of a perimeter speed merchant who can knock the top off of a defense. While he struggled some in separating from man-to-man coverage during the week, he showcased his big play ability in the game when he accounted for 160 yards on 5 catches with 1 touchdown as the South totaled 425 yards passing and he won Co-Most Outstanding Player honors along with RB Rashaad Penny.

1-on-1 Pass Routes-    Wins: 3            Losses: 14

Reese’s Pieces: D.J. averaged a whopping 20.5 yards per catch on 66 career receptions with 6 going the distance at LSU. He also returned 18 punts for 190 yards (10.6avg) and 2 more touchdowns.

#13 Marcell Ateman/Oklahoma St (S)     6042/216       H-9                  A-33 5/8          WS-78 2/8
This proverbial big-bodied receiver is a house on the perimeter because of his overall size and catching radius. Especially dangerous in the red zone, he really has a feel for “rebounding” the football in close quarters.

1-on-1 Pass Routes-    Wins: 8            Losses: 8

Reese’s Pieces: Always somewhat overshadowed by James Washington at OSU, he still put together some impressive career numbers with 146 catches for 2,466 yards (16.9avg) and 13 touchdowns.

#85 Allen Lazard/Iowa State (N)        6042/227        H-9 7/8            A-32 4/8          WS-78 6/8
The biggest receiver in the mix, Allen is a powerhouse on the edges of the defense because of his size, strength and catching radius. He can overwhelm smaller defensive backs by gaining body position on the inside or elevating for the football in the red zone.

1-on-1 Pass Routes-    Wins: 7            Losses: 9

Reese’s Pieces: This two-time first team All-Big 12 performer accumulated 241 receptions for 3,360 yards (13.9avg) and 26 touchdowns in becoming the school’s all-time leader in catches and yards.

“Inside” Slot Types

#5 DaeSean Hamilton/Penn St (N)     6006/202        H-9 2/8            A-32 5/8          WS-76 2/8
After performing well at the East-West Shrine, DaeSean earned an invite to the RSB and had an exceptional week of practice. He showed instincts, route savvy, quickness and hands in distinguishing himself as a top-flight slot receiver.

1-on-1 Pass Routes-    Wins: 11          Losses: 5

Reese’s Pieces: DaeSean burst on the scene as a true freshman in 2014 with 82 catches for the Nittany Lions. He concluded his career with 214 receptions for 2,842 yards (13.3avg) and 18 touchdowns

#15 Justin Watson/Penn (N)              6025/213        H-9 6/8 (left)  A-33 6/8          WS-78 1/8
Like Hamilton, Justin played well at the East-West Shrine game and received a call up to the RSB. He has a strong build to play inside and the hands to make catches with defenders near him. Not quite as accomplished as Eastern Washington’s Cooper Kupp from last year, but has some similar traits with regard to instincts, hands and production.

1-on-1 Pass Routes-    Wins: 7            Losses: 5

Reese’s Pieces: Justin became the first player in Ivy League history to catch a pass in all 40 of his career games. Ultimately, he set school records for receptions (286), receiving yardage (3777) and touchdowns (33).

#8 Braxton Berrios/Miami-FL (N)      5085/177        H-9 2/8            A-28 1/8          WS-68
One of the toughest players on either team, Braxton suffered a rib contusion on Tuesday and insisted on continuing to practice and play in the game. He has obvious short area quickness and competes for every pass thrown his way. With his punt return skills, he has a chance to get on the field as a rookie in 2018. 

1-on-1 Pass Routes-    Wins: 5            Losses: 6

Reese’s Pieces: Braxton had a breakout senior season for the Hurricanes with 55 receptions for 679 yards (12.3avg) and 14 touchdowns. He closed out his career with 47 punt returns for a 10.4-yard average and 1 touchdown.