Spoiler: The 2020 WR draft class is very good.
Reality: Eagles need a ton of help at WR.
It’s to rank all these super-talented players in an order of what fits the Eagles’ needs the best.
1a Jerry Jeudy, Alabama
So basically, trying to decide between the top three options for the Eagles is incredibly hard as each player is extremely gifted and seems primed for success in the NFL. But I’m putting Jeudy at 1a.
What i keep coming back to is his route running, which is unmatched. The snap cuts on both inside and outside breaking routes, the suddenness, adjusting his body naturally at the catch point, and ability to make every route look smooth is unique. He sells his routes better than any WR in the draft – and, frankly, any WR I’ve seen in recent years.
Jeudy didn’t jump out of the screen at the combine, and his 4.45 and 120 inch broad were somewhat expected numbers. He flashes in his speed in between cuts and finesse in running routes – not in simply outrunning people.
Despite having heavy competition for Ruggs, Smith, and Waddle, he still managed to put up back-to-back 1000+ yard seasons, and even then I’d say his skill doesn’t match his production. If Jeudy is anywhere close to 15, I’d look for Eagles to trade up in an instant.
1b Henry Ruggs, Alabama
No need to say much about Ruggs. He is arguably the most athletically gifted player in the draft.
Running a 4.27 forty and jumping 42 inches needs no explanation – and it matches the tape perfectly.
Ruggs has what Eagles need the most – speed, the ability to take it to the house on any play. He has played outside and inside WR. He has some finesse to his routes, and is more than just a quick wideout.
Fast players just always go early in the draft, and the buzz around Ruggs may just be enough for Eagles to not have a shot. Unless Howie decides to roll the dice and move up once again.
1c Ceedee Lamb, Oklahoma
Big production, precise route runner, and a YAC ability the Eagles could really use, Lamb presents yet another great option.
Lamb reminds me, in a lot of ways, of Jeudy. Almost the same height around 6’1-6’2, same weight in the 190s lbs, both tremendous route runners, secure hands, and big play ability.
The distance from Jeudy to Ruggs to Lamb is minor. Probably it comes down to small individual evaluation aspects, and even what day it is. I can go back and forth in my head deciding which of these guys are most ideal for Eagles, but honestly, landing any of them would be a difference-maker for Wentz’s career.
4 Denzel Mims, Baylor
No good WRs have ever come out of Baylor, right?
Well that’s about to change. Denzel Mims caught my eye, like so many others, after the senior bowl, where he tore it up. I was pleasantly surprised going through his tape afterward.
In my notes, I wrote: ‘excellent blocker. Rare good lean against press when gaining leverage for deeper routes. Cuts effectively and aggressively on curl and comeback routes. Usually catches contested catches safely over the middle. Big body frame with good positioning. Decent YAC ability.
Mims is not a burner and does have some ugly drops once in a while. Further, although he is excellent on some routes, his route tree is a bit limited.
Add arguably the best senior bowl performance, a killer combine highlighted by a 4.38 forty and insane 6.66 sec 3-cone, Mims is shooting up draft boards. He could very well end up being pick #21.
5 Justin Jefferson, LSU
I have to be honest here. My initial meeting with Jefferson was when I saw the LSU video of “get the gat” at the white house… and i loved it.
Then I went back and watched the video of the 2-year starter. Jefferson was a star in 2019, coming up with an insane 1,500 yards and 18 TDs.
Jefferson separates from the rest of the class with his hands. He catches everything. High, low, behind him, thrown late, with no reaction time. Pulls it all in. He blocks really well. Not a burner but has above-average speed and an ability to stop and start on the spot. Elevates nicely and positions himself well for the ball.
My few knocks on Jefferson are that he was mostly used in the slot, doesn’t have convincing separation on deep routes and mostly won on positioning, and finally has times where he is overmanned in press.
Rankings continued on page 2 below.
Photo Credit: AP Photo/Vasha Hunt