As the NFL continues to rely heavily on the passing game, the incoming wide receiver class is one of the most talked about positions heading into the draft. This year is no different. What is different about this class, however, is there doesn’t seem to be a true number one. This class doesn’t have an Amari Cooper or a Julio Jones that teams are salivating over. There could be some reaching early to grab the top guys in this class come April which will make for a compelling few days. Here are the Top 5 Wide Receivers in the NFL Draft.
Top 5 Wide Receivers In The NFL Draft
1. Calvin Ridley– Alabama
For most of the season, he was the clear-cut number one guy in everyone’s mind. He is the top receiver in this class, but as mentioned earlier, there isn’t a stud in this draft that warrants a top 10 pick. Ridley should be a top 10 pick but it will be a reach for a WR2 type player. Ridley is a smooth runner, his breaks are clean and he can create separation with his quickness. His lack of physicality may be an issue as he struggles against press coverage. He doesn’t like getting bumped at the line which leads to him being thrown off his routes. This deficiency will need to be addressed as defenders will become more physical with him at the next level. His stats at Alabama weren’t great, but this is mostly due to the terrible QB play he had to put up with all year.
Landing Spots: Bears, Dolphins, Ravens
2. James Washington– Oklahoma State
For teams looking for a true vertical threat, look no further than James Washington. This guy just finds a way to make the big play. Yes, he played against Big 12 defenses, but that shouldn’t take away from the fact that he has legit deep threat speed, and can track and adjust to the ball better than anyone in this class. He is quick off the line which will allow him to beat press coverage and he has the ability to use a subtle push-off move to create separation. He will need to expand his route tree and will need to work on making cleaner breaks.
Landing Spots: Ravens. Panthers, Saints
3. D.J. Moore– Maryland
Moore is beginning to gain steam and his stock is rising. Maryland went through three different quarterbacks in 2017 but he still managed to put up 1,033yds and 8 TDs. Moore may be better suited in the slot with his quickness and clean route running. Moore is listed just under 6′ so he is on the shorter side, but with more teams targeting the slot, he certainly has value. He has an ability to find space with the ball in his hands and can turn a short gain into a highlight reel with ease. Teams will need him to be more consistent with high pointing the ball and not allowing it to get into his body. Moore could end up being a steal in this draft if he finds himself in the right situation.
Landing Spots: Packers, Bears, Saints, 49ers
4. Courtland Sutton– SMU
This could be the riskiest player in the top five. Sutton has shown that he plays up or down to his competition, and that could be an issue with NFL coaching staffs. He dominates in one on one coverage, has excellent ball skills and can adjust when needed. Sutton is a big, physical athlete with great hands who looks the part of a number one option in the NFL. He will need to improve his route running to create separation at the next level.
Landing Spots: Ravens, Washington, Cowboys
5. Deon Cain– Clemson
A prototypical number one option. He attacks the ball in the air but has had issues with drops. These drops come from a lack of focus as he turns his head upfield too quickly. These issues must be fixed at the next level if Cain is to succeed on Sundays. If Cain can tweak the little things he could be a starter in the league for years to come.
Landing Spots: Packers, Jaguars, Panthers
Dark Horse: Anthony Miller-Memphis
Miller has quickness and vision that will allow him to find a home in the NFL. He has the ability to beat press coverage with quickness and head fakes. Teams may fall in love with his big-play ability and could take him earlier than he is projected. Drops have been an issue, but with NFL coaching it is an issue that can be cleaned up with little effort.
Landing Spots: Washington, Kansas City, 49ers, Raiders, Dolphins