WR Josh Malone, Tennessee*

6’3” – 208 lbs. – 4.40

Was a six-game starter as a true freshman, then became a full-time starter in his sophomore year and reprised that role as a junior before declaring for the draft. Has excellent height and solid bulk for the position, although his arms measured just under 31.5” at the Combine, which isn’t outstanding. Typically lines up split out wide to the left, but will also take snaps from the right side or from the slot. Long-strider who was asked to run a lot of routes downfield in order to pull the coverage away from underneath passes. Didn’t look like a major threat to get separation deep on tape, but ran well at the Combine, suggesting he could be targeted on more long balls at the pro level. Has a pretty simple route tree at this point; during the games reviewed, made a lot of his catches underneath against zone coverage on patterns like hitches, drag routes, and so on; the team liked to send him in motion and then have him drag back across the formation. Was most effective on timing-based throws. Enough sharpness out of his cuts to get inside positioning on posts, etc. Pretty good at tracking the ball over his shoulder downfield. Frame is big enough to shield defenders from the ball but could be more aggressive about working back. Offers a solid catch radius, and is able to pluck the ball away from his body with what look like reliable hands; will occasionally get lazy and try to pin the ball to his body. Not a particularly dynamic runner after the catch, relying more on shake than physicality, but has some strength to run through the occasional arm tackle and doesn’t waste much time getting upfield. Gives good effort and aggression as a blocker and has the physical tools to be effective there, but seems to have occasional trouble with his focus and positioning when stalking; will look back for the ball and let opponents get past him. A height-weight-speed prospect with reliable hands and the temperament to become an effective blocker, but who doesn’t play quite as fast as his timed speed and is coming from an offense which gave him a very simple route tree and which was predicated predominantly on checkdowns and short passes. Will need to spend some time diversifying his repertoire of patterns as a reserve, but figures to come off the board around the middle of the third day as a developmental prospect with upside.

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