WR Chase Claypool, Notre Dame

6’4” – 238 lbs.

Caught five passes as a freshman, then saw his role expand to 29-402-2 (13.9) the following year. Has been a major contributor ever since, going 50-639-4 (12.8) and then breaking out to the tune of 66-1,037-13 (15.7) as a senior. One of the biggest receivers in this year’s class, checking all the boxes in terms of size. Lines up split out to either side of the offense, and will occasionally motion down tighter to the formation. Route tree was relatively simple during the games reviewed. Runs a lot of in and out routes, both shorter and deeper, but can also challenge the seams and ran plenty of drag over the middle, with some tunnel screens sprinkled in. A good athlete for his size, with some explosiveness to his movements and the ability to create windows over the top; many of his patterns were designed to get him the ball with some room to work with, taking advantage of his no-nonsense approach to picking up yards after the catch. Tended to see off-coverage, with a little bit of extra motion at times when releasing against press-man; looks better on inside releases. Gives some effort to sinking his hips as a route runner, although he doesn’t have the cleanest footwork at the route stem; a lot of his production came against off-man and zones and might struggle to gain separation out of his breaks against more aggressive coverage at the next level. Runs deep routes with some nuance; able to create leverage and use his frame to keep defenders in his hip pocket. Overall ball skills are impressive. Offers a wide catch radius, with very good body control to adjust to throws away from his frame; capable of pirouetting and bringing in back-shoulder throws. Demonstrates good awareness and footwork when working near the sideline. Does a good job of attacking passes at the high point and looks like a possible red-zone weapon. Was a pretty reliable receiver during the games reviewed, but does have something of a tendency to double-catch throws. Gives good effort as a blocker, with some aggression when stalking and good extension/form. A very likable prospect who combines prototypical size, a wide catch radius, and excellent body control with impressive explosiveness for his size; could still use some work on the finer points of route running, but looks like a potential second-day pick who could eventually work his way into a starting role at the split end position. Some consider him a candidate to transition to tight end, but while that’s a possibility, it may not be a necessity.

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