WR Elijah Moore, Mississippi* (5’9”, 185)
Has been a significant part of the offense since his freshman season, in which he went 36-398-2 (11.1). Followed that up with a 67-850-6 (12.7) sophomore campaign, then put together an incredible junior line of 86-1,193-8 (13.9) in Lane Kiffin’s offense.
Productive three-year contributor with a very attractive trajectory. Took snaps on both sides of the field, both on and off the line and both inside and out. Overall athleticism is very good. Shows some quick, nifty footwork at the line to release against press-coverage, something very important given his frame. Looks smooth going through his breaks, albeit from a limited route tree. Has the speed to earn the respect of opposing defenses, which creates opportunities for him underneath as well. Sells double moves well to create separation downfield. Not the biggest receiver but shows a willingness to go up and attack the ball at the high point when working downfield. Able to pluck the ball away from his body. Elusive player with the ball in his hands, being able to make defenders miss in one-on-one situations; even has some ability to escape from an opponent’s grasp. Able to weave through traffic for additional yardage, and to slip through small spaces to finish screens. Some of his routes took him over the middle of the field; not purely or perhaps even primarily a boundary guy. Does a good job of protecting his body.
Lacks the size teams look for in an outside receiver, so he might be viewed as a slot-only candidate by most organizations. Came from a very simplified offense built around package plays and half-field reads. Some of his production was schemed open; would frequently come in motion pre-snap and be available for swing passes, bubble screens, and jet sweeps (listed as completed passes). Most of his big plays also came against zone. Not physical as a blocker and lacks the size to be a major contributor in that regard.
A very quick, explosive receiver who can threaten downfield and do damage on screens, sweeps, and other underneath throws, giving defenders a hard time when he’s able to work with the ball in space. However, his lack of size, the simplified scheme he comes from, and the fact that most of his production came against zone are factors which seem like they might keep him out of the first round, especially given the overall talent and depth at the receiver position in this year’s class. Looks like he’ll probably be more of a second-day pick.