The most thrilling college football regular season with so much uncertainty has finally come to a close and there are with out a doubt a few players that have increased their draft stock throughout the season. Some of the players probably wasn’t considered to be on anybodies radar before the year began.
Here’s a list of who made our top-7 draft eligible receivers for the 2022 NFL Draft:
1. Jameson Williams, Alabama/Ohio State
It might be hard to believe that Ohio State had the top-3 wide receivers of the upcoming NFL Draft on the roster at 1 time, but it is actually true. Jameson Williams started his career with the Buckeyes but left to Alabama for more playing time and opportunities to get the ball. Alabama had lost a lot of wide receiver talent over the last 2 NFL Draft classes and had openings for a few veteran receivers to make an impact.
Jameson came right in to the Bama locker room and immediately became a force in the already explosive offense. Before coming to Alabama, Jameson had not caught more than 9 catches in a season; Jameson had two games this year where he had 10 catches. Jameson going into the college football playoffs has 68 receptions for 1,445 yards and 15 touchdowns. His speed and route running ability has made him a sure fire 1st round pick in the upcoming 2022 NFL Draft.
His former team mates at Ohio State are right behind him, but it makes you wonder if other players in the country are just as good as Jameson but because of the system their programs run they are not able to utilize their full potential. I would say it was a great move by Jameson to bet on himself and make the move to the most dominating college football program in the history of the game.
2. Chris Olave, Ohio State
When you think about Chris Olave you think consistency, reliable, and big time when the game is on the line. Olave has the key element that all receivers need to have going into the NFL which is reliable hands. Chis has been Ohio State’s top receiving option for the past 3 years. He continues the pipeline of elite players in the wide receiver room to the NFL for Ohio State. Olave numbers are right on target with 65 receptions, 936 yards receiving, and 13 touchdowns. He had close to the same numbers in 2019 before the COVID hit and he had a crazy numbers for just 7 games in 2020.
Olave may not be considered the most dynamic receiver in this draft or on his own team, but he has been as consistent and reliable as they come. He came back this year to help boost his numbers and draft stock to get him into the first round of the 2022 NFL Draft. Olave is a guy that probably won’t be chosen in the top 10 of the draft but he will be a solid addition to a team like the New Orlean Saints who need a solid receiver to replace the Saints #1 receiver Michael Thomas who will be on the move in the off-season for certain.
Olave to is the best value at the position in this draft. If he goes early in the first round he will be asked to be a solid number 1 which I believe he could be, but if he goes later in the first, Olave will be a key piece to a team trying to make a run at the Super Bowl.
3. Garrett Wilson, Ohio State
Some might say how could this be, but it is very possible. Garrett Wilson has been money for Ohio State since he stepped on campus. Big catch after big catch is what we have come to know of Wilson. He is a match-up nightmare for most corners who get the unfortunate task of stopping him. He is as consistent and reliable as his teammate Chris Olave and ever bit as explosive. Most NFL teams would not mind having either or on their team next season. Everything said about Olave can and will be said about Wilson.
Wilson has excellent route running ability the complements well with his ability to create separation off the line and in mid route. What most NFL teams covet in receivers are these two invaluable traits that separate great receivers from good ones. One trait I think most would take any day of the week is a receiver who is willing to go up and win the 50/50 ball.
4. John Metchie, Alabama
The Crimson Tide have truly become a factory for wide receivers for the NFL and John Metchie is no different. Metchie has the ideal size NFL teams are looking for in a wide receiver and he comes with reliable pass catching hands. He is built and runs like a tall running back that was put out wide.
Metchie was QB Bryce Young favorite target in 2021. Metchie had 96 receptions for 1,142 yards and 8 touchdowns. In the SEC Championship game Metchie suffer a significant knee injury that sidelined him for the rest of the game. If this was 15 years ago there would be some room for concern, but with modern medicine and new techniques for these types of injuries a lot of players are returning to the field in less than a year. I expect Metchie to go in the late 1st or early 2nd round in the upcoming draft to a team that may not need him to touch the field immediately.
5. Drake London, USC
There are a lot of good receivers in this draft class that are just above the 5’11 mark, but there’s not a lot of guys on the radar that are hitting 6’3 and above, but this guy Drake London is one of the few that stands out. Drake is 6’5 210 lbs and uses every bit of his size to his advantage. The guy doesn’t play small at all and if he has to he will muscle you out the way for the catch if you try to bully him.
On numerous occasions this season, Drake has out made highlight play after highlight play just by going up for the 50/50 ball. Corners in the NFL are now hitting the 6 foot mark regularly so a guy that can go even higher with a massive wingspan makes him quarterback favorite target. Drake has exceptional hands to go along with his ability to track the ball in the air on the jump ball or during contested throws. His route running ability will be something he will have to improve on if he wants to be seen as someone who can play all over the field and create space.
USC has been known to put receivers in the league that are reliable, and Drake will do just the same. I can expect drake to fall to go in the mid-1st round because it looks to be a drought at the wide receiver position in the NFL or at least quality talent. Teams like the Seahawks, Jaguars, Eagles, Jets, Texans, Bears, and Green Bay could use a receiver like Drake. If Drake can stay healthy he can be any of these teams with a young QB number 1 option or runner up.
6. Jordan Addison, Pittsburgh
The second year true-sophomore out of Maryland became a force for the Pittsburgh Panthers during their ACC Championship run. 93 receptions for 1,479 and 17 touchdowns. Addison plays much bigger than his 6’0 175 lbs frame would lead us to believe. This style of play helped him get separation from the DB and create opportunities for his quarterback to exploit. He became a matchup nightmare every week in the ACC which lead to Addison achieving the 2021 Fred Biletnikoff Award.
7. Dontario Drummond, Ole Miss
This selection at No. 7 might throw a few readers off guard but finding a diamonds in the rough gives an organization a better feeling than some of the sure fire picks. Drummond comes from Ole Miss and played in the Lane Kiffin offense that has produce a few studs for the NFL. Drummond is a thicker 6’1 220 lbs receiver who I would say compares to the retired Anquan Boldin. Drummond is a solid route runner and catches the ball with his hands more so than letting the ball hit his chest. Another great aspect to the Drummonds game that screams Anquan Boldin is Drummonds sneaky speed after the catch.
Drummond is too big to bully at the line of scrimmage or take the ball from once he has it in his hands. Drummond can be a very reliable receiver for the young talented QBs that are taking over the NFL. A few teams could benefit from a receiver with his skill set.