Chris Harper   WR   Kansas St      

TALENT BOARD ROUND  1

 

STRENGTHS

Chris is a powerful wide receiver.  He has a running back's body and runs after the catch like his crotch is on fire.  He has excellent speed and quickness and the strength not to get moved off his routes.  Chris does a nice job running routes and shows on film to have strong hands and the ability to adjust to the ball in the air, go up and make the tough catch.  He is an excellent blocker and when I see a wide receiver who blocks as well as Chris does, I know right away that what follows in evaluating that player will be really good.  Chris is excellent on crossing routes -- after he catches the ball, he takes the play to his defender and tries to punish him for trying to tackle him.  He uses a stiff arm on most crossing routes to keep players away from his legs, which is the key to less leg injuries in the open field for running backs and receivers.  Chris is smart and will be able to play more than one position for you on offense because of his size, speed and overall athletic abilities. 

 

CONCERNS

Chris has to prove that he can catch the deep ball in a game or he will just be an impact slot receiver/specialty player.  I think he can, but his college team doesn't pass deep enough for me to see it on any film (that I have) and workouts just don't do it for me.  Proof will be when he does it consistently in the NFL.  Still, he can and will impact as a specialty player if he doesn't show consistency catching the deep ball.  Also, Chris might struggle at first to catch the ball at the pro level because the ball will be out quicker in his routes which may create a few timing and confidence issues until he gets adjusted to the speed of the game in the NFL.

 

BOTTOM LINE

Chris reminds me a lot of a faster Cris Carter.  He has strong hands as well as upper and lower body strength.  When the ball is in the air, he has that aggressive attitude that says to those around him, "It's all mine."  My gut tells me he can catch the deep ball in stride, but I just haven't seen it on film.  Start him out in the slot and you will see an impact player who has the potential to be a #1 wide receiver for the team that drafts him.  He has a stout body that will impact on punt returns and, because of his body type and the style of his play, he should keep himself relatively injury free to stay on the field and be impactful. This kid could be something special.  However, as I said before, he might start out dropping some balls until he gets accustomed to a QB that throws more quickly than his QB in college.  Just give him some time and he will adjust.  Seriously, how can you not draft a player who catches the ball on crossing routes and then runs like his crotch is on fire?

 

 

Drew "The B.S. Detector" Boylhart

Jan/2013