DeAndre Hopkins   WR   Clemson

TALENT BOARD ROUND  4

 

STRENGTHS

DeAndre has excellent receiving skills to be an impact player for the team that drafts him. He is very quick in and out of his breaks and shows the speed needed and the receiver savvy to get deep.  He has strong hands and is fearless going over the middle to catch balls.  He shows the ability to adjust to the ball and go up and catch the ball with someone on him.  He has a good understanding and feel for the quarterback position and seems to see the field from that perspective.  This makes it easy for him to be on the same page as his quarterback, read the defense and adjust his routes (when needed) on the fly. What I liked the most about his route running is, when he looks for the ball on the deep routes, he stays on his line and doesn't drift.  He is impossible to cover on double moves because of his quickness.  He is very easy to throw to and you can trust him to go get the ball when you throw to him anytime during a game.  His effort as a blocker is outstanding overall.  

 

CONCERNS

The thing holding DeAndre back from being considered by most (except me) as a possible #1 WR is his size and strength.  They list him at 200 lbs, but he is the skinniest 200 lbs on film that I have ever seen.  He looks to be between 180 and 190 and not the body type that will be able to gain more pounds. But I could be wrong. That being said, he is very easy to move off his routes and push out of bounds when he is playing on the sidelines and although he gives excellent effort blocking, he is not strong enough to hold the blocks long enough as needed in some cases.  His blocking is decent at the college level because of his effort, but for the next level, this lack of strength will be magnified and taken advantage of.  The big question for most teams will be, can DeAndre improve his strength? 

 

BOTTOM LINE

Right now he reminds me a lot of Brandon Lloyd and, like Brandon, the ability to build up his strength will be the key to DeAndre reaching the potential his athletic talents suggest that he can become. If he struggles to get stronger and run powerful routes to deal with the bump techniques at the line of scrimmage, then worse-case scenario, you have yourself an excellent #2 receiver and a very dangerous slot receiver.  Either way, he is going to make an impact and that's value.  There is no doubt Deandre will become a quarterback's favorite receiver, a core player for your receiving game and a fan favorite.  I haven't even talked about his ability to return punts, but with his quickness, he should impact on special teams as well. 

 

Drew "The B.S. Detector" Boylhart

Feb/2013