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Sep. 24, 2020 - Michael Stewart

NFL Draft: Top 3 offensive skilled players at each position

Introduction: The 2020-21 College Football season is finally upon us and with that in mind I wanted to review my top 3 prospects at each position. This list should change as the season progresses and prospects could over perform and also under perform throughout the course of the season. This will be a series of 4 with the Offense and Defense having two featured articles displaying the best of the best. So let’s get right at it and start off with the offense featuring Quarterbacks, Running Backs, Wide Receivers and Tight Ends.

Quarterbacks:

  • Trevor Lawrence (Clemson)-6’6/220: Lawrence has been the consensus 1st overall pick from the start. Lawrence is lethal with his arm and also with his legs. The only possible way he isn’t the 1st overall pick is if he has an injury plague year in 2020.
  • Justin Fields (Ohio State)-6’3/228: Fields could go 2nd overall if an NFL picking second desperately needs a franchise quarterback. If not, then Fields should crack the top 5; especially if he repeats his 2019 performance in 2020 as he earned a 91.5 overall grade.
  • Trey Lance (North Dakota State)-6’3/221: Lance has all the tools to be a successful NFL quarterback (arm strength, size and running ability). Lance has excellent presence in the pocket and is a good decision maker committing only four interceptions in 2019.

Running Backs:

  • Travis Etienne (Clemson)-5’10/210: Etienne would have been the 1st running back off the board in the 2020 NFL draft if he decided to enter the draft. Instead he stayed to help Clemson win another National Champion. Etienne is equally effective on the ground and in the passing game.
  • Trey Sermon (Ohio State)-6’0/221: Sermon transferred from Oklahoma and will give the Buckeyes a duel threat out of the backfield. Sermon has good size (6’0/221) to be an every down back in the NFL and it’s unclear if he joins Etienne as a 1st round selection in the upcoming draft.
  • Chuba Hubbard (Oklahoma State)-6’0/201: Hubbard plays bigger than the listed size suggests (6’0/201) and is equally effective running between the tackles as he is running off the edge. Hubbard was a work horse for Oklahoma State with 328 carries in 2019.

Wide Receivers:

  • Ja’Marr Chase (LSU)-6’0/208: Chase’s 2019 season was over shadowed by fellow wide-out John Jefferson’s season, but make no mistake the high skill set Chase possesses. Chase had the most deep catches than any other wide receiver in 2019 with 24 and is expected to be more lethal in 2020.
  • Rashod Bateman (Minnesota)-6’2/210: Bateman could finish the season as the top wide receiver in the 2021 draft and hear his name called before Ja’Marr Chase. Bateman’s size and speed combination makes him a threat anywhere on the field as he averaged 20.3 yards per reception.
  •  Rondale Moore (Purdue)-5’9/180: Moore plays extremely big for size with the ball in his hands. Moore is arguably the best slot receiver entering the NFL draft this year if he can stay healthy; which wasn’t the case in 2019 as he was injured in week 4.

Tight Ends:

  • Pat Freiermuth (Penn State)-6’5/260: Freiermuth is molded as your old fashion tight end with his combination of solid blocker and reliable receiver packaged into one. When you watch Freiermuth on the field, it’s hard not to compare him to Rob Gronkowski with his overall play and also his demeanor. In my book, he is the best tight end coming out of college by a wide margin.
  • Kyle Pitts (Florida)-6’5/240: Pitts led the Gators in receiving in 2019 and that’s impressive when you take into account that three receivers were drafted in last year’s draft. Pitts is one-dimensional at this stage of his career as he needs to get bigger and stronger to handle blocking responsibilities in the NFL. Make no mistake of his offensive prowess as he overmatched any cornerback or linebacker trying to defend him.
  • Brevin Jordan (Miami)-6’3/245: Jordan is extremely athlete, but needs to improve on his blocking skills; which could push him down in the upcoming draft. However; if he is drafted into the right system, he could blossom into a offensive weapon. 2020 will be a very important year for Jordan to enhance his value and draft position.

Final Thoughts: As I mentioned earlier, this list could and should change during the course of the season and if so, I will revise it and give an updated assessment on all the prospects. Many football analyst project the 2021 draft to be as deep as the 2020 draft and that should make the NFL draft even more exciting to view. As a football fan, I’m looking forward to watching these prospects and many others during the season and believe this season will be full of highlighted moments. Next article: The Offensive line top 3 at each position.