Even though there are big name WRs leaving college for the upcoming draft, there are still plenty of wide receivers that will ball out this upcoming season, some of them being big names that you’ve heard of, and some that will come out of nowhere and surprise you. Let’s take a look at the players I believe will be the best returning players for this position.
The first player is THE man at this position, who I believe should have won the Biletnikoff award, and had he not gotten injured in the playoffs would have led his team to the national championship game against TCU, that player is Marvin Harrison Jr out of THE Ohio State University. First thing you notice when you look at MHJ is his size, he stands at 6 ‘4 and weighs in at 205. This is surprising considering his dad was a smaller receiver in height and weight. With the injury to Jaxon Smith-Njigba, Harrison Jr. was able to put this receiver corps on his back and lead them to an 11-1 season and a College Playoff berth. He finished the season with 77 receptions for 1,263 yards and 14 touchdowns. What really sets MHJ apart from others is how crisp of a route runner he is. He runs the routes like he is the size of his father and then uses his size to make sure he’s the only one who can catch it. I truly believe that Marvin Harrison Jr. will win the Biletnikoff award this year and will be a top 5 draft pick in 2024.
My next player is the running mate of Marvin Harrison Jr, and that is Emeka Egbuka. Last season Egbuka really started on fire, racking up almost 500 yards receiving and hauling in 5 touchdowns in the Buckeyes first 4 games. Egbuka finished the season with 74 receptions, 1151 yards, and 10 touchdowns. What has him so high on my list though is how he ended the season. Against Michigan and eventual national champion Georgia he hauled in 17 catches and 237 yards with 3 touchdowns. He showed he could be a number one receiver against Georgia when Harrison Jr. went down. I really like how Egbuka can slide into any spot on the field, but especially the slot and use his speed to burn corners and get wide open. I also like how he isn’t afraid to run across the middle. With teams focused more on MHJ, I’m expecting Emeka Egbuka to have his numbers increase from last year and may be the only one that could Challenge Harrison Jr. for postseason awards.
The third receiver on my list is Xavier Worthy out of the University of Texas. While Worthy’s stats aren’t impressive, finishing the season with 60 receptions, 760 yards, and 9 touchdowns, I’m expecting these numbers to improve with the improvement of the quarterback play to go along with a Big-12 schedule. With the addition of Arch Manning, I’m expecting Quinn Ewers to have a heck of a season, which plays in Worthys favor. Moving forward I picture Xavier Worthy being more of a slot receiver due to his small frame. Worthy stands at 6’1”, 163 pounds. His frame reminds me of DeVonta Smith of the Philadelphia Eagles. Bottom line Xavier needs to get better Quarterback play inorder to not only help the team reach their goals but to keep Xavier Worthy in the “Top 5 Wide Receiver” conversation.
This duo is on the list because they both came out of nowhere last year and I couldn’t decide which one I liked more. These players are Washington Huskies Wide outs Rome Odunze and Jalen McMillan. In 2021 these players combined for barely over 800 yards and just a handful of touchdowns, but in 2022, Odune tallied 75 receptions, 1145 yards, and 7 touchdowns. This was partnered by McMillan and his 79 receptions, 1098 yards, and 9 touchdowns. I’m expecting these numbers to take another leap in 2023 with the return of starting Quarterback Michael Penix Jr. This means that the chemistry and understanding of routes will be there already and now it’s just about how to put it all together and take it to the next level. Defenses will really have trouble shutting down both of these wide outs, meaning someone is always bound to make a play. If this is the case I’m expecting Washington to ride these 2 receivers to a potential Pac-12 championship berth and a fighting chance for a playoff spot.
My final selection is another duo, but this one is more for what they could be rather than what they did last year. Both of these players saw action in the SEC last year and showed flashes of what could be. These players are Barion Brown and Dane Key out of the University of Kentucky. Barion Brown really caught my eye last year when the Wildcats played the University of Georgia and their #1 ranked defense. In that game Brown went off; he finished the game with 10 receptions for 145 yards and 1 touchdown. During this game he was covered by potential first round pick in Cornerback Kelee Ringo. When I look at Barion Brown it makes me think of Wan’Dale Robinson or Kentucky great Randall Cobb – shifty and can make people miss with his moves. Brown finished the season with 50 receptions, 628 yards, and 4 touchdowns, which led to him being selected to the Third Team Freshman All-American Team. His running mate is Dane Key, who is the bigger of the two standing at 6’3 and weighing in at 200 pounds. Key wasn’t used much but in the Music City Bowl against Iowa he was the main focal point for that offense and finished the game with 6 receptions and 47 yards. For the season he had 37 receptions, 519 yards and 6 touchdowns. With the return of Liam Coen at offensive coordinator and Devin Leary coming in as QB1, I’m expecting these two to take a big leap in production and help continue the rise of Kentucky football.
Some other Wide Receivers to keep an eye on: Troy Franklin (Oregon), Dorian Singer (USC), Mario Williams (USC), Roman Wilson (Michigan)
Videos/ 2 days ago
Dallas Cowboys Free Agency Moves, Possible Trade Targets and The 2023 NFL Draft!
Now Bout Them Cowboys, Ep 2 – Free Agency Moves, Possible Trade Targets and...
Videos/ 3 days ago
NFL FREE AGENCY UPDATE – Friday, March 17, 2023
Join us at T2T as we recap the NFL free agency moves that took...
Articles/ 1 week ago
T2T, Dynasty Rookie Superflex Mock Draft
3 Rounds – Superflex, PPR If you’re interested in some analysis on these players...
Articles/ 1 week ago
DNow’s Top 2023 CFB Safeties
The 2023 NFL draft is dominated by top tier talent at the Cornerback position....
Videos/ 1 week ago
Dallas Cowboys Salary Cap, Free Agents and Trade Targets
Now Bout Them Cowboys, Ep 1 – Dallas Cowboys Salary Cap, Free Agents and...