While I don't believe we will look for a WR early in the draft, I'm usually wrong come draft day, so I'm doing a Draft Profile on University of Florida WR Louis Murphy.
He's not a household name, playing the shadow of Tim Tebow and Percy Harvin, who gobbled up all the media attention surrounding the Gators. But Murphy could end up being the best WR from the past year's squad. He's currently projected for the 3rd round, but I expect that to change once he hits the combine. At 6'3, 205lbs, he's got an NFL ready body, and his low 4.3 speed only adds to the package.
Murphy was never a standout in college, putting up rather pedestrian numbers throughout his career, but it's the potential and the measureables that will have teams drooling. You can't teach size, and you can't teach elite speed, and Murphy has both. He also has terrific hands and natural ball skills, which is highly coveted in a big WR. He's shown the ability to go up and get the ball in college, and make the tough catch in traffic
But, while Murphy is an absolute FREAK of an athlete, he will most likely be a bit of a project at WR. He's not nearly as polished as his teammate, Percy Harvin, and, although he does possess great quickness, he will definitely to improve his route-running before he expects to create any kind of separation, outside of just running by people on deep balls, at the NFL level. But all of these concerns are very easily solved with good coaching.
I believe the biggest factor in where he'll be drafted will be his tremendous potential. His combine numbers won't hurt either. Once the draft is upon us, I would expect him to climb draft boards and end up somewhere in the 2nd round. If we're looking at a WR on Day 1, I'd be perfectly happy with taking Louis Murphy with our 2nd pick in Round 2.
I'll leave with a video clip of Murphy's TD in the National Championship. Nothing special, but he does make a nice catch with a defender closing, then stumbles and reaches into the endzone for the score. Bang It Here to watch.
Thoughts on Murphy?