FanPost

Numbers Can't Lie: Drafting an elite WR

Back in January, I wrote an article discussing how a wide receiver's height/body mass index (BMI) combination is a critical component to their chances of developing into an elite player.  As it turns out, elite receivers come from four small intersections of height and BMI.

Here is a rough approximation of what those areas look like on a graph:

Wr_height_vs_bmi1_medium

via static.fantasyfootballcalculator.com

The left-hand box is the Slight category (average height, low BMI).  The bottom box is the Short category (short, average BMI).  The right-hand box is the Thick category (average height, high BMI).  And the top box is the Tall category (tall, average BMI).

Now, must of us will agree that WR is one of the Dolphins' most pressing areas of need, perhaps its biggest.  The team seems to have a bunch of No. 2 or No. 3 guys with no elite player among the bunch.  It would be a huge help for this offense to get one of those guys in the system by the time Chad Henne takes over at quarterback.

My goal is to take a look at some of the incoming WR prospects in the Draft this year and to find out which, if any, of them will be entering the league with the body build necessary to become that elite player we need.

I'm going to list the top 15 WR as ranked by Draft Countdown to see if any of them have an elite build.

Here goes:

 


Height
Weight
BMI
Elite?
Category
Michael Crabtree
6-13/8 215
28.1
No

Jeremy Maclin
6-01/8 198
26.8
Yes
Short
Percy Harvin
5-111/8 192
26.7
Yes
Short
Darrius Heyward-Bey
6-15/8 210
27.2
No

Kenny Britt
6-27/8 218
27.3
Yes
Tall
Hakeem Nicks
6-03/4 212
28.2
Yes
Thick
Brian Robiskie
6-27/8 209
26.2
Yes
Slight
Derrick Williams
5-111/2 194
26.7
Yes
Short
Juaquin Iglesias
6-07/8 210
27.8
No

Louis Murphy
6-23/8 203
25.8
Yes
Slight
Ramses Barden
6-6 229
26.5
No

Brandon Tate
5-117/8 183
24.9
No

Brandon Gibson
6-03/8 210
28.2
Yes
Thick
Demetrius Byrd
6-01/4 199
26.8
No

Brooks Foster
6-01/2 211
28.2
Yes
Thick

 

So, what can we gather from this chart?

First off, there are more WRs with elite builds among the top of this year's draft class than I imagined.  Of course, it must be remembered that about half of the WRs with elite builds that are drafted in the first four rounds still don't develop into elite players.  You should also keep in mind that those players who currently have elite builds can subsequently fall out of those categories by gaining or losing weight.  It's also possible for some players to move into an elite category by gaining or losing weight.

To use the line that I continually returned to in the comments of my first column on this subject:  Having one of these four elite builds is necessary but not sufficient to become an elite receiver.

Second, even though Bill Parcells' track record would seem to preclude him from drafting a receiver in the first round, if the potentially-elite Percy Harvin is still sitting there you'd have to consider him.

Of course, with the seeming depth of elite-build WRs, the Dolphins could easily go in a different direction with the first-round pick and still have plenty of options to choose from when they get into rounds 2 and 3.

Brandon Gibson and Brooks Foster will still likely be on the board when the fourth round starts.

Another question the team will have to answer is whether it can be picky about exactly what kind of elite WR it drafts.  One thing Miami's receiving corps lacks is size.  It would be preferable to see them add one of the Tall or Thick guys listed above, but if they have a shot at Robiskie, Williams, or Murphy, they certainly can't overlook them.

Which of those players with an elite build would you like to see Miami draft this year?

(P.S.: On a completely non-football-related note, go buy the new Mastodon album, Crack the Skye, and thank me later.)

 

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of The Phinsider's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of The Phinsider writers or editors.

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