Scouting Report: In a draft with a lot of really talented wide outs, the Alabama Crimson Tide's Julio Jones is sort of an enigma. Some games I watch, he looks polished and poised and makes every catch. Other games he's slow out of breaks, rolling off routes and dropping easy catches. On his best day he's easily the peer of Georgia's A.J. Green. But when he's off, he's way off. The best part of Jones game, and a part that's so underrated is his run blocking. He's an exceptional run blocker and NFL teams positively glow at the idea their wide outs can run block and see the play action fake. I think if I am looking for one part of Jones game, where he falls where behind green it's in his consistency. He shows lapses of concentration in his hands, doesn't always press his routes hard enough, and doesn't do everything to go get the football. This can be attributed to a lot of things, but no matter what, you see enough of him to know he has that elite talent, so it's going to come down to putting in the work to get more consistent. Physically he's very similar to Green and he's an ideal size for me in terms of NFL wide out. He does lack elite top end speed, so he's going to have to either beat the press and fight for the ball, or run precise routes that get him open, because with those long legs, he's not going to run away from anyone purely with speed.
Draft Status: Easily the 2nd best WR in the draft, and in this class that should almost assure him a mid first round selection.
Final Analysis: If there's something to point to with Jones is he's a hard worker, and fearless. He'll run across the middle, take the hits and come back for more. I mentioned his speed and while he's not as quick as smaller players, if he clears the chuck at the line, his long strides will allow him to get behind secondary players and he just has to make those deep catches when he's open. Tons of potential and a work ethic that leads me to believe he can play up to his potential on a week in and week out basis eventually. The team that drafts Jones is going to get a solid young man, a hard worker, and a kid with every physical tool you could ask for, other than elite speed and quickness.
Reminds me of: Dwayne Bowe WR Kansas City Chiefs - Bowe has a little more beef, and a little less height but both guys coming out of college carried a similar scouting report. Bowe is still showing he can't be counted on play after play. When he's on, he's impossible to stop, but when he's off, you just let him go.
Scouting Report written by Curt Popejoy