This is the ninth in an ongoing series on 2019 NFL Draft prospects by Chris Reed. He will analyze possible 2019 NFL Draft picks and their fit for the Raiders. Today, we look at Ole Miss wideout DK Metcalf.
Name: DK Metcalf
Position: Wide Receiver
School: Ole Miss
DK Metcalf has a fluid release, keeps DB’s hands out of his chest when being pressed, stacks well after release, exceptional size and speed prospect, wide catch radius, natural hands catcher, aggressive run blocker, quality run after the catch ability.
Neck injury ended his season, occasional false step in his release, limited route tree, could be more consistent winning 50/50 balls, could clean up his route running as he would round off at times.
Why He Would Fit the Raiders
DK Metcalf is every bit of his 6-foot-4 and 225-pound frame. What makes him special is the athleticism he has at his size. He is far from a prodding, big body target as his seven 50+ yard receptions over his last two seasons can attest. The Raiders offense desperately needs a big play receiver that can thrive outside of the numbers and Metcalf fits that mold perfectly.
Metcalf has exceptional hand fighting skills and lateral quickness to beat press coverages which have frustrated previous Raiders receivers. He also has a second gear to win vertically. Opposing defenses have not had to respect the deep pass when facing the Raiders for a long time. Teams like Kansas City have utilized game plans of essentially squatting on quick routes understanding they will not get beat deep and trusting their pass rush to get home. Metcalf would change that dynamic.
His size, strong hands, and catch radius also make him the perfect prototype for Jon Gruden’s offense. He would give quarterback Derek Carr a bigger margin for error in quick pass situations. He also has the lateral quickness and acceleration to pick up yards after the catch. There is nothing a passer loves more than delivering a quick strike and letting the receiver do the rest.
Why He Would Not fit the Raiders
Metcalf will most likely be the only receiver that could be in consideration for a top-10 pick but even he would be considered a reach at the Raiders current #4 overall selection. His combine testing could push him up the board earlier than their later selections. Outside of that “draft value” there is nothing about Metcalf’s game that would not both fit the Raiders system as well as fill one of their biggest offensive needs.