Rookie Rundown #3 Miles Boykin The poor draft record at the wide receiver position has not scared Eric DeCosta. I personally believe that our scared mentality has cost us more than poor evaluation. Sure, Breshad Perriman left a bad taste in everyone’s mouth but I would like to attribute his lack of production more to the coaching staff. He did have solid production in Cleveland with an offensive coordinator who knew how to use him. The point is, the less risks we take, the less home runs we hit. If we continually ignore the wide receiver position, Lamar Jackson will never be given a chance to grow. Sure, Hayden Hurst and Mark Andrews would be good help, especially with how Lamar Jackson likes to enjoy to throw to the middle. I’m not here to grade the pick, because I hate the trade up for him. I sincerely believe we could have gotten him had we stayed put. I grilled on the pick at the time simply because I thought there was a better WR on the board, Riley Ridley. I did not want Hakeem Butler, and I always Kelvin Harmon was an overrated commodity on this forum. What I am here to do is evaluate the player. Boykin shot up draft boards after having a dominant combine performance. There are questions whether he plays that at the speeds he tested at. Running a 4.4 40 yard dash and testing well with quickness. So is Miles Boykin another Stephen Hill or Darren Waller? Let’s find out. Player Profile Miles Boykin is a big boy. 6’4 220, and he clearly looks the part on the field. What no one criticizes Boykin for is the fact that he knows how to use his size. But not in the way most people are going to perceive him. People will look at Boykin’s body type and assume that he’s going to turn into Brandon Marshall, or Vincent Jackson, or Michael Thomas. Big wide receivers who wear down opposing corners and body defenders to pull of spectacular catches. Boykin pulls off spectacular catches, but not in tight man to man coverage. He can, and sometimes does, but that’s not really his game. Boykin wins more-so off of superior body positioning and his larger than life catch radius. https://media.giphy.com/media/IeXh1PZ8BiQl6tn7IA/giphy.gif This is his game. That’s a terrible throw, even Lamar Jackson with all of his inaccuracies is a better QB than the Notre Dame one, and Boykin makes it work because of positioning and size. Something he does quite frequently. https://media.giphy.com/media/fUw3Rjn5wyus2RerSN/giphy.gif This is what happens when you get a good ball thrown to Boykin. This is a lob telling Boykin to go get the ball. Boykin is a good route runner, further along than most of the prospects that we have drafted. The most devastating route in his tree is the back-shoulder fade. He’s near unrecoverable on that route due to his catch radius. https://media.giphy.com/media/dAtiCJGzWaeN6f0mOk/giphy.gif In the hands of a competent coordinator with an NFL caliber QB, this play is called two or three times a game, and probably in critical conversion situations. A corner, no matter how good they are, cannot defend this route unless they can match his size. It’s unlikely that the NFL has enough corners who can. Boykin has soft hands, seldom drops passes, acrobatic ability, and where he will earn his stripes is as a blocker. He’s very good and can take a corner out of a running play entirely. This alone will likely earn him a starting spot and make him a worthwhile pick. Boykin is far from perfect though. While he is a good route runner, there are certain things he could do to improve his abilities before breaking into his route. He needs to get better at hand fighting before the play. While he doesn’t play at 4.4 speed like the combine indicates, he’s a long-striding 4.5. A guy who can go deep. He’s not Mike Evans who has good acceleration, but as a possession WR, he can get you a 40 yard gain on a single catch. He has straight line speed, but what he lacks to me is quickness against the outside corners. He’s got enough to get by, but to me he’s going to win more off of technique. Watching Boykin’s tape has led me to a conclusion about him. He’s a slot WR full time at the next level. He can play the outside, and won’t suck doing that, but on the inside against slot corners he’s considerably bigger than, or against a linebacker he’s going to eat those guys alive if he can improve on his route running at the next level. I’m not a fan of player comparisons, but this is easily the closest thing to one of my favorite players of all time, and one of the most underrated players in NFL history in Marques Colston. Very big WR, plays at 4.5 speed straight line, good route runner, especially in the short area, not particularly quick, though quick enough, and he catches damn near everything. He’s not a true fit on the outside, but he can go there. Boykin at the next level isn’t going to be a game changer, but he’s could be very useful if used correctly.. As a run blocker on the inside he will effectively take out all the slot corners you could throw his way. He’s really good in the red zone, uses his catch radius and positioning to win rather than bodying his competition, though he can do that. Boykin needs a good OC to get the best out of him, but one of his best uses is likely as a guy who can keep the offense on schedule. He’s going to make spectacular catches, but he’s not going to make a lot of big plays downfield. He’s a chain mover and a touchdown machine, and as a rookie he can bail Lamar out of some of his bad throws. But ultimately, this is probably my least favorite pick. He's not a bad player, but we could've filled a bigger need here. Yes, WR is a bigger need. We could have used the draft picks we traded to bolster depth. One can only hope that he’s slotted correctly.