Top 10 WRs In 2018 NFL Draft

1. Alabama WR Calvin Ridley – Junior – 6-0, 190 – 4.43
The claim as the top wide receiver in this draft class has been a long time coming for Ridley. He’s been a key part of the Tide’s passing attack since his true freshman season in 2015, and for the last three years has been one of the better receivers in the SEC. Ridley only eclipsed the 1,000-yard receiving mark once – his freshman year – but that can be credited to the lack of quarterback talent on Alabama rather than a decline in Ridley’s ability. He’s not the fastest, but he’s plenty fast, he’s not the most athletic, but he’s plenty athletic. He’s a savvy route runner who can beat defenders with athletics and with technique. All around, he’s the top man this year – even at an older age of 23.

2. Maryland WR D.J. Moore – Junior – 6-0, 210 – 4.42
Moore has been a late riser throughout the 2018 NFL Draft process, but he capped off a great year with an even better Combine, and because of that, many draft experts are putting him in the first round of their mock drafts. Moore certainly saved his best season for last (his junior year) as he recorded 1,033 yards on 80 catches with eight touchdowns. That was good for more than his previous two years combined. Moore’s 4.42 40-yard dash, 39.5-inch vertical jump and 11-foot broad jump proved he’s a top athlete in this class. He’s a master of yards after the catch and easily creates space with his feet. He can play any of the three wide receiver spots, but would be best used as a flanker or a slot.

3. Oklahoma State WR James Washington – Senior – 5-11, 213 – 4.54
If you want production, Washington sure has plenty of it. As quarterback Mason Rudolph main target over the last two seasons, Washington collected more than 1,9000 yards and 23 touchdowns. His small frame and slower top speed bring his potential dow form that of someone with his stats with better measureables, but he still knows how to run an assortment of route well, can win at the catch point, is very natural as a deep threat and knows how to score.

SMU WR Courtland Sutton - Photo by: Getty Images

SMU WR Courtland Sutton – Photo by: Getty Images

4. SMU WR Courtland Sutton – Senior – 6-3, 218 – 4.54
After a 2016 campaign which recorded 1,246 yards on 76 catches with 10 touchdowns, many thought Sutton was going to declare for the NFL draft last year following his junior year. However, he opted to return and had a pretty good 2017 to follow it up. Sutton recorded less yards but still broke the wide receiver milestone with 1,085 yards. He also had less catches catches (60), but he did have more touchdowns (12). Sutton is a true “X” receiver who can deal with press and be a red zone target. He was looked over a bit this year just because people like new things, but Sutton is still a talented big body – though he does need to diversify his route tree.

5. Texas A&M WR Christian Kirk – Junior – 5-10, 201 – 4.47
Kirk, like Ridley, has been what many would call a household name for years now. After a true freshman season where he put up over 1,000 yard on 80 catches with nine all-purpose touchdowns, people have just been waiting to get their hands on Kirk’s NFL Draft profile. He wasn’t able to get over the 1,000-yard mark in either of his other two seasons, but he brings elite athleticism to the receiving game and the return game. He’s an ideal slot receiver who plays the position with good strength as well.

6. Notre Dame WR Equanimeous St. Brown – Junior – 6-5, 215 – 4.48
St. Brown (nicknamed “EQ”) is a player whose hype comes more from potential than production over the last few years. With the quarterback situation shaky for all three of his seasons, St. Brown never recorded more than 1,000 yards receiving, though he did get close in 2016. Though he doesn’t have a 1k season, what he does have is rare athleticism and speed for a player who is 6-foot-5. St. Brown is still raw as a player with that kind of frame, but the NFL likes that. He’ll come off the board in the first two rounds.

7. LSU WR D.J. Chark – Senior – 6-3, 200 – 4.34
As is the case every year with certain wide receiver prospects, Chark is a player whose talent outweighs his low production of the last few years due to either an inept offense or just bad quarterback play. Chark, like St. Brown, is a speedy receiver for his size. He was the deep threat player on an offense that didn’t throw it deep very much. Chark had the most catches (40) and yards (874) of his career in 2017, but did average more than 21 yards per catch. NFL Network’s Daniel Jeremiah had Chark in his Top 5 for receivers and he caught everyone’s eye with a fantastic Senior Bowl week in Mobile, Ala.

8. Penn State WR DaeSean Hamilton – Senior – 6-1, 205 – 4.55
Bucs fans know well the affect one Penn State wide receiver can have on a team from their experiences with Chris Godwin in 2017. Hamilton could be next in line to have that kind of impact. Hamilton took over as the top target for the Nittany Lions after Godwin’s departure. In his final year, his senior season, he recorded 857 yards with nine touchdowns. Hamilton, who became Penn State’s all-time leading receiver last year, went on to participate at the East West Shrine event and the Senior Bowl where he showed off some very polished route running. He seems like a perfect pick up as a slot receiver at his size with his quick feet.

Washington WR Dante Pettis - Photo by: Getty Images

Washington WR Dante Pettis – Photo by: Getty Images

9. Washington WR Dante Pettis – Senior – 6-1, 192 – 4.48
The West Coast guys sometimes have a habit of getting overlooked in this process, and maybe that’s the case with Pettis, as he was an impressive wide out for each of the last two years. In 2016, Pettis hauled in 15 touchdowns on 822 yards. He’s a unique fit, but a true all-around wide receiver who can win at the catch point, beat people with route running, and not to mention his skills as a return man. Pettis has the most punt returns for touchdowns in NCAA history (nine) and could be a hidden gem in this class.

10. Colorado WR Michael Gallup – Senior – 6-1, 205 – 4.51
Gallup is a fan favorite for many draft analysts. At his best, Gallup can hang with any cornerback, or at least he could during his time in the Pac-12. Gallup earned first-team All-Mountain West Conference by catching 76 passes for a conference-high 1,272 yards and 14 touchdowns in 2017. He’s a first-round sleeper for some, but that doesn’t mean the NFL is totally up to that standard for him. He’ll be a Day 2 pick somewhere, but where that is, early or late, is in the eye of the beholder. He needs some technique work but the talent is there.

Best Of The Rest

11. Memphis WR Anthony Miller – Senior – 5-11, 190 – 4.49
Miller could end up being the mismatch nightmare player from this draft class. At his size of 5-foot-11 and under 200 pounds, it’s obvious that his best work is done when he can create space using his feet. Whether that’s as a slot receiver or a flanker receiver on the outside, if Miller is put in space, he can really work his magic with explosive and decisive movements in and out of routes. Miller eclipsed 1,400 receiver yards in each of the last two seasons and had 32 touchdowns total to go along with it. Small in size but big in production, Miller could be the next steal of a slot receiver.

12. Florida WR Antonio Callaway – Junior – 5-11, 197 – 4.41
At the NFL Scouting Combine, NFL analyst Mike Mayock said Callaway has first–round talent with undraftable off-the-field baggage. After being the focal point of Florida’s offense for his true freshman and sophomore seasons, Callaway’s college career was cut short after he was charged with credit card fraud back in August of 2017 – this after he had been caught with marijuana multiple times throughout his time in Gainesville. Callaway was suspended for his entire junior season, and instead of returning to Florida he decided to declare for the draft. By running a 4.41 at the Combine, Callaway reminded everyone that he was one of the best athletes in one of the most athletic conferences. Though still raw due to age and lack of experience, Callaway will be drafted.

13. Iowa State WR Allen Lazard – Senior – 6-5, 227 – 4.55
Lazard was very much the big “what if” wide receiver prospect coming into the 2017 season. After a 2016 campaign that got him notice with 1,018 yards and seven touchdowns, there was talk that Lazard might have declared after his junior year. But, he elected to come back for his senior season in which he recorded 941 yards and 10 touchdowns. Prospect evaluators wanted Lazard to be the next freak of an athlete for a guy with his size, but he just doesn’t play like it. Instead, he’s a good red zone threat, but nothing that will get him picked in the Top 50.

14. Florida State WR Auden Tate – Junior – 6-5, 225 – 4.68
Tate, like Lazard, was a player that many kept close watch over to see if there was a rare athlete in such a large frame. After Tate ran a 4.68 at the Combine, that basically confirmed that that wasn’t the case. However, Tate is still a budding receiver who has a knack for making tough catches at the catch point — which, for him, is really high up in the air. He’ll certainly find a place in the league. He’s of the Devin Funchess mold.

15. UCF WR Tre’Quan Smith – Senior – 6-1, 209 – 4.49
Smith comes from a Scott Frost offense that was very fast paced and resulted in a lot of points, and Smith was the benefactor for many of those points with 1,1171 yards and 13 touchdowns. He’s a deep threat receiver who has a nose for getting behind a defense. He’ll be a deep threat player for a team looking to pick up a wide receiver in the early parts of Day 3.

16. Penn WR Justin Watson – Senior – 6-3, 215 – 4.39
Watson is not a household name by any means, but he’s an all-around receiver prospect who possesses nice strength and speed, and he showed that off at this year’s East-West Shrine event and the Senior Bowl. Watson ended his career at Penn on back-to-back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons receiving. He scored 31 touchdowns over that time and even contributed on specials teams, too. He’s the exact kind of depth player teams look for and covet on Day 3.

Click Page 3 For The TE Rankings

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About the Author: Trevor Sikkema

Trevor Sikkema is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers beat reporter and NFL Draft analyst for PewterReport.com. Sikkema, an alumnus of the University of Florida, has covered both college and professional football for much of his career. As a native of the Sunshine State, when he's not buried in social media, Sikkema can be found out and active, attempting to be the best athlete he never was. Sikkema can be reached at: trevor@pewterreport.com
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Dman
3 years ago

In this draft I think we stand pat at TE and WR, unless we move D Jax…..

Buc 1976
3 years ago

Call Dallas and trade Djax!

Pete Wood
Reply to  Buc 1976
3 years ago

That would be ideal.

Dman
Reply to  Buc 1976
3 years ago

They have the need, just hate sending him to an NFC team. How about San Diego?

Schwifty9
3 years ago

Unless we trade Jackson, we shouldn’t spend a single pick on Receiver, and we have no reason at all to use a pick on a Tight end.

Brooks Dunn-Winston
3 years ago

Why are we talking about TEs and WRs?

Dman
3 years ago

C.J. Anderson released by Denver today. 27. Good back. Would line up well with Payton.

macabee
Reply to  Dman
3 years ago

Had the same idea when the Broncos released RB C.J. Anderson/Cal 5-8 224 . Anderson had 1,007 yards rushing last year with 3 TDs. He is a 6 year veteran at age 27 and will be a free agent. Bucs TEs coach Ben Steele was on Cal coaching staff in 2011-12 when Anderson played there in college. This is Koetter’s opportunity to get his Maurice Jones Drew RB from his Jacksonville days. They are both former Cal RBs with similar running styles. Rumor is they made a run for RB Carlos Hyde in early free agency. Let’s see what the… Read more »

Schwifty9
Reply to  macabee
3 years ago

Picking up CJ Anderson and landing Quenton Nelson in the first would be a blessing, IMO that would free us up to go defense with all of our remaining picks.

But I don’t remember ever seeing a rumor about us pursuing Hyde, the RB I saw us linked with the most during FA frenzy was McKinnon.

macabee
Reply to  Schwifty9
3 years ago

I don’t think Koetter said exactly what RB they were pursuing, but it was rumored to be Hyde, McKinnon, or Dion Lewis. Doesn’t matter who but that the Bucs were in the hunt, just didn’t get one. May be they will try again or take one in the draft or both. Good luck on your choices! Go Bucs!

http://www.joebucsfan.com/2018/03/we-were-in-on-at-least-one/

Buc 1976
3 years ago

IMO C.J fits the bill!

Lucas Rowzee
3 years ago

Hey Trevor how mad would your buddy Jon be if he saw Anthony miller as WR 11?

Freeman Strickland
3 years ago

If Pettis was still on the board and someone would give us the current pick for DeSean Jackson, I would say make the trade and get Pettis. That is not a shot at DeSean Jackson. Jackson is just not a good match with Winston. Jackson will be much better with a quarterback who will laser it in to him in stride as he blows past the last defender. Pettis seems better able to break stride to grab a ball thrown up for grabs. I think that it would be a win-win. I wonder if it is a deal that Dallas… Read more »

Buc 1976
Reply to  Freeman Strickland
3 years ago

I would like to see a trade with Dallas. But I don’t think they would give up a 3rd it would be great if they did. I Would be happy for a 4th or anything just to get Djax out of Tampa.