Photo of Kelvin Benjamin
Drafted By: Panthers
  • Round 1
  • Pick 28
  • Overall 28

Combine Results

Grade
6.13 ?
  • 4.61 SEC
    Top Performer
  • 13 REPS
    Top Performer
  • 32.5 INCH
    Top Performer
  • 119.0 INCH
    Top Performer
  • 7.33 SEC
    Top Performer
  • 4.39 SEC
    Top Performer
  • 12.08 SEC
    Top Performer

Draft Analysis:

"He's 6-foot-5, 240 pounds with 35-inch arms, and you're talking about a catching radius. However, there's one thing about wide receivers with only one year of college production (like Benjamin at FSU) and it's a little sobering when you look at the names on that list: Stephen Hill, Greg Little, Devin Thomas, Anthony Gonzalez." -- Mike Mayock

  • 6'5" Height
  • 34 7/8" Arm Length
  • 240LBS. Weight
  • 10 1/4" Hands

Overview

Highly recruited out of Florida prep power Glades Central, where he also played basketball. Played through a partially torn right knee ligament as a junior in 2009. Redshirted in '11. Played all 14 games in '12 and had 30 catches for 495 yards (16.5-yard average) and four touchdowns. Started all 14 games for the national champions in '13 when he led the ACC in touchdown receptions (including the game winner in the BCS Championship Game) by hauling in 54-1,011-15 (18.7).

Analysis

Strengths

Possesses rare size with an 83-inch wingspan. Is a physical mismatch vs. defensive backs and linebackers. Eats cushion and separates with long strides. Strong approach to the ball -- is not easily knocked off course and will enter the middle on crossers. Outstanding jumpball catcher -- climbs the ladder, plucks the ball at its highest point and regularly snatches it out of the air with superb body control and the grace of a ballerina. Creates separation with his body. Adjusts surprisingly well for the low ball and tracks it well over his shoulder. Energetic football demeanor. Confident and competitive. Strong-handed. Uses his body well to shield the defender from the ball and can beat double coverage. Good run strength after the catch (see three tackles broken on TD run vs. Florida) and does not go down easy. Strong enough to handle defensive ends when motioned inside to chip and delivered some head-snapping, crackback blocks (see N.C. State). Emerged as a clutch, go-to, big-play receiver -- caught the game-winning TD in the national championship game vs. Auburn and consistently was targeted in critical situations and in the red zone. Scorched Florida CB Loucheiz Purifoy and created mismatch problems from the slot.

Weaknesses

Lacks elite, top-end speed and many catches are contested. Hand use could improve releasing vs. tight, press coverage. Overly grabby. Is not yet a nuanced route runner and does not sink his hips and pop in and out of his breaks. Does not shake many defenders after the catch. Will make the easy concentration drop and focus could stand to improve at the break point (three drops vs. Florida). Seeks to run before securing the ball and double-catches more than he should. Blocking effort/sustainability has room to improve on the move. Has a 32 1/2-inch vertical jump and recorded the slowest 60-yard shuttle time (12.10 seconds) of any receiver at the combine.

Draft Projection

Round 1

Bottom Line

A tight end-sized, intimidating, big-play receiver with a rare wingspan, Benjamin has the overall strength, length and wide catching radius that will demand extra coverage be rolled his way. Showed continual improvement, is still growing into the position, and possesses the traits to become a legitimate No. 1 receiver. A very intriguing mismatch weapon with ascending talent.
-Nolan Nawrocki
C
Grade Title
9.00-10 Once-in-lifetime player
8.00-8.99 Perennial All-Pro
7.50-7.99 Future All-Pro
7.00-7.49 Pro Bowl-caliber player
6.50-6.99 Chance to become Pro Bowl-caliber player
6.00-6.49 Should become instant starter
5.50-5.99 Chance to become NFL starter
5.20-5.49 NFL backup or special teams potential
5.01-5.19 Better-than-average chance to make NFL roster
5.00 50-50 Chance to make NFL roster
4.75-4.99 Should be in an NFL training camp
4.50-4.74 Chance to be in an NFL training camp
No Grade Likely needs time in developmental league.

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