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Jared Abbrederis having big week he needed at Senior Bowl

  • By Andy Fenelon NFL.com
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MOBILE, Ala. -- Jared Abbrederis has heard them all. Wes Welker. Eric Decker. Brian Hartline. Danny Amendola. Jordy Nelson.

The comparisons are natural, if not lazy. Welker's the one you hear the most, and might be the worst. There's a four-inch difference in height and Welker is decidedly slower than the Wisconsin wide receiver who is participating this week in the Reese's Senior Bowl.

But, hey, they're both white receivers. So there's that.

"There are a whole bunch of different comparisons out there, but I've got other comparisons as well," Abbrederis said after Wednesday's North team practice. "I feel I'm a mix of a couple of different guys, but I'm not going to compare myself to someone at the next level because I'm not there right now. I'm not going to compare myself to someone in the NFL who's been ballin'."

That people are talking about Abbrederis is a good thing, and there's plenty to talk about this week at Senior Bowl practices where the 6-foot-1 receiver has stood out among his peers, catching nearly every pass thrown his way and running precise routes.

"He's consistently been the best receiver on the field this week," an AFC scout said. "You know when they say the best player always jumps off the film when you pop in a game tape? Jared has been one of those guys for me this week."

Scouts would do themselves a service by putting on another tape. In September, Abbrederis faced Ohio State CB Bradley Roby, a first-round pick in three of four analyst mock drafts that appeared on this site last week. Abbrederis torched Roby for 10 catches, 207 yards and a touchdown in a performance that NFL Media analyst Bucky Brooks believes said more about the Wisconsin receiver than Roby.

One scout with an NFC team that has a need at wide receiver said Abbrederis' biggest problem is the year he's entering the draft. He's right. More than 20 percent of the 98 underclassmen who declared early for the draft are wide receivers. Add that to a list of quality seniors such as Texas' Mike Davis, Vanderbilt's Jordan Matthews, Wyoming's Robert Herron and Oregon's Josh Huff, and Abbrederis might be no better than a mid-to-late-round pick.

As for the comparisons, NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah threw out one recently that not only makes a lot of sense, but also would make Abbrederis a draft steal if indeed he doesn't go until Day 3.

NFL Media analyst Gil Brandt says Abbrederis reminds him of Hartline, the Miami Dolphins wide receiver. That one makes sense, too, and not just for the obvious reasons.

Data collected from the NFL Scouting Combine since 2003 lists Hartline as one of 10 receivers that most closely resembles Abbrederis, when comparing height, weight and 40 time; Abbrederis, who measured 6-0 7/8 and 189 pounds at Monday's Senior Bowl weigh-in, says he expects to run in the 4.4-seconds range in the 40-yard dash at next month's combine. Hartline, who measured 6-1 5/8 and 195 pounds and ran a 4.58 40 at the 2009 combine, was picked in the fourth round by the Dolphins.

Follow Andy Fenelon on Twitter @Andy_Fenelon.

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