The high-flying Oregon offensive attack is one of the most enjoyable to watch on Saturdays during the NCAA season. However, with the exception of Jonathan Stewart, few skill position players from those groups have made the transition to the NFL and become reliable fantasy assets. Which brings us to the quick, shifty slot receiver Bralon Addison, who hauled in 63 passes for 804 yards and 10 touchdowns in his final season with the Ducks. Could Addison be the next Duck to break the trend and find a home as a dynamic piece of an NFL offense? I went to the tape to find out.
» Agile in the open field; Quickness is greatest asset
» Versatile playmaker, can play WR, RB or return kicks
» Solid body control, especially around the boundary
Addison lined up all over the field for the Ducks, catching passes, throwing passes and even taking handoffs at times. He's a fun athlete to watch in space with the shiftiness of a natural return man. This makes sense, as he scored three punt return touchdowns during his time in Oregon and averaged 12.2 yards per return over his career (Danny Amendola led the NFL in punt return average in 2015 -- min. 20 returns -- with a 12.0 average). Addison also possesses exceptional balance that allows him to bounce off of tackle attempts and keep his feet while racking up yards after the catch. While Addison wins with his quickness, he did show a knack for being able to work his body back to the ball in awkward situations (throws behind him, over the wrong shoulder, etc). He also did fairly well along the boundary in the games I watched, but will need to improve keeping both feet in bounds if he wants to make those same plays on Sundays.
» Disappointing athletic profile
» Suffered torn ACL in 2014, seemed a bit slower in 2015
» Lacks nuance in many facets of WR position
Perhaps it's a result of his torn ACL in 2014, or perhaps Addison just benefited more from the space created by Oregon's offense, but his combine performance was certainly disappointing. His 4.66 40-yard dash, 6.95 three-cone and 116-inch broad jump numbers were all a bit lower than one would have hoped. Addison still has suddenness to get open as a slot wideout, but his athletic profile does give one reason to pause.
Also working against Addison is being a wide receiver in Oregon's offense. Josh Huff is the shining star among Oregon wide receivers to get drafted in recent years, as he was taken 86th overall by the Eagles in 2014. Much of Oregon's offense isn't highly conducive to a quick transition to an NFL skill position, which teams will undoubtedly be thinking about before drating Addison. Many of his routes relied on him simply finding open space, and he rarely showed the level of footwork or nuance in his routes that he'll need to more consistently get open in the NFL.
Ideal NFL fantasy fits
Derek Carr already has two excellent traditional wideouts, so offensive coordinator Bill Musrgave could have fun with a unique player like Addison. The Bengals need some dynamism on the field to complement their big target hogs in A.J. Green and Tyler Eifert, so Addison makes sense in Cincy. Hue Jackson is an innovative offensive mind so I'd be fascinated to see what he could potentially mold Addison into. Addison landing with an experienced quarterback might ultimately be the best, though, and he could learn the game from both Eli Manning and Odell Beckham Jr.
Early fantasy draft projection
Addison is a bit of a wild card in this upcoming draft, or to use another analogy, an incomplete puzzle. The pieces are there and we can see a multi-faceted, dangerous NFL receiver waiting to be finished. But will Addison fall into the right hands to complete his puzzle, or will he simply be another athlete who never turns into a finished product? In leagues where bonus points are offered for return yards, Addison could be a poor man's Tyler Lockett this year, and a decent stash candidate. However, in most leagues he'll be better suited as waiver wire fodder until we see him actually start to come together on the football field.