As a result of teams looking to copy Seattle's "Legion of Boom" blueprint, there's been quite the buzz about some clubs looking for bigger cornerbacks in this draft. That has naturally resulted in other teams looking for bigger receivers who can handle that size in press coverage.
Whether it's Mike Evans going in the top 10 or some under-the-radar options being looked at in later rounds, it seems like coaches are taking size into consideration with receivers more than past drafts. But is there such a thing as too much size? NFL Media analyst Charles Davis thinks that might be the case with Florida State's Kelvin Benjamin.
"Mike Evans and Kelvin Benjamin are, in a lot of ways, the same guy," Davis told 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh on Tuesday. "But, I do know that a number of scouts and personnel people like Evans a lot better really for this reason -- he doesn't weigh over 240 pounds. 240-pound receivers scare the heck out of NFL personnel people because when you do your studies, and you go back and look, name the 240-pound receiver that was -- forget All-Pro -- that was productive over a period of time. They just really haven't. He's not out there."
This wouldn't be the first -- nor last -- time a prospect's weight came up as a red flag for scouts. It's rare for it to be a wide receiver, though, and that's what Davis hints at regarding Benjamin.
Benjamin himself has acknowledged that some teams have told him they would like to see him drop some weight.
"They have what they want receivers to be, about 225," Benjamin said back in March. "It wouldn't hurt if I dropped this weight and got down to 225. I think I would be faster, be more deadly."
The 6-foot-5, 240-pound receiver does carry his weight well, however, and certainly represents a mismatch for most defensive backs and linebackers. He's strong and most teams love what he can do in the red zone after a productive career in Tallahassee. He does lack the top-end speed you look for in a No. 1 receiver, but nevertheless has the tools to be considered analyst Mike Mayock's fifth-best receiver in the draft.
For teams picking in the bottom half of the first round, there's simply no more intriguing option at wideout than Benjamin because of all this. That red flag about his weight no doubt weighs heavily on evaluations, though.
In some ways it could help frame the conversation around Benjamin. Graham is 6-foot-7, 265 pounds and, while faster than the Florida State product, still has that big frame. Maybe a few teams will simply view Benjamin as a smaller tight end that stays flexed out. A few others won't and that's likely what prompted them to say something to Davis.
As Benjamin visits with teams over the coming weeks prior to the draft, we're sure he'll be trying to alleviate any concerns about his weight as teams dig deep into what he can do at the next level.