Since 2000 there have been just 2 NFL drafts that we have seen 5 wide receivers selected within the first 25 selections. This year may be the third draft since 2000 with 5 wide receivers picked within the top 25 picks.
One play that has become a “red hot” commodity has been LSU wide receiver Odell Beckham.
Clemson’s Sammy Watkins and Texas A&M end Mike Evans look to have secured spots in the top 10 selections for 2014 and Beckham has steadily moved up the draft boards throughout his junior campaign.
While I have never scouted a Tiger wide receiver who could run better routes and has better hands than Tiger teammate Jarvis Landry, Beckham has emerged as the clear-cut third best receiver in the Class of 2014 and there are a few teams that have a major interest in acquiring the speedy wide receiver/return specialist.
There is a lot of speculation that the San Francisco 49ers with 6 selections in the top-100 have a keen interest in moving up to add Texas A&M king-size wide receiver Mike Evans to the lineup, but they would have to move to a top 10 spot to select him and many teams in that spot don’t want to trade down that far, despite getting extra picks.
Speculation is that the 49ers have a great deal of interest in moving to a teens pick in Round One to select the former Tiger star end and he would be the 49ers version of what the Seattle Seahawks have in Percy Harvin at wide receiver.
Right now the 49ers are trying to match the NFL version of the “Jones” in the Seattle Seahawks.
If that occurs that could well affect what the New Orleans Saints may do also in Round One.
Two weeks ago in this spot I wrote that the Saints would have to move up in Round One to select either Beckham-really move up for that choice or make a short run up the draft board to select either Oregon State wide receiver Brandin Cooks or USC end Marquise Lee.
Two general managers who have teams that pick before the Saints do at #27 told me this week they believe the Saints will try and move up in Round One to get either Cooks or Lee.
“There is still some draft board shuffling to happen between now and May 8th, but as a team we speculate that those 5 receivers will be gone before the Saints pick at 27,” the NFC general manager said. “The Saints are looking for that deep threat. It would add so much to what Sean Payton already has and he is really one of the few brilliant offensive minds in the game. There will be a good linebacker or cornerback there for them to pick if they stay put, but either Cooks or Lee could add that “over the top” speed guy that could make that offense special. Marques Colston healthy is still a very effective player due to his great size and his ability to work the inside routes. Kenny Stills was a steal for the Saints. He is going to be a very good player, especially in the slot position. That “speed” element teamed up with Jimmy Graham could be lethal for opposing teams to match up against and to be honest late in the draft I really think they will pick a speed/all-purpose halfback to take Darren Sproles’ spot. Payton works the backs just so well as receivers and it’s tough to match up against those type guys. The New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles and Kansas City Chiefs all need wide receivers. I really think Mickey ( Loomis), with some encouragement I should say from Sean, will try to trade up to get one of those two big-play elements. If not, I could see them trading back and I agree with you 100% that one player as a second round pick that would be great for them would be Mississippi’s Donte Moncrief, but he may not be there late in Round 2 either. I could see 15 wide receivers selected within the first 65 picks. To be honest I see as many as 15 wide receivers picks in the top 65 and probably 12 cornerbacks too. It’s just a great class of wide outs and cornerbacks.”