NFL Draft Analysis: Louis Murphy, WR, Florida Gators

by James Li on April 14, 2009 @ 00:00:00 PDT

 


University of Florida wide receiver Louis Murphy has entered the 2009 NFL Draft, adding yet another freakishly athletic player to this year's mix. Although the senior has been one of the most exciting players on the Gators' roster recently, he has not had much collegiate experience as one would like - he received close to no playing time as a freshman and sophomore.

Murphy totaled 37 receptions for 548 yards and five touchdowns in 2007; he added 38 catches for 655 yards and seven touchdowns in 2008. One of his most impressive statistics, however, is his career 16.2 yards-per-catch average.

Strengths

  • Fantastic athlete with impressive combo of leaping ability, explosiveness, and speed: 4.32-4.43 seconds in the 40-yard dash at the 2009 NFL Scouting Combine
  • Valuable, proven downfield threat
  • Tough, durable and creates separation well
  • Good height at 6-foot-2 3/8.
  • Elusive and gains quality yardage after the catch

Weaknesses

  • Skills of route-running and blocking still need major improvement
  • Has not had much experience in the limelight; only two years of production
  • Maturity
  • Thin frame (203 pounds); not physical or able to beat press coverage
  • Ball security and hands - allows too many passes to hit his body

Expected draft placement

We've seen players like this before: an incredible athlete with question marks about his actual football ability. With his immense vertical ability, possible return game ability and undeniable upside, Murphy seems like a pretty popular bet in this draft.

Don't expect him to fall past the middle of the third round, where teams like Indianapolis Colts, Kansas City Chiefs and Oakland Raiders will be eager to snatch midround talent. Any number of teams could select him at this stage of the draft, of course. While his limited playing time in college will hurt his draft status, these teams will see him as a first-day steal they can slowly hone and mentor.

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About James Li

James Li has been a KFFL contributor since 2006.

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