NFL Draft Analysis: Darrius Heyward-Bey, WR, Maryland Terrapins

by Zach Sanders on February 9, 2009 @ 00:00:00 PDT

 


University of Maryland wide receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey will forgo his senior season and enter the 2009 NFL Draft. In 2008, he caught 42 passes for 609 yards and five touchdowns for a 14.5 yards-per-catch average. He was also a threat in the running game, rushing for 202 yards and one touchdown on 15 carries. He was a very consistent performer at Maryland, posting at least 40 catches and 600 yards in each season and finishing his career with 13 receiving touchdowns and two rushing touchdowns.

Strengths

  • Speed, having ran the 40-yard dash in an unofficial 4.23 seconds in 2006
  • Strong hands
  • Good at fighting for jump balls; 6-foot-2 1/8, 206 pounds
  • Home run threat at any time and good breakaway speed
  • Willing to go over the middle

Weaknesses

  • Focus is inconsistent, which leads to dropping "catchable" passes
  • Will not make many defenders miss
  • Tends to round off routes on occasion
  • Not a good blocker at this point

Expected draft placement

Teams in the late first round likely will have their eye on Heyward-Bey in the draft. The earliest he would be selected is probably by the Chicago Bears at No. 18. He could team up with wide receiver Devin Hester to form one of the fastest receiver duos in the NFL. He could also pique the interest of either the Miami Dolphins at No. 25 or, perhaps, the Baltimore Ravens at No. 26, both of which are looking for a receiver who can be a deep threat in their passing game. The only other team in the first round who may be interested in him would be the Tennessee Titans at No. 30. The Titans always seem to be looking for receiver help and Hewyard-Bey would help with his speed. There is a small possibility the slip in the second round, but he probably would be snatched up early if that were to happen.

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About Zach Sanders

Sanders has been a KFFL contributor since 2008.

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