2017 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Corey Davis
By Charlie Campbell
Summary: The most prolific wide receiver in the history of the FBS is Corey Davis. Let that sink in. He produced at a level that no player ever has before. During his senior campaign, Davis sent the FBS record for career yardage after passing Nevada's Trevor Insley. Insley had 5,005 yards before Davis ended up totaling 5,285 yards over his college career. While Davis played at a smaller level of competition, he has skill set to be a good NFL wide receiver.
Davis started out his career with quality freshman-year production (67-941-6) before breaking out as a sophomore with 78 catches for 1,408 yards and 15 touchdowns. Davis was banged up with injuries in his junior season, but played through them while totaling 90 receptions for 1,436 yards with 12 touchdowns. That season the attention he commanded also opened up teammate Daniel Braverman to have a big year. As a senior, Davis saw lots of bracket coverage yet he still amassed 97 receptions for 1,500 yards and 19 touchdowns.
Sources said they graded Davis after his junior season thinking he might come out early and he was receiving second-round grades. Davis decided to return to school though, and now sources say that he could end up going in Round 1. Davis has the potential for some teams to view him as a future No. 1 receiver.
For the NFL, Davis is a well-rounded and polished receiver. His head coach, P.J. Fleck, was the wide receivers coach with the Buccaneers before leaving for Western Michigan, and Fleck developed Davis well for the next level. Davis has impressed evaluators with good route-running, reliable hands, and deceptive speed. They like his run-after-the-catch skills and size. Davis uses his stealthy speed and route-running to consistently get separation for his quarterback. He has excellent hands and after the catch, he is dynamic. Davis is faster than one would expect, and there are plenty of plays where he pulls away from defenders in the open field. He improved his ability to win 50-50 passes as a senior and got better about using his size to his advantage.
Sources from multiple teams said they view Davis more as a late first-round or early second-round talent. He has the potential to end up being a No. 1 receiver or a really good No. 2 receiver at the pro level.
Player Comparison: Demaryius Thomas. Sources have compared Davis to Thomas but a less-thick version of Thomas. That makes sense as both are bigger receivers with deceptive speed and excellent run-after-the catch skills. In the NFL, I could see Davis being a receiver who is similar to Thomas but maybe not quite as dynamic.
NFL Matches: Buffalo, Philadelphia, Tennessee, Tampa Bay, Kansas City, Baltimore, Dallas, New Orleans, San Francisco, Chicago and Los Angeles Rams
There could be a lot of teams in the market for an upgrade at wide receiver, so Davis could a Thursday night selection after his tremendous collegiate career.
Buffalo needs a wide receiver to pair with Sammy Watkins. The Bills badly need a play-maker to help their passing offense when Watkins is out of the lineup and exploit teams sending double coverage his direction. A reliable receiver like Davis could be a good complement, but he probably won't go that high in the first round.
The Eagles have to get more weapons for Carson Wentz. They need a true No. 1 receiver for Wentz as they don't have Alshon Jeffery on a long-term deal, and the Eagles could view Davis as their future No. 1. The Ravens could consider Davis as their long-term replacement for Steve Smith. Going in the middle of Round 1 seems probably too high for Davis, but it is possible.
Tennessee needs to find more receiving weapons for Marcus Mariota. Davis could be in play for the Titans' second first-round pick.
The Buccaneers need a third receiver to go with Mike Evans and DeSean Jackson. Getting a receiver like Davis could be a tough challenge for opposing defenses.
Kansas City supposedly wanted Laquon Treadwell last year, so adding more receiving talent to go with Jeremy Maclin could be a possibility for the Chiefs. Dallas re-signed Terrance Williams, but considering the durability issues of Dez Bryant, the team could use another play-maker at receiver for Dak Prescott. Davis could be phenomenal for the Cowboys.
The Saints traded Brandin Cooks to the Patriots. They will probably go defense at pick No. 32, but if they don't like their options and Davis is the top player available, they might consider getting Drew Brees another weapon.
If Davis slips to the second round, there are a lot of teams that could snatch him up quickly. The 49ers badly need more wide receiver talent. The Bears have to replace Alshon Jeffery, and Davis has shown an ability to thrive in a cold climate. The Rams badly need a No. 1 receiver for the disappointing Jared Goff, and Davis could be a real asset to helping Goff improve in his second season. Davis would be a steal for the Rams.
2017 NFL Mock Draft: Charlie's | Walt's
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2017 NFL Draft Scouting Reports
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