By: Ryan Cearfoss
- Receiving ability
- Route Running
Versatility- With this Jaylen Samuels, the most prominent question that arises is what position does he play in the NFL? At the senior bowl, Samuels worked out with running backs, and at the combine, he was paired with the tight ends. His senior year at college he had 76 receptions and 77 carries. He did everything his team asked him to do lining up at running back, tight end, wide receiver, kick returner and h-back. With the right coach, Samuels could have an impact on multiple facets of the game.
Receiving ability- At NC State Samuels was the team’s leading receiver with 77 receptions and 597 yards. He was lined up everywhere and made plays all over the field. Samuels was able to find holes in zones across the middle of the field, run a fairly complete route tree beating corners, linebackers, and safeties. With his unique skill set and great hands, he’s a matchup nightmare in the passing game.
Blocking- Samuels logging snaps at tight end and h-back helped him hone his blocking as both a lead back and in pass protector. The ability to protect the passer along with his receiving ability will keep him on the field in third-down situations.
- No true position
- Jack of all trades
- Breakaway speed
- Not a lot of power for his size
- Needs a creative coach
No true position- While versatility is a fantastic asset for a prospect when a player lacks defined position, it can be a hindrance as well. Where will teams line him up? Will the offensive coordinator be creative enough to use him effectively? There’s not a lot of offensive players that succeed in the NFL without a defined role.
No real trump card- Jaylen Samuels is good at a lot of things but doesn’t have one trait that separates him from the competition. He’s average to good at just about everything for any individual position he lines up in. At the NFL level, where every player is immensely talented, for players to separate from the pack there must be something exceptional.
Lacks breakaway speed- Samuels lacks breakaway speed or burst that will help him break big plays as a runner or receiver in the NFL.
Jack of all trades master of none is the best way to describe what Jaylen Samuels is as a prospect. His ability to catch the ball and run good routes will get him on the field and allow him to have a role in an offense. The question is how coaches will use him and if they will be able to do it efficiently enough where he can make a real impact on the game.
As a fantasy player Jaylen Samuels is incredibly hard to project, we don’t even know what position he’ll be listed as on team pages yet. His landing spot could be as crucial as any rookie in this year’s draft for fantasy purposes. While he is worth a late round flyer pick in rookie drafts, I’d view his ceiling as a flex type play in fantasy down the line.