Editor’s Note: As we get ready for the 2012 NFL Draft, we’ll be “meeting” some players who just might find their way to Buffalo come April. In this series we’ll take a look at possible Bills draft picks and break down their abilities and potential.
Overview: This two-time Biletnikoff Award winner put up absolutely monster numbers in college. Can he make a similar impact in the NFL?
Strengths: Incredibly productive in college (111 receptions for 1,782 yards and 20 touchdowns in 2010/113 catches for 1,337 yards and 15 touchdowns in 2011) Not huge, but plenty of size for an NFL wideout at 6’1, 215. Has very long arms and the frame to add some muscle. Very strong already though, and has more than enough strength to fight off press coverage.Not fast by NFL WR standards, but quick. Really good route runner – he’s super physical in his route running, using his strength and size to get position on defenders to make up for his lack of high end speed. Fights for the ball in the air very well, adjusting to the ball in flight exceedingly well and using his long arms to his advantage. Works back to the football to help his QB. Capable of making jaw-dropping catches. Wasn’t asked to run block much in Oklahoma State’s pass-happy offense, but strong enough and willing enough to be effective in that capacity.
Weaknesses: The lack of high-end speed is a big concern. Can he run past NFL corners? Drops the ball way too often and at terrible times. Character concerns are there – he had a DUI arrest in 2010 and at times was clearly upset with not getting the ball more. It’ll be important for him to ace his pre-draft interviews.
How He’d Fit in Buffalo: The Bills desperately need another starting-quality receiver, and if Stevie Johnson isn’t re-resigned…I don’t want to think about that. If Blackmon’s there at #10, it’d be hard for the Bills to turn him down. A Johnson/Blackmon combo would be a very potent one.
The Bottom Line: Blackmon’s a bit controversial. Scouts either love him or don’t get the hype. I love him. He reminds me a lot of Anquan Boldin or Terrell Owens – guys who overcome a lack of elite speed with strength and good positioning. He’d be a great weapon for Ryan Fitzpatrick and this Bills offense.