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NFL Draft

2024 NFL Draft Positional Spotlight: Wide Receiver

Here’s a look at some of the wide receivers in this year’s draft class

The 2024 NFL Draft is less than one month away, and with the marquee weekend of the offseason nearly here, the hype and excitement surrounding this year's event is already heating up.

Over the next several weeks, we're going to take a look at some position groups in this year's class while examining a handful of names to know. Let's start with the wide receivers.

Chiefs Receivers Under Contract for the 2024 Season: Marquise "Hollywood" Brown, Kadarius Toney, Justin Watson, Skyy Moore, Rashee Rice, Shi Smith, Anthony Miller, Montrell Washington, Justyn Ross, Nikko Remigio, Jacob Copeland and Cornell Powell.

Five Names to Know

Depending on where you look, the various experts from around the web have identified a handful of receivers who could potentially go in the first round. Three of those players – Ohio State's Marvin Harrison Jr., LSU's Malik Nabers and Washington's Rome Odunze – will likely be selected within the first 10 picks, but fortunately for Kansas City, this is one of the deepest wide receiver classes in recent memory.

Here's a look at five players to know who could potentially be available to the Chiefs in the first round, including where they currently rank among their peers according to the pundits.

Additionally, some players feature analysis from the folks at Pro Football Focus and

Brian Thomas Jr. – LSU

Measurables: 6-foot-3, 209 pounds

Snapshot: Thomas put together a truly breakout campaign in 2023, catching 68 passes for 1,177 yards and an FBS-leading 17 touchdowns while averaging 17.3 yards-per-catch. His 15 "deep catches" – or receptions that took place at least 20 yards downfield – ranked third in the nation, and his 670 "deep yards" ranked second.

Big Board Rankings:

Pro Football Focus (Post-Combine): No. 27 overall (No. 4 WR)

Expert Analysis:

Pro Football Focus: "Thomas offers a good combination of size and speed to push the ball vertically down the sideline, demanding safeties stay rotated to his side. To truly unlock that kind of threat, he will need to show he can consistently beat press coverage. Offenses that like to push the ball will prioritize what he brings to the table in the top 50." "Thomas is a big-play machine and has the upside to develop into a No. 1 receiver for his drafting team."

Adonai Mitchell – Texas

Measurables: 6-foot-2, 205 pounds

Snapshot: A back-to-back national champion with the Georgia Bulldogs before transferring to Texas in 2023, Mitchell caught 55 passes for 845 yards and a team-leading 11 touchdowns last season. He dropped just one pass on 86 targets last year, and his athletic profile – as compiled by “Relative Athletic Score” guru Kent Lee Platte – ranks among the best ever recorded at his position.

Big Board Rankings:

Pro Football Focus (Post-Combine): No. 30 overall (No. 5 WR)

Expert Analysis:

Pro Football Focus: "Mitchell's fluidity at his size makes him a tough matchup, especially in the red zone. The biggest area of concern I have with him is that I wish he attacked the ball more when it was in the air. If he improves in that category, he has fringe WR1/WR2 abilities." "Mitchell is an ideal X receiver. He can make plays when covered, and he's a real weapon in the red zone."

Ladd McConkey – Georgia

Measurables: 6-foot-0, 186 pounds

Snapshot: McConkey hauled in 30 receptions for 483 yards and two scores while averaging 16.1 yards-per-catch in 2023. His best statistical season was the year prior, as he caught 58 passes for 762 yards and seven touchdowns in 2022.

Big Board Rankings:

Pro Football Focus (Post-Combine): No. 32 overall (No. 6 WR)

Expert Analysis:

Pro Football Focus: "Don't expect McConkey to be an "X," jump ball receiver but outside of that, it's hard to imagine him not succeeding in the NFL. His game is reminiscent of Eddie Royal. Maybe not as fast with long speed, but he has devastating quickness, is good in the return game, and is a strong blocker for his size." "Overall, McConkey isn't quite as physical as former Seahawks receiver Doug Baldwin, but I see a lot of similarities in their route running and instincts. I could see McConkey having a similar career."

Troy Franklin – Oregon

Measurables: 6-foot-2, 176 pounds

Snapshot: Franklin broke out in a big way last season with 81 receptions for 1,383 yards and 14 touchdowns while averaging 17.1 yards-per-catch. His 14 catches that took place 20+ yards downfield ranked eighth in the FBS, and his 558 yards on those receptions ranked 11th.

Big Board Rankings:

Pro Football Focus (Post-Combine): No. 40 overall (No. 7 WR)

Expert Analysis:

Pro Football Focus: "Franklin might get lost in the shuffle of a loaded wide receiver class, but he shouldn't. His smoothness comes from his athletic profile and his confidence in knowing how to win at the position. He needs to continue to get stronger but, overall, is a competitive player who can be a good WR2 for a vertical NFL offense." "Franklin piles up yards after the catch because of his pure speed. Overall, he needs to be more consistent with his hands, but he's shown the ability to provide plenty of explosive plays for his offense."

Oregon wide receiver Troy Franklin (11) carries the ball during the first half of an NCAA college football game against Utah Saturday, Oct. 28, 2023, in Salt Lake City. (AP Photo/Rick Bowmer)

Xavier Worthy – Texas

Measurables: 5-foot-11, 165 pounds

Snapshot: An electric playmaker in Texas' offense last season, Worthy tallied 75 catches for 1,014 yards and five scores in 2023. His 4.21-second 40-yard dash at the NFL Scouting Combine was the fastest in the event's history.

Big Board Rankings:

Pro Football Focus (Post-Combine): No. 68 overall (No. 15 WR)

Expert Analysis:

Pro Football Focus: "Worthy must be identified pre-snap in all situations due to how easily he can take a pass to the house if not accounted for. If he can get stronger and learn to be a better hand fighter with defenders, he can be an impact pass catcher as a WR2/3." "After the catch, he has a jet pack on his back. He explodes away from defenders and racks up big plays. Overall, Worthy seems like a taller version of Hollywood Brown -- you can feel his speed in every game."

Two Names to Know Beyond Round 1

Those players are each expected to hear their name called during Round 1, but as previously stated, this year's class is historically deep at wide receiver. In fact, it's quite possible that some of the receivers who will be available on Day 2 would have been first-round selections in previous years.

With that in mind, here are a few names to know beyond Round 1.

Roman Wilson – Michigan

Measurables: 5-foot-11, 185 pounds

Snapshot: Wilson hauled in 48 catches for 789 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2023 while averaging 16.4 yards-per-reception. He dropped just one pass on 67 targets last season.

Big Board Rankings:

Pro Football Focus (Post-Combine): No. 47 overall (No. 8 WR)

Daniel Jeremiah ( Top 50 (March 7): No. 49 overall (No. 12 WR)

Expert Analysis:

Pro Football Focus: "In a different receiver class, Wilson would be much higher on these rankings. He not only brings NFL-level speed but also NFL-level determination at the catch point and when blocking. His tape shows a player coaches would love to have." "Overall, Wilson lacks ideal size, but he has rare speed and quickness. He reminds me of Packers WR Jayden Reed, and I expect Wilson to make a similar impact at the next level."

Keon Coleman – Florida State

Measurables: 6-foot-3, 213 pounds

Snapshot: Coleman recorded 50 catches for 658 yards and 11 touchdowns last season at Florida State. He made numerous acrobatic, contested grabs and established himself as one of the top "jump ball" receivers in this year's class. Coleman has been a polarizing player during the evaluation process. Some outlets see him as a first-round selection, while others do not.

Big Board Rankings:

Pro Football Focus (Post-Combine): No. 55 overall (No. 11 WR)

Daniel Jeremiah ( Top 50 (March 7): No. 45 overall (No. 10 WR)

Expert Analysis:

Pro Football Focus: "Coleman is a top-tier athlete for the position from an explosiveness standpoint. His burst, top speed and leaping ability are All-Pro caliber. However, the lack of agility in his game limits his route tree and ability to separate from defensive backs. Those who love above-the-rim (full pun intended), alpha-type receivers will be big fans, but his inability to consistently separate means he won't be for everyone." "Coleman lacks ideal speed to separate, but he makes a lot of big plays in crowded environments and should be a red-zone menace at the next level."

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