DK Metcalf: Should We Believe the Hype?

A few weeks back at the National Football League Scouting Combine, we were reminded just how physically gifted one must be to even sniff an NFL opportunity. With standout performances such as 300-pound defensive tackle Quinnen Williams running a 4.83 40 yard dash and Montez Sweats “top performance” label from NFL.com in every major category tested, NFL fans were treated with one hell of a combine. However, when it comes to the Washington Redskins there is one name to keep in mind: DK Metcalf.

The 6 foot 5 inch, 237 pound beast of an athlete has been making headlines since a photo emerged a few weeks before the combine that was eerily similar to the Shawn Oakman picture that greatly boosted his hype. The memes have been non-stop and I have enjoyed every second of them. With his Herculean physique, it’s safe to say that he passes the eye test.

If you look at about half of his combine stats you would think he’d be a lock for a top-ten pick. He ran a blazing 4.39 40 yard dash and powered through 27 reps of 225 on the bench press- it’s not every day you see a receiver who possesses that kind of speed and strength.

He honestly reminds me of Vernon Davis, even though they play different positions, because of their large muscular frame but lightning quick speed. Unfortunately for Metcalf, raw strength and straight-line speed are not the only things they test for at the combine. He recorded times of 7.38 in the 3-cone drill and 4.5 seconds in the shuttle drill. Tom Brady recorded better times than that.

What is so concerning about those times is that these are drills that focus on agility and cutting ability which are absolutely crucial skills for a receiver. It doesn’t matter how big and fast you are if all you’re good for is running fade routes downfield (I’m looking at you, Josh Doctson). A receiver needs an arsenal of routes and Metcalf hasn’t proved a dynamic enough skill set to prove that he’s ready for NFL action.

If you watch his college highlights, they are impressive, but almost every play is the same. He runs straight down the field and either outruns or out jumps his defender. That might work in college, but not in the NFL. DB’s are simply too fast for DK to continue getting away with a basic arsenal of routes.

Despite his flaws, this is a player the Redskins should take a hard look at. I think it is pretty safe to say the Skins biggest weakness last year was their receiving corps. No players on the team last year had more than two receiving touchdowns. That is straight up pathetic and Metcalf offers a potentially good solution. You can’t knock the man’s athletic gifts and this is a pick that can generate a lot of excitement. I don’t hate the Case Keenum trade but I think it is a slight downgrade at the position and an athletic young receiver could be huge for his success.

There is a lot of hype surrounding Metcalf right now. It looks like he has gotten himself into tip top shape and is ready to make moves in the NFL. There are obvious flaws in his game, but his physical gifts still make him a must grab player if he is still available for the Redskins at 15. There is no doubt that receiver is one of the team’s biggest needs and Metcalf can potentially fill the hole that Josh Doctson was supposed to plug. This is an important draft for the Skins and this is a big time pick that can do wonders for the team.

-Jake Hornyak

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