NFL Draft 2012: Late-Round Receivers That Will Make Big Impact

Michael DixonAnalyst IIIFebruary 2, 2012

LITTLE ROCK, AR - NOVEMBER 19:   Joe Adams #3 of the Arkansas Razorbacks catches a touchdown pass against the Mississippi State Bulldogs at War Memorial Stadium on November 19, 2011 in Little Rock, Arkansas. The Razorbacks defeated the Bulldogs 44-17.  (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
Wesley Hitt/Getty Images

With the NFL Draft right around the corner, we're also about to see NFL coaches and scouts look ridiculous in waiting to get certain people. At the receiver position, we can see examples of that playing in the Super Bowl this Sunday. 

Victor Cruz and Wes Welker were both undrafted and they seem to be doing OK. This group of receivers are in great shape to be this year's Cruz or Welker. They will be drafted, just far too late.  


Joe Adams, Arkansas.

NFL Draft Scout Projection: 3rd-4th round

Here is a player that can absolutely fly. Adams runs a sub-4.4 40, which instantly makes him a big play threat whenever he gets his hands on the ball.

In addition to what he can do as a receiver, Welker is also a strong punt returner. In 2011, he had four punt returns for a score. 

With that kind of dazzling athleticism, Adams is going to be a playmaker in the NFL and will do so early.


Jeff Fuller, Texas A&M.

NFL Draft Scout Projection: 4th-5th round

In Fuller, you have a receiver who's had his 40 time clocked at 4.42, yet you also have a guy who is 6-foot-4.

That combination is lethal.

As we have also seen, in open space, Fuller is exceptionally hard to bring down. That is something that is going to play very well at the next level.

Fuller's senior season in College Station was something of a letdown, but he still had 828 yards and six touchdowns. If that's a bad year in college, he will be an effective NFL receiver. 

Something else that stands out is what Fuller did in some of his team's biggest games. 

  Receptions  Yards  Touchdowns
Oklahoma State  6 55 2
Texas 7 107 1
Northwestern (Meineke Car Care Bowl)   7 119 1

That demonstrates a clutch factor that doesn't always show up in stats.

Gerell Robinson, Arizona State. 

NFL Draft Scout Projection: 5th-6th round

Robinson is an athletic marvel.

At 6-foot-3, 223 pounds, the size is obviously there, but Robinson also runs a sub-4.6 40, which is incredibly strong for a man of that size. 

As we saw in the Senior Bowl in Robinson's 41-yard catch and run for a touchdown, he is capable of taking a short pass and making a big play. With his height, you know that he can catch the deep ball as well.  

Robinson showed the overall big-play ability all year with 77 receptions and 1,397 yards. That works out to an average of better than 18 yards a catch, an impressive stat with that many receptions.

NFL defensive backs will have a difficult time lining up against the Arizona State star. He won't catch as many passes, but Robinson will be a nice red zone option.

Don't be surprised to see another short catch followed by a long run at the next level.