Dallas Cowboys: Will Andre Holmes Be the Next UDFA Star?
Andre Holmes is one of the many wide receivers currently on the roster for the Dallas Cowboys who will be fighting for a roster spot this summer.
He was originally signed as an UDFA in 2011 to the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikings waived him and Dallas signed him to their practice squad.
Prior to playing the Lions, Dallas used Holmes on their scout team to imitate Calvin Johnson.
Johnson is 6'5", 232 lbs and runs a 4.32
Holmes is 6'5", 210 lbs and runs a 4.45
Holmes did a nice job of adjusting his body along the sideline to keep his feet in bounds and catch the ball. He played with technique to free himself in routes, using an arm-over move to buy himself some space. He was a willing blocker, not a killer, but more of a get-in-the-way type. His team brought him in motion to crack on the edge.
Holmes did play some on the slot. He used his hands to snatch the ball, and did a good job of getting up field once he had the ball in his hands. He has outstanding timed speed and you see it when he ran crossing routes. He can really cover some ground when on the move and will get vertical.
This by itself, is encouraging. The fact that he has good hands to go along with a great combination of size and speed, the fact that he has good technique and the fact that he looks good in crossing routes, are all positives.
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He will catch the ball with men on his back in traffic, and was willing to take his route inside, catch the ball and take a hit from the defender. He will lay out for the ball down the field. He knows how to push off to buy himself some separation, and showed the ability to adjust to the low ball.
He was a raw route-runner in college—there was not much smoothness or purpose in this area. But he was clearly better than anyone who tried to cover him, so he wasn't taxed like he would be in the NFL...
Now, Holmes is over a year removed from the games that I was able to study, so you have to feel like there would be improvements in many of the critical areas that I pointed out. His measurables are quite impressive along with his ability to catch the ball, so he has that going for him.
Much will depend upon his ability to learn the offense, run better routes, block correctly in the run game and above all else, contribute on special teams.
But you have to love that the guy catches well in traffic, can take a hit, lays out for the ball and is scrappy enough to battle with corner backs to get separation.
Holmes has the things you can't teach: size, speed and hands. And Miles Austin can certainly advise him cracking the lineup as an UDFA. If he is quick to pick up the rest, he will not only make the team, but also see some playing time this year.
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