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Tajae Sharpe NFL Draft 2016: Scouting Report, Grade for Titans Rookie

B/R Video@@bleacherreportB/R VideoApril 30, 2016

Michael Conroy/Associated Press

POSITIVES

A talented receiver at all three levels of the field, Tajae Sharpe put up numbers at UMass that speak for themselves. He caught 85 passes for over 1,200 yards and seven touchdowns as a junior before adding 111 catches, 1,319 yards and five more touchdowns as a senior.

Sharpe is comfortable running every route from a go to a quick slant or bubble screen. He has ideal quickness to get in and out of breaks without slowing down and will accelerate into space to track the ball. Excellent footwork is the foundation for Sharpe's success. He's able to chop up on cuts and break to either side with balance and precision.

With the ball in the air, Sharpe is a natural, dropping just three passes on 177 targets all season long. He locates the ball early and will outposition defenders with his quickness to make a clean catch. When Sharpe has the football, he's slippery enough to pick up yards after the catch.

NEGATIVES

Small hands immediately show up when looking at Sharpe's stat sheet. On a 6'2" frame, his 8 ⅜-inch hands stand out as below the line for NFL standards. On a lean frame, Sharpe may need to add weight. He doesn't play to his listed size and can be bumped around by physical cornerbacks.

Sharpe's struggles against press coverage will be a headache for NFL scouts. At UMass, he was often facing off coverage and a big cushion, which allowed him a free release on the many underneath routes he ran. With a lanky frame, he'll get jammed up immediately by NFL cornerbacks and safeties.

Sharpe is quicker than fast, and teams looking at him as more than a slot receiver will find that he doesn't possess the straight-line speed to pull away from in-phase coverage.

COMBINE RESULTS

Height: 6'2"

Weight: 194 lbs.

40 Time: 4.55s

3-Cone: N/A

Short Shuttle: N/A

PRO COMPARISON: Allen Hurns, Jacksonville Jaguars
FINAL GRADE: 5.90/9.00 (Round 4—Backup Caliber)

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