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Ja'Marr Chase Is 'Better Than Amari Cooper,' Will Be No. 1 WR, Per Scout

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistMarch 10, 2021

FILE - In this Dec. 7, 2019, file photo, LSU wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase (1) celebrates his touchdown against Georgia during the first half of the Southeastern Conference championship NCAA college football game, in Atlanta. Ja'Marr Chase  was one of three players from LSU’s high-powered offense to earn unanimous first-team all-SEC honors when The Associated Press All-Southeastern Conference football team was announced Monday, Dec. 9, 2019. (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
John Bazemore/Associated Press

The expectations for Ja'Marr Chase heading into the NFL are already high, but the former LSU star might be even better than his college reputation suggests after he drew comparisons to a four-time Pro Bowl wide receiver. 

Per Bob McGinn of The Athletic, one NFL scout has no doubt Chase will be a No. 1 receiver "right away" and called him "better than Amari Cooper."

"He'll need to tighten up his routes a little bit," the scout said. "Unbelievably competitive, unbelievable work ethic. The school loves the kid. You want to be around him. Got that rebounder mentality."

Cooper won the 2014 Biletnikoff Award as the nation's top receiver after finishing second with 1,727 receiving yards and 16 touchdowns for Alabama. He also finished third in Heisman voting that season, behind Oregon's Marcus Mariota and Wisconsin's Melvin Gordon III. 

The Oakland Raiders made Cooper the fourth pick in the 2015 NFL draft. He posted back-to-back 1,000-yard seasons in 2015 and 2016. The Raiders traded him to the Dallas Cowboys midway through the 2018 season, and the 26-year-old has surpassed 1,100 yards in each of his two full campaigns with the Cowboys. 

Before the start of last season, Chase opted out of playing amid the COVID-19 pandemic and to prepare for the 2021 NFL draft. 

Despite not having any game tape from 2020, Chase is expected to be one of the first players taken in this year's draft. 

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NFL.com's Daniel Jeremiah compared Chase's talent to that of Anquan Boldin and Steve Smith, citing his "exceptional blend of quickness, strength and playmaking ability."

He was one of many standout offensive players for LSU during the team's undefeated national championship season in 2019. He led the nation with 1,780 receiving yards and 20 touchdowns to become the first Tigers player since Josh Reed in 2001 to win the Biletnikoff Award as the nation's top receiver. 

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