When the Philadelphia Eagles drafted JJ Arcega-Whiteside in the second round of the 2019 NFL Draft, it was to be the team’s wide receiver X of the future.
Compared to Alshon Jeffery during the pre-draft process, Standford Pride had it all; he was tall, athletic, and had the pedigree to be a true elite red zone pedigree. After putting on a splendid performance at the combine, JJAW cemented his draft status with a 4.49 40-yard dash on Stanford’s pro day and effectively earned his ticket to the top-60 in the draft. of the 2019 NFL.
And then, well, Arcega-Whiteside entered the field. Now granted, JJAW has a few strong points on his reel, some as a blocker, some as a receiver, but Jeffrey doesn’t, and now with his fourth pro season about to begin, he It’s entirely possible that he’s looking for a new team. by the end of August.
Could the Philadelphia Eagles fix their draft and sign/trade for a proven product later this month? Not only could they, but frankly they should, but even if we’re all lining up for DK Metcalf/Allen Robinson/Mike Williams jerseys at the Pro Shop in the not too distant future, that doesn’t mean Howie Roseman’s job. . is made. No, with only two wide receivers, DeVonta Smith and Quez Watkins, serious game time guaranteed next season, the Birds should seriously consider adding one, maybe even two wide receivers to this year’s class, especially one like Treylon Burks, who just showed up at the combiner.
Treylon Burks is what the Philadelphia Eagles wanted JJAW to be.
When you put on the Treylon Burks band, it’s hard not to be impressed.
Whether deployed as a big lunge for the Arkansas Razorbacks or played at his presumed natural position on the outside, Burks is a big, fast, strong pass catcher who provides his quarterback with a big target on contested or planned open passes. Despite playing under three different head coaches and catching passes from a different starting quarterback in each of his three seasons in Fayetteville, Burks ended his college career with 146 receptions for 2,399 yards. and 18 touchdowns. His numbers and play improved over the seasons, and Burks ended his run with the Razorbacks on a high, catching 66 passes for 1,104 yards and 11 touchdowns as a junior against some of the best cornerbacks the SEC has ever had. to offer.
For teams like, oh I dunno, the Philadelphia Eagles, watching a wide receiver the size of a linebacker run on cornerbacks both from the slot and on the perimeter had to be impressive, but you had to wonder how well Burks’ game would translate. in the NFL and how well he would be able to perform against much improved defensive foes. If his tests matched his strip, there was no doubt that Burks would be off the board by pick 20 in the 2022 NFL Draft, but if he instead turned in a slow 40 and struggled with some of the other sporting tests like the 3-cone, wide jump or vertical jump, questions would arise about his ceiling as a player and how big a role he could play in a pro-style offense.
Well, luckily for Burks and his legions of fans, the pride of Warren, Arkansas, came to Indianapolis, saw the rest of the competition, and kept his first-round dreams alive. Despite being the heaviest wide receiver in the combine at 6-foot-2 and 225 pounds, Burks ran a 4.55 40, which isn’t, like DK Metcalf’s level gear, but could have been much worse and ranked first in arms length at 33.5 and third in overall wingspan at 79.125. Although Burks opted out of the bench press, he achieved some truly impressive lifting numbers during his time in Arkansas and his Giannis Antetokounmpo-sized hands, which required custom 4XL gloves from Nike, surely courted more. only a few talent evaluators when interviewing the team. .
According to Joe Castro from “Philly Philly The Podcast”, one of Burks’ interviews came with your friendly neighborhood Philadelphia Eagles; take with that what you will.
Although Burks didn’t leap from the gym, landing wide, vertical jumps that were historically in the lower 50th percentile, few expected the tall receiver to have blocking jumps, with his game much closer. from that of Joel Embiid. physical than the physical form of Nerlens Noel.
Needless to say, if you’re the general manager of a team looking to add size, power and a 50-50 threat on the outside, Burks has to be in the conversation.
Is Treylon Burks a perfect prospect? No, but frankly, very few prospects are. Some will quibble with Burks’ jump numbers, and others will be sad that he didn’t run a 4.4 instead of being relieved that he didn’t run a 4.7. IMHO, Burks’ numbers have only confirmed what his tape clearly shows, that he’s a Tee Higgins-type performer who could have a similar impact on the Philadelphia Eagles offense, especially when he’s partnered with DeVonta Smith, Quez Watkins and whoever stays in time for Week 1. And as for JJ Arcega-Whiteside? Well, if Burks is added to the draft, especially with the 15th, 16th or even 19th overall pick, it seems unlikely that he will live to see another season in South Philly.