Denzel Mims – Baylor University – 6’3″ 207 lbs. – October 10, 1997 (age 22 years)
- Height and speed combo to play at the NFL level.
- Big catch radius that expands laterally and vertically.
- Locates the ball quickly and can adjust his route to make the reception.
Here is Mims using his full frame to grab this ball. Quick stop on the comeback and is somehow able to adjust to the throw. It’s possible that he was supposed to work to the border for the throw, but it’s impressive nonetheless.
- 40 time and long speed is impressive.
- Big strides and top end speed to stay in front of a DB once he beats them.
- Speed shows up later in routes than you’d expect, and shows better in the long areas of his game than short area burst.
- Can struggle to get going against physical coverage on short routes.
Quick outside move with a little hand battle down the field until Denzel can get one last arm clearance and use his speed to pull away.
- Shows the ability to consistently get inside on a defender for the slant.
- Uses hands well at the line, during his break, or down field to clear space.
Because of his height near the goal line, defenders have to respect both the outside and inside routes. He sets up the Texas DB, getting him to think fade, and then breaks inside. Rather than a typical low, out in front throw, his height allows the QB to toss it high so Mims can grab it away from the DB.
- Plus body control.
- Times his routes and jumps well, can extend and high point the ball.
- Strong back shoulder receiver that uses his combination of gifts to position defenders.
- Showed that he can toe tap on the sideline and in the end zone.
- Uses hands and body positioning to create space for the catch.
- Despite his ability to go up over people, he doesn’t handle contact at the point of reception consistently.
- While he can reach outside of his frame to go get it, he does bobble the ball on occasion, which can let defenders knock it away.
Gets the first step on his defender to the outside. Safety sees it and begins to close. Mims locates the ball and keeps the corner on the inside. Once the ball is on the way, he adjusts his route to the outside and gets in position. He extends, grabs the ball, and brings it in before taking the hit of the safety arriving late.
Here’s another example of Mims body control on this comeback route. Defender doesn’t quite buy the fake to the outside, and they work down the sideline together. Again, Mims locates the ball quickly and breaks off his route. The jump and toe tap may be a bit extra, but whatever it takes to make the catch.
- There are times where he will take over a match up and they’d feed him the ball.
Prior to these 2 receptions for the score, Mims also had a 40 yard reception to start the drive. This is vs UGA corner, Eric Stokes, so, not just abusing terrible BIG 12 defenses. The first grab is nothing special, sits down in front of the defender and blocks him out for the first down. I would actually like to see him take a step toward the ball and meet it, but it works.
After that play, they go right back to Mims with a one on one fade route. He battles the entire route, but gets his hands clear and his body turned just at the last second to grab the ball for the score.
He catches the first ball out of bounds here, but they go right back to him on another back shoulder throw and he completes it this time.
- Limited route tree.
- Mental lapses in his game.
- Times where he and the QB aren’t on the same page, or he runs the wrong route.
- Concentration goes in and out, seems to enjoy focusing on his one on one within the the game.
- Doesn’t consistently work back to the ball on comebacks and outs. Allows the ball to get to him rather than attacking, and gives defenders times to recover.
3rd quarter with Baylor making a comeback. This is a play where he’s likely the primary or 2nd read. He gets caught looking at the sideline… I wanted to say it was just him checking in with the ref, but it seems pretty clear he’s talking to somebody.
With the Jets:
- The Jets entered the draft with a pretty clear need at the WR position and took Mims in the 2nd round.
- The only person who comes into the 2020 season with a clear role is likely Jamison Crowder out of the slot.
- New arrival Breshad Perriman has been getting some hype in the fantasy community, but has failed to stay on the field or make much of a difference for Baltimore, Cleveland, or Tampa Bay.
- Josh Doctson is still in town. While there were high hopes for Josh at one point, he has failed to progress as well.
- If you start looking at the Jets outside receiver options, they seem similar with Perriman, Doctson, and Mims, but we’ll look for 2 of them to take the lead if we get training camp.
- Given Mims was a 2nd rounder, I’d expect he gets every opportunity to be at least the primary X receiver in the offense.
- The opportunity and athletic ability are there to make a difference early on with Mims. If Darnold continues to progress, he may bring Mims along with him.
- I currently have Mims as my 7th rookie WR. He comes in toward the top of my third tier of WRs as guys that seem to be missing one thing or another. Either they are a bit raw like Mims, or they lack the athletic ability to present elite upside.
General note for all rookie WR: The first season can be rough as they refine their craft. They have to learn a playbook along with their QB tendencies. This year, it could be even more of a learning curve as teams may not get their standard amount of OTAs and a full training camp.