Justin Jefferson – Louisiana State University – 6’1″ 202 lbs. – January 16, 1999 (21 years old)

  • Instinctual downfield threat. 
  • Good fake step to get past DBs. 
  • Times his acceleration well to create separation. 
  • Locates the ball well in the air and great body control to adjust.
  • Uses hands well and times his body adjustment to clear space at the point of reception.

Combines a bit of everything in the clip below. This isn’t the hard fake step, but he still times his burst around the outside well. He locates the ball early and keeps his defender on the inside until it’s time to make the reception. He gives the defender a hand clear before reaching up to grab the ball.

  • Wide catch radius with his ability to grab the ball in any direction (high reach or low scoop, behind or over the shoulder).
  • Trusted target in the red zone with strong hands to take the hit and hold on.
  • Breaks in the short and intermediate aren’t particularly sharp, but he’s a smart receiver that gets to his spot on the field. 
  • Possible that he may be limited to slot work as he struggles with more physical corners. Ability to create separation underneath, on his own, is questionable.  
  • A bit surprised that he checked in at 6’1″ given his play style and how he looks next to some of the other WRs on his own team. 

Through 3 defenders with one closing quickly, Justin has the trust to make the grab, and hold, for the score. This is one of his more crisp inside breaks, although still not special. The burst around the LB allows him to find the space for the catch. 

  • Recognizes the scramble situation well and works to get toward an area that will give the QB a chance. 
  • Strong blocker. 
  • Good reactions to come down with throws that he doesn’t see until the last second.
    • As a negative to this point, he does seem to lack some awareness on short and intermediate plays.
      • Not getting his eyes back to the QB quick enough on short breaking routes. 
      • Not recognizing the coverage during the play to adjust his route or find the correct spot against zone. 
      • Doesn’t show the same improvisation he displays in the scramble drill for his initial route. 

Burrow does a terrific job of keeping this play alive. Justin starts this play streaking down the left side. Realizes the play has broken down and breaks toward the sideline. 

  • Despite his speed, he’s not overly explosive with the ball in his hands. Just isn’t overly elusive in those one on one open field match ups.
  • He relies on his vision to see the running lanes clearly, and then, utilizes his speed rather than making a defender miss. 
  • Can pull out of the occasional weak tackle (as in the clip above). 
  • While not as explosive as others, he is efficient in the open field, getting what is available to him. 
  • Does show a knack for finding first down markers and the end zone. 

This is about as good as his open field ability gets. Initial burst up field. Then, a nice lateral move, but stumbles a bit before getting back up to speed, pulling away from a diving tackler. The block outside doesn’t hold up and he’s tripped up trying to make one last jump outside. 

 

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