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Replay: Best of the Week on Radio Thu Jun 13 - 02:00 PM | Tue Jun 18 - 11:55 AM Draft Board: Wide Receivers

After losing David Givens, Tim Dwight and Andre' Davis this offseason, receiver is a position the Patriots will have to seriously look at in the draft. Here is how we rate the prospects in what is considered to be a weak draft for receivers and some players we think could end up in New England.

1. Santonio Holmes, Ohio State – Makes a lot of tough catches and turns short gains into big plays. Runs very well after the catch and is tough to bring down in the open-field because of his knack of evading defenders. At 5-10, 185 pounds, doesn't have great size but is fearless going over the middle of the field. Doesn't always get great separation but has good body control and knows how to go up and get the ball in the air. Not the most polished receiver in the draft but the most physically gifted with upside.

2. Demetrius Williams, Oregon – The most complete receiver in the draft. Has soft hands and plays with great body control. Runs good routes and has the acceleration to go by defenders. A tall, physical receiver who does a lot of his work over the middle. Breaks a lot of tackles and takes the ball away from defenders. A good blocker who uses his size well. Put up big numbers as a senior, despite playing with a backup quarterback for the final four games of the season. Has the ability to be a quality No. 1 receiver in the NFL.

3. Chad Jackson, Florida – A polished receiver with great speed and good hands. Ranking him third is no slight on Jackson; I just really love Holmes and Williams. Very quick out of his breaks. Isn't afraid to go over the middle. Very elusive and has that extra gear in the open-field. Doesn't make as many big plays for a player with his speed. Catches the ball with his hands and rarely drops a pass. Has all the tools to be a very good pro receiver but isn't as fast on the football field as he is on a track.

4. Maurice Stovall, Notre Dame – A big receiver with exceptional body control. Can go up and fight defenders for the ball and get it at its highest point. Made a lot of tough catches last year at Notre Dame. Didn't run blazing 40-times but plays much faster on the football field. Physical player who breaks a lot of tackles. Doesn't always run by defenders but knows how to use his hands to create separation much like the Cowboys Michael Irvin used to do. Actually is very similar to Irvin in a lot of areas. Should be a solid second receiver at the pro level.

5. Sinorice Moss, Miami – Blazing speed and exceptional quickness much like his brother Santana. Is a nightmare for defenders once he gets into the open-field. Really shined at the Senior Bowl. Type of player teams can do a lot of different things with. A very dangerous return man. Doesn't always catch the ball with his hands and goes down easily. A good prospect because of his versatility. Better suited to be a No. 2 receiver who plays with a bigger, proven veteran on the other side so he won't see a lot of double teams.

6. Derek Hagan, Arizona State – Extremely productive college receiver who had three straight 1,000 yard seasons for the Sun Devils. Runs crisp routes and is quick out of his breaks. Is a tough guy to guard but his overall football speed isn't as fast as his 40-time suggests. Drops some catchable balls because he doesn't always use his hands and lets the ball get into his body. Is a big, physical receiver who runs a lot of short and intermediate routes. Had a terrible week at the Senior Bowl and needs to be more consistent catching the football but Hagan still has the skills to be a productive NFL receiver.

7. Todd Watkins, BYU – One of the more underrated receiver prospects. Tall receiver who is a big-time deep threat. Scored 15 touchdowns in two seasons at BYU, despite the team's inconsistent play at the quarterback position. Very good hands. Has a knack of making tough catches look easy. Made a lot of acrobatic plays in college. Readjusts well to the ball. Needs work on his route running and with his slim build he doesn't break a lot of tackles. Has excellent speed and acceleration. At the very least will be a dangerous deep threat in the NFL.

8. Jason Avant, Michigan – A three-year starter at Michigan, Avant is a physical receiver who knows how to use his hands well. Ran awful 40-times but was never known for his blazing speed in the first place. A pure possession receiver in the Keyshawn Johnson mold. Isn't quick out of his breaks but does a good job at catching the ball in traffic. Good instincts as a receiver helps to offset his lack of speed. Probably will never be a dominant NFL player but should develop into a nice complimentary receiver.

9. Mike Hass, Oregon State – A former walk on at Oregon State, had an extremely productive college career and showed improvement each season. Intelligent receiver who is probably the best route runner of any receiver in this draft. Has soft hands and while he doesn't have great speed, he's quick out of his breaks. One of those guys who just knows how to get open and will probably succeed at any level because of his work ethic and feel for the position. Reminds me of Troy Brown in many ways. May never be a Pro Bowl receiver in the NFL but should develop into a reliable, dependable target for some team.

10. Skyler Green, WR LSU – I'm not really in love with any of the other receiver prospects, so I'm going with Green here because of his explosiveness and ability to return kicks. Is never going to be a No. 1 but can be a very dangerous slot receiver and return man. Is extremely quick and elusive in the open field. Is small (5-9, 200) but built lock a rock. Has tremendous lower body strength. When he catches the ball in space, he's always a threat to score. Will be able to come in and help a team as a rookie because of his versatility. Has the ability to become one of the best return men in the NFL.


Moss – Moss is an exciting player but I don't know about a first-round draft pick. He never really set the world on fire at Miami. I know teams are infatuated with finding players who can do different things like Antwaan Randle El but I wouldn't pick Randle El in the first round of a draft. I think Moss will be a fine NFL player and a dangerous kick returner but he probably will never live up to where he's actually selected in the draft.

Greg Lee, Pittsburgh – Lee put up some good numbers in college but I wasn't impressed with him. He catches the ball with his body and has trouble separating from defenders. I thought he had trouble concentrating and that contributed to him dropping some catchable balls. Lee does have some athletic ability but he doesn't go up and fight defenders for the ball. I see him more of a fifth or sixth round pick, while others have him going on day one of the draft.


Williams– In a weak year for receivers, Williams could end up being the best player to come out of this class. I think he has the total package. He's big, physical, goes across the middle, makes the tough catch and has the speed to run by defenders. He totally abused Fresno State'sRichard Marshall – a first round prospect – when the two were matched up against each other last year. Williams knows how to use his size to shield himself from defensive backs and he makes a lot of tough catches in tight coverage. He is projected to go in the second or third round and that would be a steal in my book. May not be the best fit for the Patriots system but Williams has the potential to be a star for some team.

Hass – Like I said earlier, Hass would probably be successful at any level. He's not going to wow you when you look at him but he's one of those guys that just understands how to play the game of football and is very comfortable on the field. Hass doesn't have great speed but his ability to get open negates that. He's a very reliable receiver who knows how to find the soft spot in the zone or beat one-on-one coverage. While his straight-line speed isn't great, he's extremely quick out of his breaks. His ability to run crisp routes really makes Hass a tough guy to cover. Probably won't be a star but should have a long, productive NFL career.

Possible Patriots

Holmes – Ohio State head coach Jim Tressel said on Sirius NFL Radio that the Patriots have shown interest in a number of Buckeyes, including Holmes. I doubt New England is going to take a receiver with the 21st selection but if they do take one that high, it will probably be Holmes. The big-play receiver would not only instantly give a boost to the New England receiving corps, he still has plenty of room to grow and get better. Holmes and Deion Branch would provide one of the most explosive tandems in the NFL.

Stovall – Stovall is the logical choice to become a Patriot because he was in the same offense last year under Charlie Weis at Notre Dame. He actually said at the Combine that he's familiar with some of the Patriots terminology already. Stovall would give the Patriots that big, possession-type receiver they haven't had in a while. In general, rookie receivers rarely come into the NFL and make a big splash in their first year but Stovall's familiarity with the Patriots system may give him a heads up when it comes to getting adjusted to the pro game. If he's still on the board in Round 2, Stovall will definitely be a possibility for the Patriots.

Hass – If the Patriots wait until the middle rounds to address the receiver position, Hass would be a good choice. He's smart enough to pick up the Patriots system quickly and contribute as a slot receiver as a rookie. Hass is the type of player who will earn Tom Brady's trust quickly with his soft hands and ability to get open. He will be more effective in some systems than others at the pro level but the offense the Patriots run is taylor made for him.

Green– Green already has ties to the Patriots organization – Jarvis Green is his cousin. Skyler said at the Combine the Patriots were showing a lot of interest in him as a receiver and return man and that he would love to come up North and play with his cousin. New England has aggressively addressed their special teams this offseason but they're still looking for an explosive kick returner. Even if they draft a receiver early on, expect the Patriots to give Green a look in the middle rounds because of what he brings to the table on special teams.

Reminder: Be sure to check out on both days of the draft. We will have a draft blog going Saturday and Sunday - commenting on which picks we like and which ones we don't. We will also be discussing what impact certain selections will have on the Patriots draft plans. Also, PFW in Progress will be on from 3-6 pm Eastern time on Saturday and 12-3 pm Eastern time on Sunday. will have to most extensive draft coverage around so make sure to drop by while you're enjoying the best day of the year.

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