The Buccaneers are certainly working day and night to decide who they’ll be targeting at #19 in the upcoming NFL Draft. One wide receiver from Western Michigan could be the guy.
Every franchise has its boisterous fans, and the Buccaneers are no different. Ask the average dedicated Bucs supporter who they want at receiver this spring, and Corey Davis is going to enter the conversation at some point. No scouting reports are guarantees of future success, but let’s look at what the Senior from Wheaton, Illinois has to offer his soon-to-be NFL employer.
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WHO: Corey Davis
SCHOOL: Western Michigan University
HEIGHT/WEIGHT: 6’3” / 213 lbs
2016 Season Stats:
- 97 Receptions / 1,500 yards / 15.5 yards per catch / 19 touchdowns
- W. Michigan @ Ball State (12 catches / 272 yards / 22.7 ypc / 3 touchdown)
- W. Michigan @ Kent State (1 catches / 18 yards / 18.0 ypc / 0 touchdowns)
- *W. Michigan @ Wisconsin (6 catches / 73 yards / 12.2 ypc / 1 touchdowns)
- **W. Michigan @ Ohio State (6 catches / 42 yards / 7.4 ypc / 0 touchdowns)
*Conference Championship or Bowl Game
- Long Speed
- Run After Catch Ability
- Route Running
- Ball Tracking
- Attacks the Ball
- Lacks Quickness Off the Line
- Seldom Used in Goal-to-Go Situations
- Prefers to Cradle-Catch Deep Passes
- Loose with the Ball when Running
Corey Davis fits best working on the outside where he can use his long stride and deceptive speed to get free from coverage. Should be paired with a quicker receiver opposite him as he is best when working downfield against defenses. Provides electric ability to maneuver through defenders on screen passes with a second gear to gain separation from players with average to slightly above average speed.
No Significant Injuries
No Significant Off-Field Issues
Good perimeter receiver with slot ability when needed. Will compete for top receiving numbers amongst rookies unless he goes to a one-dimensional passing attack lacking other weapons to take defenders away from Davis.
Top-20 wide receiver with pro-bowl projection and the ability to work short and long routes equally effective.
A senior wide receiver from the Western Michigan University, the Broncos star player has gone from being a two-star high school recruit to an NFL Draft prospect with first-round grades popping up all over the scouting community.
With four straight seasons of 50+ catches and at least 900 yards receiving, Davis has proven he can be productive on the field to a point where his inferior opposition playing in the MAC doesn’t really matter.
Playing against the Ohio State Buckeyes in 2015 against future first-round pick Eli Apple, he was able to bring in six catches for 42 yards despite having a smaller frame and playing on a 1-2 team against the defense which would carry their team to a Fiesta Bowl win against Notre Dame.
As the FBS record holder for career receiving yards, Davis has made waves since entering the collegiate ranks by being named Freshman of the Year in the MAC (2013) and being named First Team All-MAC three years in a row following that.
As a pro, the receiver projects to become a legitimate year-one threat on the outside and carries an added bonus of being able to work from the slot as well.
His ability to work a screen into a big play isn’t commonly found, and every team will fall in love with the fact this young man doesn’t stop working his route until the whistle stops.
Downfield, coaches will ask him to stab the ball better as he tends to allow the ball into his arms rather than going up to take the pass out of the air. Against NFL safeties and cornerbacks, this habit will cause him to get separated from the ball more times than can be accepted.
He’ll get the better of some secondaries though, simply because he doesn’t look as fast as he is. His long stride looks slightly effortless, but given a runway of about 5-7 yards, he can shift into a gear which will allow him to beat those who underestimate him.
Tends to carry the ball loose and away from his body when running and doesn’t feel a defender around him.
Pro defenders will key in on this and unless he fixes it there’s a lowlight of the ball being stripped from him coming in his future.
Moving into and beyond his rookie season, he’ll need to focus on getting into his routes quicker, especially on short slant routes.
As a blocker, he holds his own on the perimeter, and as he continues to grow in size and strength he should become even more effective.
His talent is attracting plenty of attention, but his work ethic is what will make him successful in the NFL. He simply never takes a play off.
Projected Draft Position: Middle First Round
Pro Comparison: Demaryius Thomas
Who will the Bucs take off the board when their turn in the first round comes up? We’ll all have to wait and see.
You can rest assured though, Corey Davis has made his case to be on their draft board, and all of the scouts sitting in the war room will have their hands full making a decision if they don’t go with the wide receiver from Western Michigan University.
Who do you want the Bucs to take in this year’s draft? Sound off in the comments or on Twitter and stay tuned as we continue to bring you more draft coverage from reports, to opinions and of course the always entertaining mock draft.