Earlier in the season, before the McNabb drama took center stage, I was clammoring for a wide reciever with our 1st round pick. The two guys I coveted most were A.J.Green from Georgia, and Alabama's stud wideout Julio Jones. Well, the WR thats been talked about most this season is Oklahoma States Justin Blackmon. The 6'1" 208 pound Biletnikoff Award winner(nations best Wide Receiver), and consensus AP All-American led the nation with 111 receptions for 1,782 yards and 20 touchdowns. His performance in Wednesday's Valero Alamo Bowl was nothing short of amazing. In the game, Blackmon cought 9 passes for 117 yards and 2 touchdowns, this despite being played in a man-over rolling coverage.
Despite his magical season, red flags exist for me in reguards to Blackmons NFL prospect status, and it has nothing to do with his performance on the field. For me, when I see Blackmon, I think Devon Thomas. Devon Thomas was as physically gifted as they come, measuring at 6'2" and weighing 215 pounds. He ran the 40 in 4.38, and had a vertical that was out of the gym. In his second season at Michigan State(as a Junior) he set receiving records with 79 catches for 1260 yards and 8 touchdowns. Prior to that, Thomas had only 6 receptions for 90 yards in his first season with Sparty(sophomore season), after playing his first two season at Coffeyville Community College in Kansas(one was a redshirt).
As you all know, the Redskins spent a 2nd round pick in the 2008 NFL Draft on Devin Thomas, and in never worked out for both sides. The Redskins pointed to maturity issued with Thomas, and his innability to master the playbook. he was subsequently cut in 2010.
Blackmon, who before this season, accounted for just 20 receptions and 260 yards, may be that same type of one-hit-wonder that Thomas was. It's not that I doubt his physical skills; my concern centers around whether he is physically ready for the NFL, if in fact he decides to enter the draft early. He is only a sophomore, but since he redshirted his freshmen season, that makes him elligible under the NCAA rules of having to be at least 3 years removed from high school before being allowed to declare for the NFL Draft.
So in conclusion, I say to the front office, Buyer Beware! This package could be a dangerous one to open.