D.J. Chark, WR
School: LSU | Conference: SEC
College Experience: Senior | Age: 21
Height / Weight: 6-3 / 199 lbs
Projected Draft Status: 3rd Round
NFL Comparison: Jehu Chesson
D.J. Chark has grown a lot physically and as a player since his arrival at LSU. The former 3-star prospect from Alexandria, Louisiana arrived on campus as a 6-1 / 175 lb wide receiver who wasn’t featured much at all during his freshman year. Chark eventually earned more time in the lineup throughout his career and all things considered, has impressed with his level of production considering how nonexistent the LSU QB play can be. Chark especially turned heads a few weeks ago when he had a good Senior Bowl week. Because of his limited opportunities, Chark is considered to be a high upside prospect. I wouldn't classify Chark as a natural pass catcher as he has a habit of fighting the ball at times and using his body to secure and has suffered some silly drops but he has improved his technique considerably since the start of his career. Chark’s size, quickness, and speed make him a good candidate to line up on the outside and use his skills to stretch the field. Chark tracks the deep ball relatively well and his release off the LOS is also relatively quick and smooth. He can bust zone coverage and can make the guy covering him man to man have a long day. Chark also is a decent returner and can make defenses follow him into the backfield when he lines up there. He may be categorized as a deep threat only at the next level if he doesn't expand his game but he has a lot of room to grow.
- Good combination of size, speed, and athleticism for the position. Not quite a red zone threat in the traditional sense but should have a lot more opportunities there than he had in college.
- If he gets a clean release he can and will run by you. Quick and fast he will make defenses give an extra 15 yards of cushion once he catches his first couple of bombs.
- Route running looks to be adequate with his best quality there coming with his shake feint and other sell moves will have tighter hipped corners and safeties on their heels if they bite.
- Will fight for the ball at the catch point.
- Offers value as a returner.
- Two trick pony? Did not run a diverse tree at LSU and most of his production comes from the deep ball. There are some comebacks and hitches on tape but what about slants, drags, posts, etc.
- Not a natural when catching the football. Double clutches, body catches etc. The process of the catch and tucking it away will have to be refined for the next level. On tape saw a couple of drops and fumbles after the catch when corners challenged the entire range of motion.
- Decent at tracking the ball but may be overconfident in his ability to adjust waits to the last second to set things up and sometimes it winds up being too late which leads to drops.
- Either needs to learn how to consistently win with his speed or get more aggressive at the LOS. When he is jammed his timing is off and he is ‘slow’ to recover.
Let’s see his work:
While the ITP team was at the Senior Bowl they watched the battle between LSU WR D.J. Chark and Alabama CB Levi Wallace. Then, they turned to they tape from the 2017 season: https://t.co/nItYXTkJ1E pic.twitter.com/O1ifuax2GS— Inside the Pylon (@ITPylon) January 31, 2018
Finished studying LSU WR DJ Chark last night. Love his game. He's going to be an excellent #2 WR with return value as well.— Daniel Jeremiah (@MoveTheSticks) February 19, 2018
How He Would Fit On The Redskins
There is little doubt that Chark would provide the speed opposite Doctson to stretch the field on offense and help the other receiving options. If Alex Smith needs a speedy deep threat he would have it in this guy. The question though is will that be Chark’s only specialty? For him, as a player, I would like his growth as a receiver to continue. With his size and speed Chark could not only be dangerous on deep balls but if developed and given the opportunity he could be dangerous on screens, slants, etc. Chark was limited by his team’s QB play through his career so speculation just how good he could be is fun and as a personal preference, I’m pulling for his game to be more well rounded so provide the Redskins with the most possibilities for offensive damage. Chark should be able to smooth out his body catching issues, and his ability to make timely adjustments through basic coaching. I think it will take time for him to get comfortable running more diverse routes or learning for to consistently get off the LOS cleanly. Ultimately I think he’s worth the investment in the 3rd round - maybe he’ll slide to the Redskins 4th round pick.