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Is N’Keal Harry the Alpha Dog at Wide Receiver the Redskins Need?

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Hogs Haven takes a look at 2019 NFL Draft prospects that could contribute to the Redskins

NCAA Football: Arizona State at Arizona Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

N’Keal Harry, WR
School: Arizona State | Conference: PAC-12
College Experience: Junior | Age: 21
Height / Weight: 6-2 / 228 lbs
Projected Draft Status: Top-50
NFL Comparison: Alshon Jeffery

College Statistics & Athletic Profile

Player Overview

N’Keal Harry is from the Caribbean island of Saint Vincent, and moved to Arizona with his grandmother when he was young. He became one of the most sought-after recruits in the country (top-20 overall) through his dominant high school career. He choose to stay locally and play for Arizona State, starting as a true freshman and leading all freshman in receiving yards nationally. The next two years he made first-team All-Pac-12. Harry is extremely close with his grandmother and he draws much inspiration from her. He chose to skip out on ASU’s bowl game to prepare for the draft.

Strengths

  • Big-bodied receiver with ability to make very difficult contested catches
  • Great body control and ball-tracking ability with strong hands
  • Converts redzone opportunities well with awareness of where he needs to be to stay in bounds
  • Alpha dog mentality on the field who bullies smaller corners with size and strength
  • Jump ball specialist
  • Gets the job done in RAC situations with deceptive wiggle and elusiveness

Weaknesses

  • Does not create separation downfield – looks to have average play speed
  • Willing but surprisingly poor blocker considering his size
  • Not explosive off the line or in and out of his breaks
  • Feet look heavy and slow in stutter release vs. press coverage

Media

How He Fits on the Redskins

In my opinion the biggest need for the 2019 Washington Redskins is more playmakers on offense. With Derrius Guice and Jordan Reed fully healthy, and AP re-signed, that means wide receivers. Unfortunately Josh Doctson appears to be a first-round bust, and other wideouts have either been injured or left in free agency. That shouldn’t scare the Redskins from spending another high draft pick on a receiver – or even on a guy with a similar play style to Doctson.

In a lot of ways, N’Keal Harry is what we thought Josh Doctson would be coming out of TCU. A big, physical target that isn’t a speed merchant, but automatic in the red zone and in jump ball situations. But it’s important to remember that Harry is a completely different person than Doctson, even if Redskins fans are skittish at their similar traits. He was the No. 1 ranked receiver coming out of high school and by all accounts a strong leader. Harry carries himself with a confident swagger and plays fearless. Not to mention that physically, he’s actually faster and stronger than Doctson.

Scheme-wise, he is a good fit for the Redskins’ offense and identity. Harry is a big, presentable target on screens, slants, and bubble routes that compliment a run-first style with Guice and AP. He can make spectacular catches downfield in play-action situations. His big, strong frame can be molded into a big-time run blocker on the edge.

I do think the Redskins need more speed at wide receiver and while Harry isn’t a slouch, he’s never going to be Tyreek Hill. But the Redskins can’t afford to overlook legitimately good players for a single trait. If they’re going to address wide receiver in the early rounds, they should take a serious look at N’Keal Harry if he’s available.