You saw him breakout this season en route to being named a Heisman finalist. Westbrook showcased his big-play ability week after week for the Oklahoma Sooners this past season. A bit of a late bloomer, Westbrook’s work ethic and character draws some red flags, but apparently he has shown signs of maturation. Will his dynamic play-making ability translate into him being a high draft pick?
Name: Dede Westbrook
Comparison: Marvin Harrison
Draft Grade: 3rd Round
Positives: Adequate height with big hands for his size. Proportioned body. Has gotten much stronger over the past two years. Explosive speed that won’t get tracked down. Exceptional quickness. Very good burst out of his cuts. A good leaper with great body control and high-points the ball. Will give up his body to make the play. Exceptional after the catch with good field vision, niftiness, and toughness. Great ability to track the deep ball and cradle rockets. Very good hands. Plucks, tucks and rarely lets the ball out in contested situations. Tremendous potential as a route-runner. Shows consistent effort as a blocker. Coaches at every level he’s played rave about him. Teammates love him. Has reportedly matured. Learned the importance and embraced weight training for the first time from Sterling Shepard.
Negatives: Below average size. Naturally lean and will never have an ideal height to weight ratio. Lacks arm length. Lacks a great catch radius. Strength and power will always be a weakness. Not a red-zone threat. Needs to improve as a blocker. Comes from a small down with bad influences. Has three kids and a disturbing record of police involvement in violent and highly emotional domestic disputes. Has a history of lower body injuries and a serious intestinal injury that will need to be looked into.
Outlook: Dede Westbrook is one of the most talented but also the most controversial senior receiver in this class. Westbrook brings great speed, quickness, focus, consistency and toughness to the table but his lack of size, injury history, and off-field issues are great concerns. Westbrook has come a long way from an unfortunate upbringing and poor decision-making and might be in a position to put it all behind him. Westbrook is nearly identical to a young Marvin Harrison in every way on the football field and has great potential. His value is in the top half of the third round.