Throughout watching prospect film during my scouting process, Jeudy has undoubtedly been the most fun player to evaluate by a mile. Inconsistency and concentration drops plague his game, but his electrifying play style and meticulous route-running are things of beauty. The last two Alabama receivers to go in the first round of the NFL Draft were Amari Cooper and Calvin Ridley, and his resemblance in play style to each of those guys is uncanny.
Jeudy wasted no time to burst onto the scene, showing just how special he was in 2018. After not getting much playing time as a freshman with Calvin Ridley ahead of him on the depth chart, he won the Biletnikoff Award as the nation’s best receiver in his 2018 sophomore season. That season, the star receiver out of ‘Bama put up over 1300 receiving yards, 14 receiving touchdowns, and averaged an astounding 19.3 yards per reception with 68 receptions. In 2019 as a senior, his yardage and touchdown totals came down to Earth but he still posted 1,163 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns on the season.
Jeudy may have ran a 4.45 at the combine, but he plays with 4.3 type speed while creating immense separation due to a sudden release, cookie-cutter routes, and consistent tempo and burst in and out of his cuts. Meanwhile, he becomes a blur after the catch and almost always is guaranteed to make the first defender miss in the open field. With an electric and high-upside play style to complement his arsenal of talent, he provides an exciting prospect at the receiver position. However, concerns of consistency and focus at the catch point remain. It will be extremely interesting to see what team takes a chance on the upside he has to offer.
Jeudy’s #1 weapon is undoubtedly his immaculate route-running ability. His route running alone can be broken down in several areas.
Timestamp – 6:50
The former Biletnikoff winner has absolutely stunning acceleration and burst off of the line, making flat-footed defensive backs pay at the line of scrimmage. He is patient to asses the corner and sudden to put them on their heels. His burst here to blow right past the corner gives him an advantage from the start of the route, forcing the cornerback to react in coverage instead of being able to play aggressively.
Timestamp – 8:38
Jeudy’s route should be deemed as straight assault, especially when one sees what he did to the defensive back. This is just one of the many examples of Jeudy’s absurd route running. First, it all starts with the release. From the beginning, he quickly shed off the corner’s jam and got him on his heels with a blazing release. From that point on Jeudy was able to force the corner to over-compensate and sell to his vertical release, which in-turn set up Jeudy to abruptly drop his pad level and stop on a dime with his immaculate and sudden change of direction.
With the corner having to respect Jeudy’s vertical release due to the early disadvantage, the receiver was able to stop on a dime and use the corner’s momentum against him. In turn, the corner went flying. Sudden acceleration and burst off the release in order to avoid the jam at the line as well as gaining a step on the corner, all combined with Jeudy’s innate ability to stop on a dime, sent the cornerback stumbling in embarrassing fashion on this play.
Timestamp – 0:00
Although he wasn’t the first read on this play, Jeudy still jumped out on the film with his incredible route. His speed and burst in and out of his cuts here made the cornerback put his hand in the ground just to keep up with Jeudy’s first cut, and then the second one up-field put him on the turf. Trying to keep up with his cookie-cutter precision and blazing play speed in and out of his cuts during his routes is a death wish for cornerbacks time and time again.
Timestamp – 4:48
On this play, Jeudy lets his eyes tell lies. From even before the play, Jeudy was looking at the middle of the field pre-snap and then stemmed his route inside before dropping his pad level for a sudden cut to the defensive back’s outside shoulder. His deceptive change in direction, eye manipulation, and the shift in pad level for a sudden outside release once the corner breaks on the inside fake is immaculate attention to detail in Jeudy’s route running on this play.
Timestamp – 1:35
On this play, Jeudy utilized a combination of his blazing vertical speed and high route IQ in order to burn past a cushion coverage for a touchdown that he made look effortless. Jeudy went 0 to 100 in an instant off the release and forced the cornerback to open up his hips downfield, attacking the defender’s blindside with an outside release, fully turning the defensive back around and burning past him for six. Great manipulation of the cornerback’s blindside combined with his natural speed made an unguardable play.
Timestamp – 2:42
This is just one of many examples of Jeudy’s lateral burst in the open field and his innate ability to make the first defender miss after the catch. With a dizzying and sudden cut here, Jeudy put his foot in the ground for an ankle-snatching juke that made the defender take a knee on the tackle attempt.
Timestamp – 18:33
Once again, Jeudy here shows how he just toys with defenders after the catch as he makes multiple defenders miss after the catch on his way to a huge gain.
Timestamp – 5:52
His open-field elusiveness and ability to make defenders tackle air with the ball in his hands is once again demonstrated beautifully on this play, as he evades his way to a first down.
Timestamps – 0:22; 1:39
These are ncredible examples of his ability to put defenders in a blender with his speed, lateral burst, and elusiveness after the catch.
Timestamps – 0:08; 0:35; 1:30; 2:48
Jeudy also can utilize his blazing straight-line speed to burn cornerbacks downfield or even take an underneath route to the house on any given play. His 4.45 40-time at the combine really doesn’t do justice to his play speed.
- Sudden burst and 0 to 60 speed off of the line
- Deadly vertical speed to bust a secondary open on any given play
- Great attention to detail and change of direction in his routes
- No lost tempo or wasted movement in and out of his cuts
- Deadly with the ball in his hands
Jeudy suffers from dumbfounding focus drops. He’ll create separation or get behind the last defender on a deep route just to let the pass bounce off or zip through his hands. It seems also often that Jeudy seems to just have poor hand placement on short timing routes, which also leads to frustrating drops. Additionally, he’s been caught dropping some quick throws as he occasionally looks to run with the ball before focusing through the catch.
Really, Jeudy doesn’t have any blatant weaknesses in his game outside of the simple fact that he leaves big plays on the field from time-to-time due to questionable drops and lapses in focus at the point of the catch.
His pro comparison is almost way too perfect and the fact that it’s a former Alabama first-rounder makes it more interesting: Amari Cooper. Both are speed demon receivers with highlight reels full of breathtaking routes, in which the two make opposing defensive backs look silly on a repeated basis. However, their largest criticism comes from the occasional concentration drop, which leaves plays on the field and coaches scratching their heads. Jeudy’s play speed, build, and route precision also reminds me quite a bit of Terry McLaurin over in Washington.
Although his drops and overall consistency may be enough to scare teams out of taking him in the early phase of the first-round (the top ten picks), a team is bound to take a chance on Jeudy’s upside within the top 16 picks. Seeing which receiver goes off the board first between him and Lamb will be interesting come Draft Day.
With limited cap space and star wideout Chris Godwin set to hit the open market after next season, Jeudy would make all the sense in the world at 14 for Tampa Bay. Putting a deep threat who can take quick underneath passes to the house on any given play would do wonders for Brady in Tampa, while providing the Bucs with a successor to Chris Godwin at the WR2 spot across from Mike Evans. He won’t make it past pick fourteen by Tampa Bay.