NAME: Jakobi Meyers
SCHOOL: North Carolina State
POSITION: Wide Receiver
CLASS: RS Junior
JERSEY: No. 11
RECRUITMENT RATING: 3-star
WT: 203 lbs
Separation Quickness – Quick feet and varies his pace well to lull defenders to sleep. Not the most explosive receiver and is still learning the finer points of the position. Seems to possess decent quickness, but footwork might not be where it needs to be yet. Wish there was more juice out of his cuts to really create max separation.
Ball Skills – Adjusted and high-pointed a ball between two defenders against Boston College that made my jaw drop. Was not utilized as a down-field, go-up-and-get-it type of receiver very often, but the flashes are intriguing. Did not see many drops on his tape. Has a big catch radius for a slot receiver and is fully comfortable going to get the ball outside his frame. Adjustments to off-target throws were frequent when necessary, and showed the concentration to finish in tight quarters. Will go get it over the middle of the field.
Speed/Burst – Long speed should be fine, but probably not going to test NFL defenses as a burner-type, even if he gets more reps on the outside. Builds up to top speed, but doesn’t have the easy access burst to separate or threaten off coverage off the snap. Rarely asked to win over the top in 1v1 situations at N.C. State.
Route-Running – Needs to sell vertically with better attention to detail to create separation underneath. On short-intermediate routes, must drop his pads off the line of scrimmage and sell vertically to eat up cushion, allows corners to sit on his underneath breaks by not pushing hard to open them up. Upright into his shorter route breaks, needs to drop hips, hard stop and work back to the ball. Attention to detail on the quick game, hard-stop/cut patterns (outs, hitches, curls, pivots) is inconsistent. Has picture-perfect reps where he varies pace and timing to create space. Others has hesitation out of his route breaks that is probably normal for a quarterback-turned-wide receiver, but still limits his impact.
Attempts to sell fakes with deceptive footwork, but can take too many steps and oversell it. Good vertical route runner, showing a little extra pep off the line of scrimmage and the ability to hit his cuts at full speed on post-corners and shake routes. It’s inconsistent, but definitely has the ability and confidence to use fakes and head nods in his routes to throw defenders off-balance. Terrific job finding space quickly in zone coverage, sees the field really well. I think his upside in this area is very real, and it’s impressive how far he’s come already.
Contested Catch – Not tasked with high-degree-of-difficulty catches often, but has flashed leaping ability and strong hands outside his frame. Had a couple high-point opportunities against Wake Forest that he timed right, but couldn’t finish. Definitely has a pair of mitts on him and can snag the ball away from his body despite tight coverage underneath. Capable of finishing with a defender on his hip, although I wouldn’t call it a trump card.
YAC – Uncreative after the catch, despite getting a healthy dose of manufactured touches on expansions and receiver screens. Not elusive in space and doesn’t have the desirable athletic traits to be a dynamic threat post-catch. Will fight for extra yards but doesn’t break many tackles. Is generally aware of oncoming defenders and savvy enough to cut back on them if they take a poor
Releases – Played heavily in the slot for N.C. State, so saw very few reps against press coverage in the six games that I watched. Doesn’t exactly explode into his patterns off the snap, and can struggle to sell vertically as a result. Has flashed quick feet that could translate well to his release game with more development. Big and quick enough to work off press coverage, but Florida State was the one game he saw a little soft press, and he struggled to separate.
Blocking – Good blocker who was asked to do a lot in N.C. State’s run/quick passing game. Stalk blocks under control and with hands inside, but could use a little more tenacity and grip strength to stay on contact. Has the size and tools to handle 1v1 assignments. even working down on linebackers.
Competitive Toughness – Will go over the middle and take a shot to make a play. Consistently unafraid going up at the catch point in front of linebackers with dangerous intentions. Willing and competitive blocker.
Athleticism/Size – Solid athlete who may lack the explosiveness of high-end players at his position. Has tremendous size and build for a slot receiver, and could project to move to the outside in the NFL.
BEST TRAIT – Ball Skills
WORST TRAIT – Explosiveness
RED FLAGS – None
An unfinished product who converted from quarterback three seasons ago, Meyers has made impressive progress as a receiver thanks to several natural abilities that have made the transition a smooth one. His ball skills and natural hands are easily the most impressive part of his game, as Meyers can adjust to snag the rock outside his frame or hold on over the middle while taking a shot. He may never be the most explosive separator, but his routes came along nicely this season. Definitely some upside there as he becomes more consistent.
I like Meyers as a big slot at the next level, but he has the quick feet and build to handle press coverage on the outside with a little development. His Combine testing and Senior Bowl performance will help determine just how high his upside is, but I think Meyers can carve out a productive role as a top three receiver for a team with a little more growth.
Routes – Executes his routes with good pace and timing as he works to his spots. Needs to develop nuance as a route runner to more consistently attack leverage and sell his breaks. Has run a fairly limited route tree. Works primarily from the slot which hasn’t yielded many reps to determine his ability to beat press coverage.
Hands – Squeezes and secures the ball firmly but isn’t immune to a drop. Is a fairly clean hands catcher that can snatch it outside his frame but will occasionally have one rattle around or needed to trap it against his frame. Improved from 2017 to 2018 but still room for growth and consistency.
Ball Skills – Game slows down for him at the catch point and he has success hauling in receptions through contact and in traffic. Excellent body control and concentration along the sideline. Capable of extending to the football in any direction to adjust to off-target throws. Will occasionally mistime playing the ball and not finish despite being in good positioning.
YAC Ability – Competitive after the catch and features smooth but not overly rapid acceleration. Can get stuck in one place for too long and does not always have a plan with the ball. Has good spatial awareness but isn’t dynamic with his elusive traits or a tackle breaker.
Release – Played almost exclusively from the slot and wasn’t often tasked with clearing press coverage. Had issues getting off contact in Senior Bowl practices and must develop his technique. Guilty of having too many steps and inviting DBs to crowd his frame early.
Play Speed – Long strides quickly eat up turf although he isn’t a burner. Doesn’t have top end elusive traits, quickness or speed. Play speed is ordinary. Doesn’t effectively sell vertical routes which exacerbates his modest long speed.
Blocking – Mostly gets his work done but there are plenty of reps where he falls off contact. Must improve his grip strength and play with better leverage to control more at the point of attack. Has the frame to be successful.
Play Strength – Physical at the catch point in contested situations. Gives effort as a blocker, even when working against linebackers. Willing to work the middle of the field and take a shot.
Versatility – Profiles as a slot receiver in the NFL that can work the short to intermediate areas of the field in a possession role. Modest ability to consistently win vertically and needs work to be an outside guy.
BEST TRAIT – Body Control
WORST TRAIT – Burst
RED FLAGS – None
Jakobi Meyers has transitioned nicely to the wide receiver position after switching over from quarterback just prior to the 2016 season. There are some oddities for a QB to WR convert, mainly his polish in terms of ball skills and body control. In addition, he doesn’t have the same juice one would expect for a guy making the switch to WR. Used primarily as a slot receiver at NC State, his best role in the NFL comes in the same spot given the technical growth needed in his release to clear press coverage. By year two/three, Meyers has the upside to be a reliable option in 3/4 WR sets as a short/intermediate threat that is fearless across the middle and savvy along the sideline.