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NFL Draft

2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report: WR Tylan Wallace

  • The Draft Network
  • December 24, 2020
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PROSPECT SUMMARY – TYLAN WALLACE

Tylan Wallace has a twin brother, Tracin, that has always been a huge part of his life. The two are always seen together and have remained teammates all of their lives, even now at Oklahoma State, where both are receivers. Both standout athletes at Fort Worth South Hills High School (Texas), Tylan was a three-sport athlete who also participated in baseball and track and field. His most success came on the gridiron and there was no lack of motivation on it. After his brother suffered back-to-back ACL tear injuries in 2015 and 2016, Tylan made sure to make his brother proud even though he didn’t have his favorite quarterback throwing him the ball on Friday nights. He still ranks among the state leaders in receiving yards with career totals of 182 catches for 3,760 yards and 48 touchdowns. It was an illustrious three-year run that was capped off with being named to the 2017 Under Armour All-American Game followed by continuing his playing bond with his twin brother in Stillwater.

Aligning mostly as the Z receiver predominantly to the right side only, Wallace has been a prolific option in the team's offense. An offense with mostly Air Raid principles, his responsibilities were limited to a select few when running routes on the perimeter. Possessing average speed, his most explosive plays have come on vertical 50-50 balls where he could show his competitiveness and determination by attacking the ball out of the air. Also asked to perform routes in the short areas, he was a frequent target on the backside of run-pass options. Wallace’s talents were a bit hidden as a route-runner due to the fixated approach of required routes within the scheme, but he’s been able to show off his unique hand-eye coordination specifically at the catch point.

Ideal Role: Starting Z receiver.

Scheme Fit: Air Coryell – Field Receiver

FILM EVALUATION

Written by Jordan Reid

Games watched: Tulsa (2020), Kansas (2020), Texas (2020), West Virginia (2020), Oklahoma (2020), Miami (2020)

Best Game Studied: Tulsa (2020, 2nd half), Texas (2020), Kansas (2020)

Worst Game Studied: Oklahoma (2020), Miami (2020)

Route Running: Involved in a high uptempo and Air Raid offense, Wallace’s routes were limited to go routes, quick right-now perimeter screens, occasional slants, and out routes that were involved in run-pass options. As a right-side-only route-runner, Wallace has spent the majority of his career on the outside. Playing sparingly in the slot, he’s only been used on deep over routes through the middle of the defense attacking the opposite hash marks. A high-kneed runner, Wallace has average speed, but mastered the routes asked of him within the scheme. A smooth cutter in and out of his breaks while moving laterally, he is a bit of a choppy stepper at the top of routes when aiming to drive back downhill. 

Hands: Wallace is a consistent hands-catcher that can extend his hands away from his body and attack the ball out of the air. Showing these capabilities at all three levels of the field, he hardly ever displays any challenges with reeling the ball in. Natural hands and body transitions, Wallace has had lots of targets throughout his four-year career. Catch awareness is one of his better traits, as he’s knowledgeable about the types of techniques to utilize in order to shield his body from harm while also being able to secure catches. 

Separation: When attacking the deeper regions of the field vertically between the hashes and numbers, there’s a recurrence of catches that involve tightroping the sideline. Because of his average vertical speed, he struggles to get on top of defenders and stack them with his body positioned running in front of them. Instead, they are able to successfully squeeze him to the sideline, often causing minimal room for error in throwing windows for quarterbacks. Because of the threat of deep shots down the field, teams were hesitant with playing man-to-man or challenging wideouts at the line when playing the Cowboys. 

Release Package: Limited by the scheme to an extent, many plays were designed for him to speed release outside. Releasing outside as quickly as possible, he wasn't afforded much time to work a release in order to keep his frame clean. Many matchups were able to ride and guide him to the sideline because of the design of the scheme for its outside receivers. Wallace hasn’t shown the consistency with getting hands off of him when defenders are able to punch and strike into his frame. His true skills with releases won’t be known until he’s outside of the current scheme in postseason all-star contests and the beginning stages of his pro career.

Run After Catch: A competitive runner after the catch, Wallace runs to vacated areas and attempts to get the yardage that’s apparent. When catching quick passes or screens on the perimeter, he has the body strength necessary to withstand contact from the first defender and also break tackles afterward. Wallace shows acceleration in some areas of his game, but the lack of gears after the catch is noticeable. 

Ball Skills: Wallace has unique hand-eye coordination coupled with high-end ball skills to go along with a rugged frame that reduces the difficulty levels of catches for him. He has shown to be capable of catching the ball within and outside of his immediate parameters. On underthrown passes, his aggressiveness is evident. Wallace makes it an emphasis to gather both of his feet before forcefully jolting vertically in order to pluck the ball out of the air. He’s comfortable with having to come back to passes in order to catch them no matter the locations of them.  

Football IQ: Wallace’s game is predicated upon seeing and attacking certain leverage points of defensive backs. In a scheme with many air-raid principles, he’s been required with reading and attacking the leverage points of the opposition. Also required to frequently be involved as a run blocker, he’s able to stand inside on run concepts and shield perimeter threats. He won’t go over the top or try to create lanes with his blocking, but he'll do just enough to get in the way.

Versatility: Wallace has played all of his career on the right side of the formation. Spending some time in the slot, he’s only spent time there as a decoy or over route runner. Even though he wasn’t used in the slot often, he displayed flashes of what potential value he could produce there even if not being targeted. Because of his reliability with 50-50 balls on the perimeter as well as his lack of consistent vertical speed, he may be better served with spending time in the slot. 

Competitive Toughness: His competitiveness is frequently displayed at the catch point when running vertical routes along the sideline. A go-to player for the team's offense, Wallace has a knack for being able to win in that fashion. Developing an unnoticeable tactic of giving a slight nudge to matchups, he’s been able to garner small glimpses of separation from defenders that are running hip-to-hip with him moments prior to the ball's arrival. A go-up-and-get-it type of perimeter threat, he doesn’t wait for the ball to reach his destination.   

Big-Play Ability: Proven to be a consistent big-play threat, Wallace was the break-glass-in-case-of-emergency player for the team's offense when it struggled to find its rhythm. He’s had plenty of explosive plays down the field that jump-started the team's offense to shift or create momentum. Considering Wallace’s strong points, he’s also been able to create lots of advantageous situations in the red zone with jump balls and quick shifty routes on the perimeter vs. man coverage. 

Prospect Comparison: Tyler Boyd (2016 NFL Draft, Cincinnati Bengals)

SCOUT GRADES

TDN Consensus: 78.50/100

Joe Marino: 78.50/100

Kyle Crabbs: 79.50/100

Jordan Reid: 79.00/100

Drae Harris: 77.00/100

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