Every year we as evaluators fall in love with a blazer—a talent whose burst and explosiveness overwhelm opposing secondaries. Meet Stanford’s Elijah Higgins.
At 240 pounds, Higgins isn’t what you’d label as your ordinary perimeter threat. Behind an NFL-ready frame that allows the Stanford offense to align him all over the offense, his versatility and impact with the ball in his hands have introduced a player to keep a keen eye on working in tandem with quarterback Tanner McKee this fall.
.@StanfordFball staff told us WR Elijah Higgins hit 21.5 mph GPS on this 56-yard TD last year. Only offensive players faster than that at last year’s @seniorbowl were third-round WRs Danny Gray (22.0) & Velus Jones (21.7). Stupid speed considering @ehigggz is around 240 lbs. 🤯 pic.twitter.com/ml4d6F8vb7
— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) July 27, 2022
Built like a modern-day tight end, it remains to be seen where Higgins will ultimately find his niche on Sundays. While he can run like a wideout, offering unique matchups over slower safeties and smaller linebackers, there remains a massive amount of room for him to grow in the ground game if he looks to earn a spot on a 53-man roster as a tight end convert—a route that a few scouts believe is his quickest path to snaps. A transition seen most recently from many of college football’s standout dual-threat quarterbacks, Higgins presents everything teams desire as a flex option on offense.
Projected as an ‘F’ at the next level, while we can sit here and play hypotheticals toward his draft ceiling as a tight end, his prowess as a physically overpowering ‘X’ in the Cardinal offense has got us to this point in the first place. He can flat-out play on the outside, and while most of the attention this fall will be centered around McKee—a potential tier-one prospect—Higgins slots in as one of the country’s most intriguing upperclassmen.
While it’s nice to see him push vertical and outrun Pac-12 defenders, he excels in doing the dirty work over the intermediate areas of the offense. While it seems like common knowledge at his height and weight to understand the optics of winning in a phone booth, Higgins’ innate ability to not only seal linebackers on his hip but to haul in a catch, only to stick his foot in the ground and quickly work up to his elite speed is a skill set unmatched by many in the nation. It’s translatable to Sundays.
For someone whose route tree will only continue to expand moving forward, the fluid-moving, densely-built Elijah Higgins should rise on draft boards as attention swarms to Stanford this fall.
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