Route Running -Runs a pretty diverse tree. Understands how to use his feet to create space, will toe drag on speed cuts, etc. Sets up his breaks well with angular stems to create additional space. Deep cross, seam route, fade, out, stop pattern and curl were all present on his film.
Hands -Cradles the football softly away from the body. Has made several late adjustments to the ball and still managed to successfully secure the catch. High point skills and ability in contested situations to squeeze the ball are top shelf as well.
Versatility -No limits as a receiver. Can run past you, jump over you, run through you...nightmare to cover and defend as a receiver. Has been moved all over the offensive set: flexed wide, played from in-line and put in the backfield to be put in motion and have momentum at the snap.
Contested Catch Ability -Length is problematic for defenders when paired with his leaping ability and ball skills, doesn't leave a lot of room for defenders to play through him and attack the football. Instead forces defense to undercut all together or play through the body, where he braces for contact well.
Run After Catch Ability -Dynamic, explosive burst after the catch. He's run away from safeties and corners, plays in a different gear than other TEs. Second gear is paired with good foot quickness and ability to side-step a tackler. Does not, however, have a ton of creativity to force false steps by tacklers.
Power At POA -Is never going to be the kind of player to collapse and create a lot of space off the edge with his hand in the dirt. Has much more success as a space blocker on the second level or stepping down on seal blocks from the slot. Lacks lower half mass.
Competitive Toughness - Functional strength isn't especially high, particularly in head up situations. Athletic ability allows for constant adjustments and can at times work to out-leverage opponents. Pretty sturdy at the catch point and again on his route stems to run through contact.
Flexibility - One of the most free moving athletes I've seen in quite some time. Pretty special levels of body control and ability to disassociate his upper and lower halves to play with speed and still properly address the football at the catch point.
Balance -Looks like a wide receiver on his route stems and at the top of patterns, total control. Absorbs contact running down the field well and isn't going to be uprooted or bumped out of his trajectory. Will over-compensate and lean as a blocker vs. heavier defenders.
Football Intelligence -Polished, impressive player. Has understanding of angles and how to use them advantageously and create extra room prior to his breaks. Has natural sense for locating the football and doesn't compromise his routes or leverage over DBs by peeking too early.
BEST TRAIT - RAC Ability
WORST TRAIT - Power at POA
BEST FILM - Ohio State (2017)
WORST FILM - Penn State (2018)
RED FLAGS - None
Noah Fant has the physical skills and receiving chops to be the next big thing at the TE position in the NFL. The league has never been friendlier to flex targets and Fant runs like a receiver and leaps like a basketball pro. Fant is a nightmare in space and will excel in a vertical passing offense that can implement him in the middle of the field. With soft hands and elite athletic ability, Fant should be a volume target at the NFL level and will have an impact fairly early into his pro career.
Round Grade - Top-10 Overall