Rambo displayed his best route-running in 2021 at Miami where he made good adjustments against zone coverage, varied his tempo, and showcased deception. He consistently attacked blind spots and snapped off his breaks. He’ll need to expand his route tree in the NFL but I am encouraged by his growth in 2021.
Charleston Rambo spent the first three seasons of his college career at Oklahoma where there were flashy moments but he was plagued by inconsistency and his role in the offense failed to grow as other players earned opportunities over him. Rambo transferred to Miami for the 2021 season and found the consistency needed to be taken seriously as an NFL prospect, hauling in 79 receptions for 1,172 yards and seven touchdowns. Those 79 receptions are the most ever in a single season in program history. From consistency catching the football to route-running, Rambo took major strides in 2021 and improved vastly from what he showcased at Oklahoma. Rambo is a good route-runner that can win down the field with strong ball tracking ability and an impressive second gear once he opens his stride. He’s a highly competitive player that despite a slender build and modest functional strength brings the fight as a blocker and battles when challenged with contact. He features a strong release package with good variance. When it comes to areas of concern for Rambo, it’s hard to forget about all the drops at Oklahoma and he’s not a natural hands-catcher. He only has modest functional strength and is more of a finesse player despite a strong competitive temperament. He will need to expand his route tree and become more accustomed to lining up in different spots for the offense and non-static alignments. And for a player that is likely a depth receiver at least to begin his career, he has a lot to prove as a special teams contributor. The growth Rambo displayed in 2021 makes him an interesting developmental option that appears to be an ascending talent.
Ideal Role: Developmental Y receiver
Scheme Fit: Spread
Written by Joe Marino
Games watched: Missouri State (2020), Kansas (2020), TCU (2020), Florida (2020), Michigan State (2020), Duke (2020), Virginia Tech (2020)
Best Game Studied: Michigan State (2021)
Worst Game Studied: TCU (2020)
Route Running: Rambo displayed his best route-running in 2021 at Miami where he made good adjustments against zone coverage, varied his tempo, and showcased deception. He consistently attacked blind spots and snapped off his breaks. He’ll need to expand his route tree in the NFL but I am encouraged by his growth in 2021.
Hands: Drops were a major issue for Rambo at Oklahoma across three seasons, but he cleaned things up in 2021. With that said, it’s apparent he’s still not a consistently natural hands-catcher and prefers to guide the football into his frame. There are also times where he struggles to get his hands aligned to properly greet the football, which leads to it slipping through his hands and often rattling around even if he does make the catch.
Separation: When Rambo gets the opportunity to open his stride, he has the ability to pull away from coverage and win down the field. He features a strong release package that helps him uncover quickly when necessary. In 2021, he showcased the ability to make good adjustments against zone coverage and win choice routes, which led to good separation.
Release Package: Rambo has a diverse release package and he knows how to clear press coverage with a variety of footwork, reducing his surface area, taking steep angles, and getting his hands involved. He does well to vary his releases and alter his pace. I do have concerns about his functional strength and slender build when addressing contact early in routes at the next level.
Run After Catch: Rambo has been flashy after the catch in college but I’d stop short of calling him electric or dynamic. His build-up speed and modest contact balance take away from his chances to create for himself. Also, his lack of natural ability to catch the ball with his hands slows him up when provided opportunities to stay up and work in space.
Ball Skills: Generally speaking, Rambo puts himself in good positions to catch the football with strong tracking skills. In 2021, his ability to win in traffic and through contact was far better than what his time at Oklahoma revealed. I do have some concerns about body positioning and functional strength at the next level.
Football IQ: While he isn’t a natural hands-catcher, Rambo is a smart player. I like his technique as a route-runner and how he adjusts on the fly. There is a need for him to diversify his route tree at the next level.
Versatility: Both at Oklahoma and Miami, Rambo primarily aligned as an outside receiver with occasional reps from the slot. In 2021 at Miami, he was almost exclusively a static receiver on the right side of the formation. He was almost exclusively a right side receiver in 2019-20 at Oklahoma. He has 16 career fielded kick returns, one punt return opportunity, and has modest special teams experience overall.
Competitive Toughness: One of my favorite components of Rambo’s game is his temperament as a blocker and he brings the fight. Rambo is competitive with the ball in his hands, as a route-runner, and at the catch point but needs to get stronger to maximize that effort. He competes, but he’s more of a finesse player.
Big Play Ability: Rambo’s ball-tracking ability and speed down the field once he opens his stride gives him a chance to be a down-the-field threat at the next level. He’s effective after the catch. He has modest production as both a runner and returner in college.
Prospect Comparison: John Hightower (2020 NFL Draft, Philadelphia Eagles)
TDN Consensus: 69.38/100 (Sixth Round Value)
Crabbs Grade: 70.00/100
Marino Grade: 70.50/100
Harris Grade: 68.00/100
Sanchez Grade: 69.00/100