Jaxon Smith-Njigba NFL Draft
Jaxon Smith-Njigba

Jaxon Smith-Njigba

  • WR Ohio State
  • Junior
  • #13
  • 6'
  • 198lbs
  • Prospect
  • Big Ten

Prospect Summary

Jaxon Smith-Njigba NFL Draft Scouting Report

WR, Ohio State Buckeyes 

A five-star recruit, Jaxon Smith-Njigba set the Big Ten receiving record in 2021 with 1,606 yards. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to deliver another productive campaign in 2022 as he battled injuries throughout the entire season and was limited to just three games and caught a total of four passes. 

Smith-Njigba is an outstanding route-runner and separator where his deceptive footwork, body control, ability to read leverage, make sight adjustments, and run to open space made him consistently available for C.J. Stroud to work him the football in 2021. He’s an extremely intelligent player with exceptional spatial awareness. He does well to continue working in scramble situations and he’s always competing to get open. Smith-Njigba has exceptional hands, ball skills, and focus at the catch point. He is decisive after the catch with excellent field vision. Everything Smith-Njigba does on the field is smooth, focused, and technically refined. He’s found production and is a threat to work all levels of the field. He does well to vary his release package to win early in routes, which allows him to gain leverage and get open.

While Smith-Njigba is an outstanding route-runner and separator, he lacks top-end speed. He is reliant on technique because he isn’t simply going to win foot races to run away from coverage. That explosive top gear is missing from his skill set. Ohio State moves him around the formation and puts him in motion, but he has primarily functioned from the slot and enjoyed free releases. He has the footwork and body control to beat press coverage but hasn’t been challenged much in that regard, so developing and proving his ability to play out wide may remain a question.

Because he wasn’t available, 2022 was a lost year to evaluate Smith-Njigba’s development and questions were left unanswered. Smith-Njigba has the makings of a productive NFL starter but he isn’t striking when the iron is hot when it comes to his last year in college going into the NFL. 

Top Reasons to Buy In:

  • Route-running
  • Body control
  • Hands and ball skills 

Top Reasons For Concern:

  • Lack of explosiveness
  • Development needed to win on the outside
  • Only one season of college production

Size (NFL Combine):

Height: 6′ 1”

Weight: 196 lbs

Arm Length: 30 1/2”

Hand Size: 9”

Athletic Testing (NFL Combine):

40-yard Dash: TBD

Vertical Jump: 35”

Broad Jump: 10 5”

Short-Shuttle: 3.93s

Three-Cone: 6.57s

Bench Reps: TBD

Ideal Role: Slot receiver 

Scheme Fit: Spread, 11-personnel-heavy 

Prospect Comparison: Robert Woods (2013 NFL Draft) 

TDN Consensus Grade: 84.50/100 (Second-Round Value)

  • Marino Grade: 84.50/100

Written By: Joe Marino

Exposures: Penn State (2021), Nebraska (2021), Utah (2021), Michigan (2021), Notre Dame (2022)

Jaxon Smith-Njigba NFL Draft Scouting Report. Add him to your big board here.