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Purdue Football: Wide Receivers This Fall

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Will any newcomers make an impact?

NCAA Football: NCAA Football: Purdue at Iowa The Des Moines Register-USA TODAY Sports

The other day, I composed an article going over what the quarterback position may look like this fall. You guys seemed to like it, so I will go ahead and do one for each position group.

Today, I am going to look at wide receivers. This is an interesting group after the graduation of Anthony Mahoungou and Greg Phillips, we basically have one returnee with a lot of playing time - Jackson Anthrop.

For this, I am going to do 4 starters, just because we do use a lot of 4 wide receivers sets during games. We also see a lot of 3 wide receivers and 1 tight end sets - but listing 4 seems appropriate.

Let me preface by saying, this is a crowded room. We will have 16 on roster with 12 being on scholarship. That is A LOT of wide receivers. But, in Coach Brohms pass happy offense we need the options. But, lets go ahead and look at these groups.

Starters:

1 - Jackson Anthrop

2 - Isaac Zico

3 - Jared Sparks

4 - Rondale Moore

Like I said, this is a guessing game for me. With Jackson, I see him as our go to number one wide receiver. He has the best hands on the team and he is the most dependable. He isn’t slow either and can beat anyone over the top, but on the other hand he is not afraid to go across the middle and make catches. He is our number one.

This spring, Zico looked like a grown ass man. I think he out 15 pounds of muscle on, he looks huge. He is a home run threat on any play. His biggest issue last year was his consistency with his hands. The coaches have said he made huge strides this spring.

The former Quarterback, Sparks, gives us an interesting option at the outside receiver spot. He is 6’2”, 210 Pounds and fits that mold perfect. He had over 200 yards receiving last year while battling injuries. I think he becomes more consistent this year as he will be comfortable as a wide receiver. Expect a trick play with him this year.

The highly touted recruit, Rondale Moore, didn’t come to Purdue to sit on the sidelines. He could have done that at Alabama. He will play all over the field, kick returns, punt returns, slot receiver and probably out of the backfield. Coach Brohm will get him in open space and he will torch people - as a freshman.

Depth:

5 - Terry Wright

6 - Jarrett Burgess

7 - Benaiah Franklin

8 - Tyler Hamilton

This is a solid group of back ups. I almost had Wright as a starter, but he was too inconsistent for me last year. Burgess got on the field last year, he has deep ball ability, but is 6’3”, 220 Pounds. Franklin is another kid with size, he just has to figure it all out. I think he looked good at the Spring Practices. Hamilton is another slot receiver, he looks similar to Moore but he isn’t the human joy stick that Rondale is. These guys will have to be good, as Coach Brohm showed last year, he likes to rotate his wide receivers. Don’t be surprised if these guys all rotate in.

Deep-Depth:

9 - D.J. Edwards

10 - Keyron Catlett

Both redshirt freshman could be in rotation, but their youth and depth ahead of them make it an uphill battle. Edwards is smooth on his routes. Expect them both to be used heavily on special teams this fall.

Walk-Ons:

1 - Malcolm Dotson

2 - Noah Ellison

3 - Ryan James

A solid group of walk ons, that may make an impact some day. Maybe they will make a contribution on special teams. Dotson will for sure, as he was on them last year with his track speed.

Redshirts:

1 - Amad Anderson

2 - Jordan Bonner

3 - Kory Taylor

This is a great group of wide receivers to redshirt and keep round 5 years. Amad got here in January, but he is a little thin and needs to continue to put weight on. Bonner and Taylor are both big bodied receivers, Bonner is 6’3” and Taylor is 6’5” - but both have 3 guys ahead of them right now. I do believe all three of these guys play in their Purdue career, just not this fall.