The bad news. We lost All-American Wide Receiver to the Cleveland Browns a year early, but, he deserved to go pro. More bad news, losing Milton Wright due to grades. Some more bad news, Jackson Anthrop gone after half a decade at Purdue.
The good news: There is still plenty of talent at wide receiver in West Lafayette and AOC will make them all better.
Mershawn Rice. If he can stay healthy he will be in line for a heavy workload. I really like him on the outside, if healthy, he can replace whatever Milton Wright did the past couple of seasons.
Charlie Jones. He is a late addition, the 2021 B1G return man of the year is looking for more opportunities at Wide Receiver, in Brohm’s pass friendly offense, he may just get that. He will compete for some playing time, I could see him in the slot as well.
Preston Terrell & Elijah Canion will be battling for some playing time early on in their Purdue careers. Both are big bodied wide receivers that will go up and get the ball. Terrell is 6-3, 200 pounds and Canion, an Auburn transfer, is 6-4, 220 pounds.
The clear cut favorite here is obviously Tyrone Tracy. There have only been glowing reports about the Iowa Transfer. I think he will make a huge impact out of the slot, I am not saying totally Rondale like, but don’t be surprised if it happens.
T.J. Sheffield, it seems like he has been around for quite sometime now, whenever he touches the ball, good things happen. He and Tracy can be on the field at the same time and not lost a step.
Speaking of a step, Zion Steptoe enrolled early and turned heads, he could be in line for some playing time during his freshman season in West Lafayette. He is explosive.
I think the clear cut favorite to replace David Bell is Broc Thompson. Thompson dominated in the bowl game. He is recovering from knee surgery but he should be ready to go by the start of the season. He is locked in as my WR1.
His back-up could really be anyone. I think a lot of the wide receivers on the outside are able to play a variety of spots.
My personal favorite to back him up is Abdur-Rahmaan Yaseen. He is going into his third season at Purdue and the former 4 star is ready to burst onto the scene. On the roster, I think he is most similar to David Bell, similar size and speed, both very smooth route runners.
Then, if I had to pick one to be the WR3 at “Z” would be Collin Sullivan. He is a physical WR with solid ball skills. He had is first career catch in the bowl game.
Other Names to Know:
Don’t be surprised to see up to 9 wide receivers get plenty of playing time throughout the year. We are lucky to have so much depth at this position, if injuries are sustained we should be okay, as we saw in the Bowl Game.