Raiders make Ruggs 1st WR off board at No. 12

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The Las Vegas Raiders selected wide receiver Henry Ruggs III out of Alabama in the first round of the 2020 NFL Draft, No. 12 overall.

In a somewhat surprising move, Ruggs becomes the first pass-catcher chosen in a historic position class, picked ahead of CeeDee Lamb and former Crimson Tide teammate Jerry Jeudy.

After Derek Carr's receiving corps struggled to produce in 2019, head coach Jon Gruden and general manager Mike Mayock publicly expressed interest in adding a dynamic weapon to their offense. Ruggs is that type of player, arguably offering more speed than any other draftee in 2020.

The talented deep threat instantly upgrades Vegas' receiver room, which also features Tyrell Williams, Hunter Renfrow, and Zay Jones.

Prospect Profile

School: Alabama
Height: 5-11
Weight: 188 lbs

Positives

  • One of the fastest receivers coming out of the draft in recent years
  • Elite overall athleticism
  • Explosive off the line of scrimmage and is able to immediately find space
  • Very strong hands - rarely drops the ball
  • Excellent release versus man coverage, especially while breaking inside
  • Quickness and speed to separate against any coverage
  • Consistently fools defensive backs with double moves
  • Excellent ball tracker
  • Often fools defenders on routes by changing speeds
  • Possesses the balance to break off tackles and the home run ability after the catch
  • Good foot speed to beat press coverage
  • Solid production despite being the third or fourth option in Alabama's offense

Negatives

  • Below-average size with a slim frame
  • Not very physical in his route or after the catch - tough cornerbacks knocked him around a bit
  • Won't use his hands or body to separate against man coverage
  • Not an extremely detailed route-runner

Bottom Line

Most of us know just how fast Ruggs is, but he's much more than just a speedy deep threat. The former Crimson Tide star can make plays all over the field and defeat any coverage. He's not the biggest or strongest receiver, but he's surprisingly adept on contested catches and in releasing against press coverage. Overall, Ruggs is a dynamic weapon that every NFL offense desires - he's a home run hitter after the catch and is explosive enough to challenge defenses vertically. He's a player who makes everyone around him better, and opponents must account for him on every single snap.

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Raiders make Ruggs 1st WR off board at No. 12
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