WR Odell Beckham, Jr. could be the Eagles best choice at pick 22. He is a good fit for Chip Kelly’s offense and a very gifted, athletic prospect. He would also be good value in that range. I’d love for the Eagles to find some way to get Sammy Watkins from Clemson, but that’s just not happening. He should be a Top 5 pick and the Eagles aren’t likely to sell out to move up for him. Beckham is more of a 20 to 30 guy in terms of value.
Beckham is 5-11, 198. That’s not huge, but it is a good, solid build. He has the kind of strength and physicality that Kelly wants from his WRs. Beckham is a good blocker on runs and screen passes. He will engage defenders and work to sustain blocks. He’ll occasionally catch a DB off guard and “ear-hole” him.
Beckham isn’t a player that goes down on first contact. He is deceptively strong. You don’t see a huge guy, but tacklers do have to work to get him to the ground. He’s able to handle contact off the line of scrimmage and downfield. Beckham will work the middle of the field as a route runner and after the catch. He’s not shy about contact.
Kelly needs WRs that have good RAC skills and Beckham certainly is gifted in that area. He is elusive and has good vision. He has an excellent burst and good speed. Beckham ran a 4.43 at the Combine. That speed shows up on game tape. He’s not a guy like DeSean that can just outrun every defender, but Beckham beats most guys. His burst allows him to create some initial separation and makes him dangerous any time the ball is in his hands.
Beckham has good hands. He plucks the ball naturally. You will see him make some circus catches from time to time. He’s able to adjust to errant passes, especially on short throws. He can go down for the ball or reach up high. Beckham is very good on slant passes. He can reach out and snag the ball on the move. He has outstanding body control, which is a highly underrated key to being a good receiver.
LSU runs somewhat of a pro style offense and you see that in Beckham’s game. He runs good routes. So many WRs run mostly bubble screens and go routes. Beckham runs the full route tree. He makes crisp cuts and moves fluidly down the field. He also moves around the field. You see him in the slot and out wide. You see him right and left, short side and wide side. Beckham is comfortable in multiple roles.
Beckham was used as a runner and PR/KOR. He is a weapon with the ball in his hands and LSU wanted to take advantage of that. He had a pair of PR scores in 2012 and averaged 26 yards per KOR in 2013.
Beckham started 9 games as a Freshman and was a full time starter in 2012 and 2013. He finished his career with 143 receptions. 2013 was his best year. Beckham was 59-1152-8. That was good for 19.5 yards per catch, which shows you his big play ability.
40 – 4.43
BP – 7 reps
VJ – 38.5 inches
BJ – 10’2′
3C – 6.69
SS – 3.94
You may wonder about the 7 reps. Beckham has long arms (32 3/4). Doing bench reps for a WR with long arms is tough. By comparison, Brandin Cooks is 5-10, 189. His arms are 30 3/4 and he did 16 reps.
Beckham would fit right in with the Eagles. He could play the slot a lot and let Mac and Cooper focus on playing outside. Beckham could help as a RS right away. His RAC skills would make him effective on screens. Kelly talked about the importance of being able to beat man coverage in a recent interview. Beckham is a good athlete, but also can use his route-running skills to get some separation from DBs.
In terms of a pro comparison, he might remind you of Victor Cruz, minus the awful salsa dancing of course.
Some highlights for your viewing pleasure.