The clock is ticking as we inch closer to the 2014 NFL Draft. The San Francisco 49ers hold the 30th pick and will be looking to make a move towards their sixth Super Bowl. We will take a look at another first day draft possibility for the 49ers today. This time it is Florida State wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin.
Benjamin brings uncommon size to the position. He is 6-5 240 pounds. There are few receivers in this draft that rival his red zone ability. He scored 15 touchdowns last year capped off by his game winning touchdown in the National Championship game. Benjamin may not be able to break the starting lineup right away but he would immediately help a team improve it’s red zone efficiency. He is able to use his big body to create separation on various in breaking routes. Benjamin will be a force from the slot position especially on slants and post routes.
“I take opportunities and run with it. I am aggressive. I am going to be dominant. I will come off on blocking plays and try to put DBs on their back. Teams will get a guy that is going to work. My biggest thing is that I am willing to do whatever I have to do to make my team better.”
Benjamin is not a quick twitch athlete. He takes long strides and has build up speed. If he is able to get going he will separate from defensive backs. An underrated part of his game is his ability to go down and dig up low throws. Usually 6-5 receivers have a large radius above the shoulders, Benjamin gives that and more. He has the ability to make contested catches and is not afraid to go across the middle. His size makes him a physical player by nature. He doesn’t go down easily.
How will he help the 49ers? Benjamin will instantly upgrade the 49ers red zone efficiency. He is the kind of player that Kaepernick can throw the ball up to and let him box out the defensive back to make the catch. His size alone will draw a lot of attention in the red zone very similar to how teams defend Calvin Johnson. He is also an option on vertical throws and that is something that’s an option Kaepernick likes to take advantage of.
NFL Comparison: Brandon Marshall. Benjamin and Marshall are both very imposing as far as size is concerned. They can high point the ball and make plays against man coverage. They are open even when they are covered. Their catch radius gives quarterbacks a large area to through the ball to and allows them to do so with confidence. The major similarity is their ability to do so much damage in the vertical passing game. Neither of these guys are burners but they can use their size to get positioning on back shoulder throws.
6-5 240 pounds
34 7/8 inch arms
10 1/4 inch hands
4.61 40 yd dash
4.39 20 yd shuttle
32.5 inch vertical
9-11 broad jump
12 reps bench press
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