Miami Dolphins select DeVante Parker No. 14 in 2015 NFL draft
Most of the Miami Dolphins' Round 1 scenarios included the qualifier, "if the top three wide receivers are off the board." When Miami came on the clock, though, one of those WRs—Louisville's DeVante Parker—still needed a home. So, the Dolphins pounced, rounding out their revamped receiving corps with a potential superstar.
The 6'3" Parker is a complete nightmare for cornerbacks when the ball is in the air. He possesses an innate ability to find the football, plus the body control to box out DBs and make a catch. From the outset he ought to be Ryan Tannehill's go-to weapon in the red zone. Tannehill has to be thrilled with the development of this offseason, too. Parker joins Greg Jennings, Kenny Stills and 2014 breakout rookie Jarvis Landry in what should be a potent passing attack.
Strengths: Explosive in the air. Has the height and leaping ability to go get the football, with ample body control to maximize his catch radius. Shows a feel for the sideline, making him a reliable target on the back-shoulder fade or in the red zone. Fights through tackles after the catch, rarely going down on first contact. Will never be considered a burner, yet somehow finds an extra gear when he slips into space. Authoritative with his cuts. Can create space when there appears to be little there by making intelligent use of body positioning. Could be deadly in the NFL on double moves—sells his fakes and gets downfield. Plucks the ball out of the air, even over the middle of the field. Returned from his injury determined to make an emphatic impact.
Weaknesses: Figures to see plenty of aggressive, press coverage until he proves he can handle that physicality on a regular basis. At 6'3" and 209 pounds, is not always able to hold his route when faced with body contact. While not slow by any means, his deep game may be limited at the NFL level. CBs with quick footwork will be able to force him into contested-catch situations. It's rare, but he will allow the ball to work through his hands to his body. Lack of run-blocking prowess could limit the number of snaps he sees, especially on early downs. Durability concerns are minor, but they're there.
Player Comparison: Alshon Jeffery
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