Cornell Powell - WR, Clemson
By the numbers:
6'0", 204 pounds per Pro Day measurements.
2020: 53 receptions for 882 yards and seven touchdowns in 12 games played. Third-Team All-ACC selection.
Clemson's Cornell Powell brings NFL-ready size and strength to the next level. His frame could play well either out wide or in the slot and his physicality will help him a lot as a professional. Powell has reliable hands and good body control throughout the process, able to secure the ball at the catch point and come down with it consistently.
Smooth is a good way to describe Powell as an athlete. His speed nor burst are elite, yet he remains a legitimate threat to pick up yards after the catch. He knows where he is at all times and chugs along at the same above-average pace throughout his rep. Powell has a definite floor as an impact player in the NFL due to his awareness and willingness to work hard both before and after the catch.
Inconsistency is present with Powell. He didn't manage to break out until his fifth season with the Tigers and will be 24 years old in October. His route running varies from snap to snap, as he alternates between looking like a seasoned veteran and a first-year wideout still learning how to use head fakes. In order to reach his ceiling, Powell needs to improve on the little things.
Speaking of upside, Powell's is a question mark. He's a late bloomer with a solid athletic profile, although he doesn't have a go-to building block. His size is good and his toughness is a plus trait, but he doesn't have blazing speed nor developed route-running chops. For a player who took so long to make his mark as a collegiate receiver, it would have been nice to see more polish or hope for a brighter future.
How Powell fits with the Chiefs:
The Chiefs re-signed Demarcus Robinson to another one-year contract, so the team's depth at the wide receiver position isn't as bleak as it once appeared. With that said, the team still needs a No. 2 wideout — ideally in the early rounds. Powell doesn't fit that profile, although he has the size to potentially play an "X" role down the road. At the very least, he fits in a Chiefs system that desperately needs length, physicality and ball skills.
Powell exploded onto the scene once given a better opportunity in 2020. His frame and willingness to work for positioning project well to the NFL, although he needs to become more detail-oriented in order to make a more significant impact. He has the makings of a reliable receiving option for years to come without a star-level ceiling. Powell grades out as a fourth-round prospect worthy of a pick by the Chiefs as a solid addition to the receiver room.