Josh Imatorbhebhe Has the Makings of a Project X-Receiver for the Chiefs

If the Kansas City Chiefs want to take a flier on a high-upside, big-bodied wide receiver, Illinois' Josh Imatorbhebhe makes a lot of sense.
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Josh Imatorbhebhe - WR, Illinois

By the numbers:

6'2", 220 pounds.

2020: 22 receptions for 297 yards and three touchdowns.

2019: 33 receptions for 634 yards and nine touchdowns.


Illinois' Josh Imatorbhebhe (ee-MAT-or-bay-bay) is one of the more intriguing athletes in this year's wide receiver class, boasting respectable top-end speed and great explosiveness at the line of scrimmage. His initial get-off is terrific, setting him up for the rest of his route. He's a big-bodied target who embraces physicality and handles contact well.

Imatorbhebhe's size combines with his instincts to form some of the best ball skills amongst his peers. He elevates well for 50-50 balls, high-points the football, maintains quality body control and has a wide catch radius. This makes him a legitimate threat in vertical passing situations where the ball is clearly being pushed downfield. 


While Imatorbhebhe has possession receiver traits, he's an underdeveloped route runner. His tree is limited and until he can consistently win underneath and in the intermediate passing game, he will be held back from reaching his ceiling. This can partially be contributed to a lack of experience and opportunity but at some point, the production will have to improve as well. 

Imatorbhebhe isn't a burner and doesn't have great breakaway speed, which puts a cap on his ability to generate additional yards after the catch (YAC). He'll never be much of a YAC threat and will offer most of his value at the catch point. In order to get clean and repeated releases, Imatorbhebhe needs to refine his footwork and technique. If he can do that and combine it with his early burst, he could become a lethal threat.

How Imatorbhebhe fits with the Chiefs:

With Sammy Watkins and Demarcus Robinson potentially departing via free agency, the Chiefs may be on the market for new talent at wide receiver. Imatorbhebhe is far from a direct replacement, although he would make for a great developmental piece if a starting X-receiver (X-WR) is found in the interim. Andy Reid's system caters to capable route runners, so Imatorbhebhe's early contributions would likely come on special teams. His size and ceiling are enough to keep him around while he matures.

Final Thoughts:

Imatorbhebhe is a receiver who has impressive ball-tracking skills and is certainly able to put himself in a good position to make tough grabs. He needs a lot of work in order to become a full-time X-WR but if the Chiefs are willing to slow-cook here, they could turn him into something special. Because of his explosive first few steps and knack for locating and coming down with the ball, Imatorbhebhe grades out as a fifth-round pick with plenty of room to grow.

Read More: Arrowhead Report's 100 Players in 100 Days: A Kansas City Chiefs Draft Guide.