Is N’Keal Harry the future for the Giants’ receiving corps?
The 2019 wide receiver class is a deep and talented one, and certainly more-so than it largely gets credit. The problem is that until the 2019 NFL Scouting Combine, there were no real “blue chip” prospects who stand out as obvious Top 10 picks.
There are, however, a bevy of talented prospects with the upside to start and be significant contributors in a variety of NFL offenses. That’s good news for a New York Giants team suddenly in dire need of young, affordable receiving talent for their offense.
Giants’ GM Dave Gettleman has repeatedly voiced his preference for “big men” playing football, while offensive architect Pat Shurmur’s scheme looks to get the ball to playmakers in space. Given his size and ability to create after the catch, the two could find common ground in Arizona State receiver N’Keal Harry.
- Prototypical size and frame for the NFL, uses his size to his advantage.
- Very strong lower body and great contact balance.
- Impressive ability to create after the catch.
- Dangerous with the ball in space or on screen passes.
- Capable route runner. Makes great use of double-moves.
- Good release against off coverage.
- Versatile. Plays the X, Z, and Slot positions.
- Inconsistent hands.
- Inefficient release against press coverage.
- Struggles to separate against tight coverage.
- Shows some lower-body stiffness
What They’re Saying
On the hoof, few prospects at any position in the entire class look better than Harry, who has packed on muscle and possesses the ideal size for a no. 1 wide receiver in the NFL. The instances where he utilizes that size and strength – to moss a corner at the catch point, to toss a defensive back as a blocker, to extend for a ball outside his frame despite tight coverage – are glorious and show the salivating traits that Harry could make a living on at the next level.
But his lack of speed, burst and overall athleticism are issues that need to be considered. He doesn’t always play like an alpha, and there is some limit to what he provides an offense due to his inability to create great separation from press man corners. NFL defensive backs will challenge him in very new ways, and Harry will have to consistently play hard and with better attention to detail than he always did in college. There is risk involved here, and limitations even at his peak, but if Harry can impress at the Combine, he’ll have a lot of teams looking to draft him amongst the top wide receivers in the 2019 class.
– Jon Ledyard (The Draft Network – Scouting Report)
Does He Fit The Giants?
With the current void in the Giants’ receiving room and the lack of a true “X” receiver, N’Keal Harry presents an intriguing option. He has the size that Dave Gettleman covets in football players, while his ability after the catch is a great fit with Pat Shurmur’s scheme.
Harry was primarily used on short underneath passes or wide receiver screens, and he can be deadly with the ball in his hands. Like many of the running backs this year, Harry has tremendous balance through contact, which combined with his powerful lower body, lets him disregard arm tackles and keep running. Interestingly, he doesn’t profile as a player who would be especially “shifty” after the catch, showing stiffness in his hips and ankles, but he is able to stick a leg in the ground and cut explosively — if not smoothly. Harry shows strong hands to hold on to the ball in contested catch situations, but he also has occasions where he fights the ball or suffers concentration drops.
All told, N’Keal Harry isn’t a perfect receiver and has issues to work on, most notably his releases against press coverage and consistency catching the ball. However, his combination of traits could make him appealing to both the Giants’ general manager and head coach. If he is on the board in the second round, the Giants might be hard-pressed to pass on him.