A two-time Second Team All-Pac-10 pick, Kearse enters his senior season without Locker, but potentially in position to enjoy greater success as defenses will now be focusing on stopping another pro prospect in junior running back Chris Polk rather than the Huskies' passing attack.
Kearse paid immediate dividends for the Huskies, playing in all 12 games as a true freshman and finishing second on the team with 20 catches for 301 yards and two scores. His totals leapt in 2009 as emerged as a starter, leading the team with 50 catches for 866 yards and eight touchdowns. He took yet another step as a junior, turning in one of the more statistically impressive seasons by any receiver in Washington history with 63 receptions for 1,006 receiving yards and 12 touchdowns. Among those scores were game-winners against Oregon State (overtime) and rival Washington State.
Kease has a legitimate NFL combination of size and speed, but has been plagued by drops and inconsistecy as a route-runner throughout his career. He has the physical talent to rate among the top senior receivers in the country, but will need to take yet another step to capture that status.
Release: Has the straight-line speed to challenge cornerbacks deep so is often met with zone or man-off looks, but struggled when challenged with physical press coverage last season (Nebraska). Has to improve the strength and quickness of his hands, as well as show better lateral agility and balance off the line of scrimmage to gain a free release. Too often ran around the jam, gaining freedom but only after eliminating whatever timing he had with the quarterback.
Hands: Flashes the ability to be a big-time receiver, but struggles with drops. Can extend and pluck outside of his frame, demonstrating the ability to make the highlight reel reception, but too often attempts to make a move on the defender before adequately securing the football, allowing passes into his chest and others than simply slip through his hands. Even worse, some of his drops came at critical moments last year (BYU, Arizona State). Competes well for the ball, timing his leap and high-pointing passes in jump ball situations. Can track the ball over either shoulder.
Route Running: Has enough vertical speed to challenge the defense, but may lack the quick feet and body control to create consistent separation on routes that require it. Settles into his breaks rather than exploding out of them. At his best where he can use his speed and size to creat openings (slants, crossers, verticals). Has the talent
After the Catch: Arguably his best trait. Boasts a legitimate NFL combination of size, strength and speed. Possesses a burst of acceleration and good straight-line speed to rack up yardage after the catch. Good vision and patience to set up and follow his blocks. Can elude defensive backs with his agility, while also flashing the physicality to break free from would-be tackles.
Blocking: Flashes physicality as a downfield blocker, but is inconsistent in this area, as well. Too often appears content with just sealing off the defender, rather than actively working the block. Has the build to improve significantly in this area if he made it more of a priority.
Intangibles: Perhaps as a reflection of Locker's inconsistencies, Kearse scored nine of his 12 touchdowns in three games -- including a school record four scores against Oregon State (three against Syracuse, two against Washington State). Was shut down by Nebraska in each of the two games they played. Caught only one pass for four yards in the Holiday Bowl..."
Doesn’t seem to really like contact, doesn’t use his hands well and seems content to try to run around the press. Re-routes himself at times, is slow to escape physical defenders and despite his skill set isn’t very effective cleanly getting into his routes. Does a good job eating up the cushion however vs. off, displays a powerful stride, an initial burst out of his stance and has the ability to shrug off defenders vertically and track the football.
Isn’t a real polished route runner at this stage, struggles to generate much of a burst on sharply breaking routes and has a tendency to chop his feet and gear down before changing directions. Looks too tight in the hips to ever routinely separate vs. NFL defenders in this area of the game.
Is better suited working vertical routes, is used a lot on the slot where he can create miss-matches. However, is inconsistent using his body to shield defenders. Gets caught looking for the safety too often and doesn’t routinely pluck the football way from his frame. Has the ability to do so, but looks content to let throws get into his frame and will put the ball on the ground.
Can be physical after the catch. Secures the ball quickly, snaps his head around and will break tackles after the completion. Doesn’t have a ton of wiggle to his game, but is physical, balanced and explosive. Can win battles for you on the outside vs. the run game, but doesn’t seem to have a real passion to be physical and dominate the way his body type would lead you to believe.
Impression: Looks like a guy who should be able to dominate at the college level. However, he seems a bit disinterested at times, isn’t as physical in any area of the game as his frame would indicate and isn’t a guy I would trust on the outside in the NFL to make plays for me."
Could make a living moving the chains short-to-intermediate given his efficiency of movement, dependable route running and awareness.
Lacks elite top-end speed and is not a sudden, explosive athlete but has solid traits across the board.
Could earn a spot as a No. 3 or 4 receiver if he runs well and becomes a more consistent catcher."
Has good size and decent straight-line speed; also a competitive receiver who will make the tough catch in traffic, but also drops too many easy ones; runs crisp routes and can find the soft spot in coverage;
Also a good runner after the catch; however, not very explosive and struggles to get separation against solid man coverage; had 63 catches in 2010 for just over 1,000 yards and 12 scores."