Wright saw more playing time in 2009 as a sophomore with 11 starts, finishing with a team-best 66 catches for 740 yards (11.2) and 4 touchdowns, earning All-Big 12 Honorable Mention honors.
He again led the team in receiving in 2010 as a junior (11 starts), recording 78 receptions for 952 yards (12.2) and 7 scores, earning Second Team All-Big 12 honors.
Wright had his best season in 2011 as a senior with 12 starts, finishing second in the Big 12 with 108 catches for 1,663 yards (second in the NCAA) (15.4) and 14 touchdowns, earning First Team All-Big 12 and Second Team All-American honors. He finished his collegiate career with almost every school receiving record.
Wright was a do-everything weapon out of high school and was recruited as a QB, RB and CB before earning a starting WR job as a true freshman ~ also played on the Baylor basketball team in 2008.
He is a gifted, all-around athlete who explodes to full speed with the body fluidity and foot agility to burst in any direction ~ exceptionally quick footwork and gets upfield in a hurry.
Wright creates separation with his dynamic qualities and is the best deep threat in this draft ~ Baylor's go-to target for four years and the type of player where the game appears to slow down for him.
He lacks ideal size for the next level and isn't yet a polished WR, but he is a playmaker with the ball in his hands and makes things happen at all levels of the field ~ a first round lock and one of my favorite players in this draft class because of his natural skill to start and produce from day one as an X or Y receiver in the pros.
Release: An impressive athlete with very quick acceleration to reach his top speed quickly and stretch the field. Very good body control and smooth movements. Plays fast and explosive. Short and lacks an imposing frame. Smaller target and didn?t see a lot of press coverage in the Big 12.
Hands: A savvy, natural hands-catcher with reliable hands and very good focus. A natural plucker who snatches the ball out of the air and shows the concentration to make acrobatic catches look easy. Does a nice job locating and tracking deep passes and is a legitimate vertical threat. Will go up and attack the ball, catching the ball in stride and quickly getting downfield ~ looks to score every time he touches the ball. Has smallish hands and will have some drops.
Route Running: Has a knack for getting open and is a quarterbacks' best fiend ~ passers just need to toss the ball in his area and he'll come down with it. A versatile weapon, proving to be effective inside in the slot and outside on the perimeter. Makes plays at all levels of the field. Still improving as a route runner and needs to do a better job selling his path ~ needs to sell slants and in-cuts better.
After the Catch: Has elite balance tight-roping the sideline and in-and-out of his breaks, showing excellent start/stop ability and burst ~ slippery runner with elusive footwork. Has little-to-no wasted movements between the reception and burst upfield ~ dangerous after the catch with solid build and toughness to break tackles.
Has good body strength to squirm out of tackles with the coordination to maneuver his frame between defenders. Shifty and elusive in the open field with very good vision. Creative with the ball in his hands and shows impressive feel for where he is on the field and the defenders around him.
Blocking: Wright has good playing strength for his frame and takes pride in his blocking. Very physical and aggressive.
Intangibles: Fearless over the middle and does a lot of his damage between the hashmarks. Wants the ball more than anyone else on the field. Confident and tough, playing through several injuries over his career. There is a lot to love about his effort and drive ~ a top competitor who gives full effort on every snap.
A fiery leader who plays with football intensity and determination ~ type of player who will run through a wall for his team. Smart and shows elite feel and focus for the position. Has very good starting experience (42 starts), leading Baylor in receiving all four years of his college career.
A versatile weapon (former high school quarterback) with 2 career passing touchdowns, 2 rushing scores and experience as a returner on special teams.
Extremely productive over his college career, holding almost every school receiving record and finishing his time at Baylor with 302 catches, 4,004 yards (13.3), 30 receiving touchdowns and 19 career 100+ yd receiving performances ~ had at least two catches in every game Baylor played the past four years (50 games).
Has some durability concerns, battling through ankle, shoulder and knee injuries as a senior. Has received penalties in the past for excessive celebration and needs to keep his emotions under control. Played in a high-tempo, spread offense with the Heisman Trophy winner as his quarterback so his statistics might be inflated a tad.
NFL Comparison: Steve Smith, Carolina Panthers."
-- Dane Brugler
Possesses a "plus" second gear to his game, looks like a legit low 4.4 guy who tracks the football well over his outside shoulder. Isn't afraid to take a lick and holds onto the ball through contact.
Works a lot in the bubble screen game as well, plucks the ball naturally off his frame, has some wiggle and accelerates quickly once he gains a step. But, isn't as elusive as his frame suggests, seems to slow his feet in order to balance himself and is a little tight when asked to make cuts at full speed.
Is still developing as a route runner. Runs his routes at full speed and does have a burst out of his breaks when trying to separate, but isn't real sharp. Again, looks a little tight and tends to round off his breaks even on vertical routes.
Will drift into his post route down the field, gets a bit impatient stemming corners off the line and for the most part simply tries to run by defenders. Doesn't seem to possess the lateral wiggle/physicality to routinely beat press off the line in the NFL. Has some short area quickness, but looks content to run around press coverage.
To his credit does a nice job lowering his shoulder and absorbing contact once he gains a step. Exhibits impressive ball skills and coordination. Locates the throw quickly, possesses good range and plays big when plucking off his frame. Isn't afraid to go over the middle.
Impression: In the same mold as a number of Pittsburgh Steelers receivers (Mike Wallace, Emmanuel Sanders) and can be effective both inside and out making plays down the field at the next level."
Route Running: Wright runs crisp routes as he can get in and out of his breaks faster than most. He has experience in the slot and outside and looks equally effective at either. Hands down the top vertical route runner in this draft. Shows the savvy to stem back to the sidelines on the deep fade and vertical routes prior to the catch to shield defenders.
After the Catch: Wright is extremely dangerous with the ball in his hands. Despite not having great size he possesses the power to break tackles in the open field as well run right by defenders. He’s an explosive and sudden runner that gets to top speed very quickly. If not for his prowess in the vertical game he could make a living running underneath coverage and turning up field for extra yards.
Athleticism: Wright’s a sudden athlete that possesses track speed and balance. The former three sport star doesn’t have elite size but makes up for it with plus strength and arm length. He has the long speed to stretch defenses vertically and the agility to make things happen in the open field.
Bottom Line: Kendall Wright is rated as my second best receiver in this draft and not far off from Justin Blackmon. He draws favorable comparisons to Mike Wallace of the Pittsburgh Steelers. His ability to stretch the defense on vertical routes and catching instincts make him a special player. With the top of the draft loaded with big receivers with adequate speed, Wright could benefit as he’s by far the fastest of the bunch. Wright is more than just a vertical, stretch the defense guy as he has the tools to be a solid all around receiver in the league.
Draft Projection: While most see him as a mid to late first round pick, I have him in my top 10 for the 2012 NFL Draft."
Is very naturally athletic with a fluid stride and can flat-out fly, possessing speed to take the top off a defense.
Is quick-footed, loose-hipped and sudden with outstanding stop-and-go acceleration and short-area burst which makes him slippery and elusive in the open field.
Is unpolished, has some growing up to do and needs to get bigger and stronger but is an electric talent with upside and playmaking ability capable of stretching the field vertically and horizontally.
Also has traits to excel in the return game."
Wright's game is built on speed and quickness. If a corner is playing off coverage on Wright, he's shifty enough to get open working over the middle. Baylor likes to work Wright underneath, lulling the defense into underestimating his ability to get vertical.
After the jump, some preliminary thoughts on Wright. We'll have a full scouting report on Wright and many others after the season.
- The most obvious negative about Wright is his size (or lack thereof). Because he isn't the tallest, Wright can't give quarterbacks a big window to place the ball.
- Isn't the kind of wide receiver who can high point the ball consistently. Is much better at catching on the move.
- While Wright shows good body control to make catches away from his frame, he's not going to out-jump many cornerbacks.
- Is improving locating the ball over his shoulder. Griffin's ball placement advancements have really benefited Wright in this area.
- Gets vertical fairly well because of his excellent speed. Likes to use a quick deception move before working upfield past the defensive back.
- Is dangerous after the catch because of his agility. He can wiggle around and make tacklers move in the wrong direction. Wright is going to be dangerous in the return game at the next level.
- Is used at times on trick plays, throwing and running the ball. It will mean little to his draft stock, but will be an added dimension a team can utilize."
Not all that big, but has good speed and a 42-inch vertical leap; has good hands and runs decent routes, but is still more of an underneath possession receiver who doesn’t get deep too often;
Also isn’t all that dangerous with the ball in his hands; averaged 12.2 yards per catch on 78 total catches last fall."
Has the ability to turn the ten yard cross into a 50 yard touchdown, explosive play maker... Good body control, adjusts well to the ball when it's in the air and plays the boundaries well...
Can lineup outside or in the slot, and has experience taking handoffs... Completely blew up his senior year, had 108 catches for 1,663 yards and 14 touchdowns which were by far career highs...
Had catches of 40 or more yards in six games as a senior... Great leaping ability, can go up and high point the ball... Works the middle of the field extremely well, makes him a dangerous weapon out of the slot position... Has good hands, doesn't drop many balls... Can return punts.
Negatives -- Undersized receiver who lacks bulk, struggles as a run blocker... Benefitted by having one of the best quarterbacks in the country throwing to him, in a spread offense, so his numbers may be inflated a bit...
Receivers his size usually fall out of the first round... A bit raw as a route runner, has the quickness and lateral agility to be a great route runner, but isn't there yet... Didn't deal much with press coverage in the big 12, could be an issue when transitioning to the NFL, his small frame will make it easier for corners to jam him off his route.
He needs to continue working on the small details of his game, but has a great foundation to build upon. As a route runner, Wright needs to be more crisp and precise in and out of his breaks. When the ball comes his way, he finds it quickly and can snatch it out of the air without relying on securing it against his body.
Wright can get separation with his speed or create space down the field. Because of his size, he'll need to work on his ability to get off the line against press coverage, but that's not to say he doesn't like contact. In the open field, he'll occasionally take on defenders head-on when the opportunity presents itself.
At the next level, as long as he continues to progress as a route runner, Wright has some serious potential for teams that aren't afraid to utilize shorter receivers down the field."