#1 WR USC’s Robert Woods: This Trojan is Different than the Other Trojans Before Him

Posted: February 23, 2013 in WRs 2013 Draft
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Taken by James Santelli, Neon Tommy. September...

Taken by James Santelli, Neon Tommy. September 24, 2011. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

USC has been one of the most explosive offenses over the last three seasons, not a surprise when you have a QB as good as Matt Barkley and a WR as lethal and flashy as Robert Woods.

Many don’t have Robert Woods as the #1 WR, instead they have Keenan Allen of CAL or Coradelle Patterson of TENN, they will be mentioned in later posts, but neither can break man coverage like Woods. Of all the problems USC has had since the Pete Carroll era, you can’t blame the offense; you can blame Lane Kiffin for being outcoached against other coaches in the Pac-12 and in the bowl game at Georgia Tech.

At 6’1 190lbs, he’s a little light for the NFL, but I care very little about that. In today’s NFL all you need to do is get five yards and a defense can’t touch you. Woods is the all-time leader in receptions at USC with 252. Those big numbers came while playing with Marquise Lee and Damian Williams (2010) and remember that this the University of Southern California we’re talking about, Dwayne Jarrett, Keyshawn Johnson, Johnnie Morton, and Lynn Swann are notable alumni of USC.

As a freshman in 2010 he caught 65 passes for 792 yards with 6TDs, quite impressive, and also showing that the 2010 recruiting class was really deep with stars. He not only catches passes. He runs jet sweeps, reverses, and returns kicks. These are skills I think teams in the NFL can take advantage of. As a freshman he was catching the ball with corners, safeties and LBs draped on him. This guy is a red zone threat at 6’1” that is impressive enough let alone the athleticism he possesses.

Many big time freshmen suffer a sophomore slump but Woods did the polar opposite, not only did he solidify himself as a star at USC; he became one of the best WRs in all of NCAAF. He tallied 111 catches for 1292 yards and 15TDs, which was in 12 games. Remember they couldn’t play a bowl game due to NCAA sanctions from the Reggie Bush allegations.

As a junior in 2012 there were high expectations for him, the offense and team being ranked #1. They may have not have been worthy of the #1 ranking as a team but Woods did not disappoint he had 76 receptions for 896 yards and 11TDs. It’s a drop-off but considering QB Matt Barkley’s injury that prevented him from playing the final two and a half games (UCLA (Barr’s hit causing injury), UND, GT) that’s the difference of 1,000-1,100 from 700-900 yards for a season. Sharing the spotlight with Marquise Lee the star sophomore also contributed to that.

Overall his strengths are obvious as you look into the film is that he excels in man to man coverage, he’s always catching balls in stride, he will run in the 4.4’s so the speed is there, and also is said to have a great work ethic. But why is nobody grading this guy like they did for Justin Blackmon and Michael Crabtree, because of “injury concerns”. But the one strength I notice is that he actually blocks, what a shocker this opens up a market for him that many others wouldn’t even consider.

#2 Robert Woods making a cut in a game at USC

#2 Robert Woods making a cut in a game at USC

I put asterisks to the injury concerns because I don’t see the worries, he started all 37 games he was eligible to play in his college career, but among other weaknesses include bulk and at 190lbs I feel there is a point there, he will need to bulk up in order to be an outside guy that can beat press coverage. He also had “concussion symptoms” but I’m not as sure as to what I should feel about that. Also his attitude of the reason he left USC, apparently it was cause of his targets, but I don’t feel like it’s a reason to stay away because I think Lane Kiffin is the WORST coach of a Power 6 conference in NCAAF that is not negotiable on my round-table.

My best team fits are the New England Patriots, Buffalo Bills, St. Louis Rams, and Seattle Seahawks.

First with the New England Patriots, they have a lot of cap room now that Brady has extended for less money, they still have a decision to make whether to sign WR Wes Welker. If it were me whether they do or don’t, they should draft Robert Woods with the 29th overall pick. In recent years they’ve become soft, and now Rob Gronkowski and Aaron Hernandez are their two best targets to me, that’s sad! Get Tom Brady a “REAL” WR to throw to, pair him with Lloyd or another draft pick (named later). Also giving Ryan Mallett or future quarterback a #1 target.

In the case of another AFC East team the Buffalo Bills, they have WR Stevie Johnson and RB CJ Spiller to look forward to. Now get another WR to pair with Johnson, and fix that wretched secondary and now you’re in business to compete with the new breed of the AFC Elite, Cincinnati, and Houston etc. Woods would be a definite plus and Head Coach Doug Marrone has seen him torch his team, I’d recommend pairing him with Nassib or Barkley (hint).

St. Louis is in a division that I feel is wide open, I’m not sold on SF and Seattle worries me with the lack of a great WR (later mentioned). Sam Bradford has talent, I feel there defense is good, they can attack those needs through free agency, but in that late 1st area they can use the Washington pick to take Woods, he’s perfect to pair with Brian Quick and UFA Danny Amendola. Now Bradford can maybe have a chance to excel like the Heisman winner in ’08 was always thought to do.

Seattle is the one can make them a true Super Bowl threat for years to come. They need to replace Sidney Rice, he’s soft. On another note Russell Wilson needs a true #1 WR. Robert Woods was recruited by Carroll and I know Pete Carroll of all people will take the chance to get a hard-working guy who will block for Marshawn Lynch down the field. Now Russell Wilson can form with him what Aaron Rodgers has in Jordy Nelson and Greg Jennings, Tom Brady and Wes Welker, Eli Manning and Victor Cruz etc.

I believe him to be the #1 WR in this class, based on not only skill but potential. He’s not raw like Coradelle Patterson and has speed that Keenan Allen doesn’t appear to have. He did play with a great QB which is a benefit to me but some may find it as a disadvantage, after all how many USC WRs have produced in the NFL since Keyshawn Johnson… You get my point. But he’s different and I feel he has ability no one in this class and last years class don’t have.

My comparison for him is Anquan Boldin and Dez Bryant. He has the blocking and 1on1 skills those guys have, but my reason is because he’s not afraid to catch the ball anywhere on the field. I believe he will be a starting receiver for the team that drafts him at the start of the 2013 regular season, he’s that committed.  

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