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2015 NFL DRAFT
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Juron Criner

| | College: Arizona
 
Copyright NFLDraftScout.com, distributed by The Sports Xchange
Overview

For all of the talk surrounding Andrew Luck and Matt Barkley and their respective passing attacks, the combination of Nick Foles and Criner was as dangerous as there was in the Pac-10 over the past three seasons.

Criner flashed as a freshman, even starting three games, but really put his stamp on the program as a sophomore turning in nine of his 45 catches for 582 yards into scores. As impressive as that total was, Criner picked up his play in 2011, enjoying one of the best seasons ever by a Wildcat receiver. Criner earned First Team All Pac-10 accolades with 82 catches for 1,233 yards and 11 touchdowns. Proving his breakout junior campaign was no fluke, Criner posted similar numbers in 2011, registering 75 catches for 956 yards and another 11 scores as a senior.

Some of Criner's production is a result of Arizona's spread offense. Many of his grabs come off of quick slip screens, giving him the ball in space to rack up yards after the catch. While scouts can question if he'll be able to match his collegiate success in the NFL, what is clear is that Criner has the size, strength and hands the NFL is looking for. His final draft status might hinge on his time in the 40-yard dash and health.

Analysis

Release: Rarely challenged in press coverage due to scheme. Good build-up speed, but isn't explosive off the snap. Good lateral agility and strength to get into his routes.

Hands: Among his better traits. Possesses soft hands to pluck the ball outside of his frame. Good concentration to make the catch in traffic or when he feels a big hit coming. Tracks the ball well over his shoulder (Toledo) and demonstrates very good body control to adjust. Doesn't often enough use his size and vertical to his advantage and shows only average timing on jump balls, overall.

Route running: Typically lines up outside, but will be in the slot at times to use his physicality to move the chains. Not asked to run a variety of routes in this spread offense. Makes his hay using his size and physicality to gain an inside release on slants and crossers, as well as various screens. At least adequate build-up speed for the deep ball. Doesn't show a great deal of explosiveness out of his breaks.

After the catch: Good size, strength and physicality when running after the catch. Has deceptive speed, as he's a long-strider, but has only average balance and agility to elude. Good vision and will use his blockers effectively. Will lower his shoulder and attempt to run through arm-tackles.

Blocking: Good size and strength. Looks to help out his teammates, but is inconsistent in this area, overall. Gives a good initial shove, but too often doesn't stick with his assignment to complete the block.

Intangibles: Threw a scare into the Arizona program when he was hospitalized after undergoing neurological testing during the off-season. Though head coach Mike Stoops told the media that he expects his star senior to "be the same player -- or a better player -- than he was a year ago," scouts will certainly investigate the incident. Practiced as a punt returner in the spring of 2011 but never fielded a punt for the Wildcats as a senior.

2011 Season

Criner was an Honorable Mention All-Pac-12 selection in 2011 after catching 75 passes for 956 yards and 11 touchdowns in eleven games for the Wildcats. He ranked sixth in the conference with 86.91 receiving yards per game and was eighth in total receiving yards. He had five 100-yard receiving yard games on the year and three games in which he had multiple touchdowns. Criner is Arizona's career record holder with 32 receiving touchdowns and is number four all-time in career receptions (209) and receiving yards (2,859). He posted 11 career 100-yard receiving games and five games with ten or more catches.

2010 Season

May miss 2011 season with a serious medical condition. First-team All-Pac-10 and second-team SI.com/cbssports.com All-America honors in 2010 … 82 catches for 1,233 yards and 11 scores, one of best seasons in UA history … Five 100-yard game and three others at 95-plus … Tied school record (Mike Thomas 83-1088) with 11 TD grabs in '10 … Top 10 all-time on UA career receptions, yards and TDs, plus single-season in those categories … Scored in nine games in 2010 … Six career 100-yard games and three double-digit receptions … 85-yard TD catch at Eugene seventh-longest pass play in UA history … Coaches POW for Oregon and OSU games.

2009 Season

Second on club with 45 receptions for 582 yards and team-high nine scores in 2009 … The touchdowns tied for No. 5 on UA single-season receiving TD chart … Had huge game with 12 receptions for 152 yards against Stanford, although did not get in the end zone … That game tied him with many others for the second-most catches in single-game UA history … Had career-high three touchdown receptions against Oregon in near-winning effort … Six grabs for 71 yards and the game-winning touchdown at the Coliseum in Dec. 5 victory over No. 20 Southern California … Rushed three times for 39 yards against UCLA and three times for 19 yards against the Trojans … Seven carries for 62 yards in sweep action … Caught a pass in all but the WSU game in 2009 … A couple more TDs will put him in UA's all-time career top 10 for career scoring receptions … Career highs: 12-152 against Stanford `09, 3 TD against Oregon `09, 3-39 rushing against UCLA, 3-19 at USC `09.

2008 Season

In 2008 he started the first two games of the year and the California game … Played in all 13 games … Potentially UA's top big receiver for coming years … Season Highs: 4-45 receiving against Toledo … 1 touchdown catch at New Mexico in fourth quarter … 1 tackle against California and WSU … 28-yard catch at UNM … One of two Las Vegas recruits in the 2008 class along with running back Keola Antolin.

High School

Canyon Springs High School, Las Vegas, Nev., 2008 … Voted to the Las Vegas Sun All-Decade Team in early January 2010 for his prep accomplishments … Class 4A All-Sunrise Region first-team offense … Two-time all-state … PrepStar All-West … Big receiver with decent speed, Criner caught 58 passes for 1,631 yards and 25 touchdowns his senior year for coach Matt Jenkins … Catches and yardage was top in state … Team scoring leader with 172 points including 10 PATs … Had 36 catches for 788 yards his junior year on an 8-4 squad … Noted basketball player.

Personal

Academic major is family studies and human development … Recruited by former coach Michael Smith … Date of birth Dec. 12, 1989.

 
Latest News
04/30/2012 - Wide receiver Juran Criner, the second of two fifth-round picks, has heard the criticism about his top-end 40-yard dash speed but isn't overly concerned about the stop watch. "I would just say that there's a difference between playing on the field and having field speed rather than straight-line speed," Criner said. "I don't feel like I would have a problem." - The Sports Xchange

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