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2015 NFL DRAFT
player photo

Jarius Wright

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

A four-year starter, Wright was a four-star receiver recruit out of high school, choosing in-state Arkansas over Florida, Oklahoma and Mississippi. He contributed as a true freshman in 2008 (seven starts), recording 19 catches for 348 yards (18.3-yard average) and two touchdowns. Wright started all but one game in 2009 as a sophomore, finishing second on the team with 41 receptions for 681 yards (16.6) and five scores.

He started all 13 games in 2010 as a junior, recording 42 catches for 788 yards (18.8) and five touchdowns. Wright had his best season in 2011 as a senior (12 starts), finishing with a team-best 66 catches for an SEC-best 1,117 yards (16.9) and 12 scores, earning first-team All-SEC honors.

Wright had the most productive career for a receiver in Arkansas history, leaving with numerous receiving records, including receiving yards in a single game (vs. Texas A&M), which he achieved in one half. His lack of size and measureables are a red flag, but he was the best all-around receiver at a stacked position for the Razorbacks and was the quarterback's favorite target.

Wright doesn't look like much, but is instinctive with a great feel for the position and has very reliable hands, among the best in this year's class -- a Eddie Royal/Antonio Brown type of player who is best in the slot where he can manipulate the middle of the field, be effective at all levels and find ways to get open.

Analysis

Strengths: Has very good initial burst to beat coverage at the line of scrimmage with the quick-twitch moves to redirect in any direction and create separation. Has a fluid body with very good flexibility to twist and adjust his frame mid-air to make tough catches. Balanced, savvy route runner with top field awareness, setting up and selling routes beautifully. Knows how to get open and recognizes soft spots in coverage, sitting down in space and finding ways to get open in the middle of the field. Has explosive footwork to plant-and-go with vision to elude defenders after the catch. Competes for every pass with reliable hands to make catches away from his frame and great hand/eye coordination to routinely come down with the reception -- Mr. Reliable. Does most of his damage on underneath routes, but makes plays at all levels of the field with a natural feel for coverage and tracks the ball very well downfield. Quick to accelerate and reach top-end speed with a sneaky second gear to get behind defenses. Plays with a scrappy attitude and fearless toughness over the middle to hold onto the ball after big hits -- very confident in his abilities. Was extremely productive in college, leading the SEC in several receiving categories last season, and leaves with several game, single season and career school records, including catches (168) and receiving yards (2,934).

Weaknesses: Lacks ideal size and strength and is a smallish target with a lean, frail-looking frame -- marginal bulk with little growth potential. Can be overmatched at the line of scrimmage when physical defenders get their hands on him and can be pushed around on the perimeter -- struggles in press coverage and was knocked on his back more than a few times. Possesses smaller hands (81/2") and needs to look passes into his hands more consistently -- gets excited about running after the catch and needs to secure the pass cleanly before taking off. Gets himself in trouble with body catches. Has limited experience on special teams with only 8 punt returns and an average of 5.9 yards in college. Has some durability concerns after missing time in 2011 with a knee strain.

NFL Comparison: Eddie Royal, Denver Broncos

--By Dane Brugler

2011 Season

Wright leads the SEC with 93.5 receiving yards per game, 5.7 receptions per game and 11 receiving touchdowns. He ranks 12th nationally in receiving touchdowns. Wright has set the UA single-season record with 63 receptions and 1,029 receiving yards during the 2011 season and has tied the Arkansas single-season record with 11 receiving touchdowns. Wright is also Arkansas' all-time career receptions leader with 165 catches in his collegiate career. Wright set a new Arkansas single-game record with 281 receiving yards in Arkansas' win against Texas A&M. He also tied the school single-game record with 13 receptions in the win over the Aggies.

2010 Season

He started all 13 games for the Razorbacks and finished the season with 788 receiving yards, the second-highest total on the team, and five touchdowns on 42 catches. His receptions and receiving yards were career highs, while his touchdown total tied his career high from 2009. He ranked fifth in the SEC with his 18.8 yards-per-reception average and eighth in the conference with his average of 60.6 receiving yards per game. His 23 receptions of at least 15 yards tied for fifth in the SEC, and his nine receptions of 25-plus yards tied for ninth. He ranked fifth in the NCAA with 542 receiving yards against ranked opponents. He busted out for a season-high 131 receiving yards on a career-high-tying six receptions vs. No. 1 Alabama. He also posted another 100-yard receiving game in Arkansas' 38-31 double-overtime victory at No. 22 Mississippi State. His 105 yards came on two catches and included an 89-yard touchdown reception that is the longest of his career and second-longest passing touchdown play in school history. The 89-yard reception also ranked as the second-longest passing play in the SEC and seventh-longest passing play in the NCAA in 2010. He tied his career high again with six catches for 87 yards and two touchdowns, the first two-touchdown game of his career, while also returning one punt for eight yards in UA's 49-14 win vs. Vanderbilt. In the Allstate Sugar Bowl vs. No. 6 Ohio State, Wright pulled in four passes for 70 yards and one touchdown and had four catches totaling 51 yards at No. 7 Auburn. He made four receptions for 68 yards in the Razorbacks' 31-23 victory vs. No. 6 LSU and also made four grabs for 88 yards in their 41-20 win at No. 18 South Carolina. He had three catches for 32 yards and one touchdown in Arkansas' 58-21 win vs. UTEP and recorded three catches for 72 yards in a 31-7 win vs. ULM. Wright collected 64 all-purpose yards in a 38-24 victory vs. Ole Miss with two receptions for 40 yards and one punt return for 24 yards. He had 38 all-purpose yards in UA's 24-17 victory vs. Texas A&M, catching three passes for 29 yards and rushed once for nine yards. He opened the season with one 15-yard grab in the Razorbacks' 44-3 win vs. Tennessee Tech.

2009 Season

He played in all 13 games with 12 starts. He came off the bench against Florida. He was second on the team with 41 receptions and 681 yards, third with five touchdowns and 52.4 yards per game, and fourth with 16.6 yards per catch. He was 12th in the SEC in receiving yards per game and 16th in receptions (3.15). His touchdowns tied for 10th. He was 11th with 16 receptions of 15 yards or more and seventh with eight for 25 yards or more. He earned first downs on 30 of 41 receptions, which tied for ninth in the league. Wright also had five tackles for the year. He was Arkansas' Outstanding Offensive Player in the Liberty Bowl win over East Carolina with four catches for 90 yards and a touchdown. He had six catches for 139 yards in the opener against Missouri State. He had four for 108 yards with a touchdown against Georgia. He also had TD receptions against Texas A&M, Troy and Mississippi State. He had three catches for 51 yards against Ole Miss, five for 67 against Troy, three for 34 against Mississippi State and four for 40 at LSU.

2008 Season

Wright made appearances in all 12 games and started seven (Western Illinois, Texas, Auburn, Ole Miss, Tulsa, Mississippi State, LSU). He had 19 catches for 348 yards and two touchdowns. His highs came in the win over No. 19 Tulsa when he had five catches for 124 yards. His first touchdown of the year came at South Carolina on a career-long 70-yard reception in the second quarter. Wright also added a 46-yard touchdown reception in the final game of the season against LSU. Against the Tigers, he had three catches for 63 yards. Wright returned six punts for 15 yards and had three tackles.

High School

He racked up 58 receptions for 1,350 yards and 15 touchdowns as a senior for Coach Bo Hembree at Warren High School. He also carried the ball 55 times for 382 yards and eight touchdowns. He racked up 168 kickoff return yards and a touchdown on four kickoff returns, and 296 punt return yards and two touchdowns on seven punt returns. He earned a spot on the AP Super Team. He was a 2007 all-state selection and was selected to the All-Arkansas team by the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. Fellow coaches also named him as the outstanding back of his classification. As a junior, he totaled 51 catches, 1,086 receiving yards and 15 touchdowns. He also recorded three kickoff and two punt returns for scores. He was named to the all-state team. He was ranked the No. 30 player in the nation at his position and the No. 3 overall prospect in the state by Rivals. He was No. 218 in the Rivals 250 rankings. He was touted as the No. 3 overall prospect in the state by Hawgs Illustrated. He was rated the No. 39 receiver in the nation and the No. 3 overall prospect in the state by Scout. He was also recruited by Minnesota, Ole Miss, Oklahoma, Tennessee and Texas Tech.

 
Latest News
04/30/2012 - A closer look at the Vikings' picks: Round 4/118 - Jarius Wright, WR, 5-10, 182, Arkansas...A slot receiver who set school records for catches (168) and receptions (2,934). - The Sports Xchange

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