Is DeVonta Smith’s weight a problem at the NFL level?

After a fantastic 2020 college season in which he won the Heisman Trophy, questions have been raised around Alabama wide receiver DeVonta Smith’s height and weight heading into the 2021 NFL Draft. Smith opting not to weigh in at the Senior Bowl or the Alabama Pro Day has only furthered the conversation.

Pro Football Network Chief NFL Analyst Trey Wingo and Chief Draft Analyst and NFL Insider Tony Pauline discussed DeVonta Smith, his weight, and him as a player at the next level on the March 24 edition of Draft Insiders.

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How much does DeVonta Smith weigh?

With Devonta Smith refusing to step on the scales during the pre-draft process, his actual weight has remained unknown. However, in an interview ahead of his pro day, Smith revealed that he weighs 170 pounds. On the show, Wingo discussed the concerns surrounding DeVonta Smith’s weight.

“I think he weighs in around 170 pounds and the Ravens took a receiver in Hollywood Brown who weighed 166. So he would be the second lightest receiver ever taken in the draft since 1999. But we have seen players at that weight be very successful. Marvin Harrison was extremely slight. For years up until Mike Thomas got the record, he had the single-season record for the most grabs and of course has a gold jacket in Canton Ohio. T.Y. Hilton who has just re-signed and is staying with the Colts has also had success. So I don’t think the weight necessarily is going to dictate whether he is successful.”

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Additionally, Wingo explained how being “undersized” is not an issue if Smith can avoid taking big hits in the NFL.

“To your point, it is, how elusive can he be? But Alvin Kamara is a tiny human being, but I call him the cephalopod because he is able to squirm and worm his way around defenders. It feels like no one really gets a very good shot on him. So to me, the weight of DeVonta Smith isn’t as important as his ability to avoid those giant hits.”

Has DeVonta Smith created more controversy around his own height and weight?

The issue surrounding DeVonta Smith’s size has been magnified by his refusal to get measured. Pauline argued how these decisions are not helping the narrative around Smith.

“He’s not as fast as Henry Ruggs. He is not as creative or quick as Jerry Jeudy. But he does enough to create yards, and he is better in space. Had a phenomenal year. I spoke to people in the league, and I am seeing a lot of unforced errors from DeVonta Smith. It didn’t really have to come to this.

“The guy gives a great speech after winning the Heisman. Said how this is the model for kids who are told they are too small or too slow, you can do it. Then he goes to the Senior Bowl and won’t step on the scale. He didn’t need to do that. He didn’t even need to show up at the Senior Bowl.”

Pauline continued, “Doesn’t work out yesterday and then says in an interview after the workout, ‘I’m not going to participate in the Alabama Pro Day, I may do something on my own later on.’ Again, unnecessary, unforced errors. We know he is a tremendous receiver, and he projects well to the next level. Maybe not for every system, but he can be a quality NFL receiver.

“I just think there are a lot of unforced errors and a lot of things he shouldn’t be doing. I don’t know if it is going to hurt him in war rooms. But it is going to be a topic of conversation, and there are going to be questions asked.”

DeVonta Smith is an extremely talented player

Despite all the controversy surrounding his height and weight, DeVonta Smith is an extremely talented player. As Pauline mentioned on Draft Insiders, Smith’s skill set sees him compared favorably to long-time Colts receiver Marvin Harrison.

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“He plays more like Marvin Harrison than Hollywood Brown. Hollywood Brown needed space to work, and he basically beat you with speed. DeVonta Smith beats you with polished pass-catching skills. He is an outstanding route runner, knows how to separate, and he knows how to find the open spot in the defense.

“He is a guy who, although he is 170 pounds, will get open in a crowd and fight to come down with the ball. Smith does all those things very well. These questions about his size and everything else are basically his own doing. Unnecessary because he is such an outstanding receiver.”

Smith’s college numbers are extremely impressive

DeVonta Smith’s numbers at Alabama speak to the success he can have despite the question marks around his height and weight. After posting 1,256 receiving yards in a crowded wide receiver group in 2019, Smith exploded as a senior. In 2020, Smith amassed 1,856 receiving yards and 23 touchdowns. All told, he racked up 3,965 yards and 46 touchdowns across 235 receptions in his collegiate career.

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Smith concluded his time at Alabama on a high note in the College Football Playoff National Championship against Ohio State. Smith registered 215 receiving yards and 3 touchdowns in the title game. He did most of his damage in the first half, giving Alabama a comfortable 35-17 lead heading into halftime.

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