NFL Rookie Rankings: Week 2 | #11-20
11. Javon Kinlaw, IDL, San Francisco
Javon Kinlaw so far has been the same player we saw at South Carolina. He is an explosive athlete with great strength and elite length who makes jaw-dropping plays a few times a game. However, he’s also dealing with some consistency issues, occasionally having his pad level too high and getting blown off the ball. He was pivotal in stopping a fourth and one against the Jets as he opened up a massive hole for linebacker Fred Warner to shoot through and make the tackle.
Pre-draft ranking: Top 10, IDL1
12. Jerry Jeudy, WR, Denver Broncos
Jerry Jeudy is already one of the top route runners in the NFL, but most expected that would be the case when Denver selected him in the middle of the first round from Alabama. Jeudy has produced two straight games of 55 or more receiving yards and has been a weapon after the catch. With the upsetting news that Courtland Sutton will miss the season, can Jeudy step up and be the go-to target in Denver’s passing attack?
Pre-draft ranking: Top 15, WR2
13. Henry Ruggs III, WR, Las Vegas Raiders
Henry Ruggs III only registered one reception for four yards in Week 2, so it’s hard to put him over a player like Jeudy, who has double his receiving yards. However, there is a case that Ruggs has been a more impactful player for his team. He was a major factor in Las Vegas’ win over New Orleans in Week 2, as his ability as a threat down the field opened up the field for tight end Darren Waller and running back Josh Jacobs. Ruggs will likely never be a consistent producer on a week to week basis, but the paranoia he causes in opposing secondaries makes his selection at twelfth overall completely worth it.
Pre-draft ranking: Top 25, WR3
14. Jonah Jackson, G, Detroit Lions
One of my favorite players pre-draft, Jonah Jackson has done exactly what I expected he would early in his career. Jackson consistently plays quality football. A bully in the run game, and a wall in the pass game, the Lions stole Jackson with the 75th overall pick. He may not have the physical ceiling to ever be a top-five guard in football, but he has the motor and play-strength to be a model of consistency for Detroit.
Pre-draft ranking: Top 50, iOL5
15. Jordan Fuller, S, Las Angeles Rams
If in April, you had told me that Jordan Fuller was one of the 15 best rookies through the first two weeks of the NFL season, I would’ve laughed in your face. Yet here we are. Fuller put everyone on notice when he made a massive fourth-down tackle on Lamb, fellow rookie, and he’s been superbly productive since. He’s played 99% of the Rams defensive snaps this season, and he’s registered 17 tackles in two games. Ohio State continues to produce quality NFL defensive backs.
Pre-draft ranking: Top 250, S15
16. James Robinson, RB, Jacksonville Jaguars
Undrafted James Robinson is currently the NFL’s eighth leading rusher with 164 rushing yards and a strong 5.1 yards per carry. Robinson has looked explosive to this point in his career, despite testing as an underwhelming athlete in the pre-draft process. The Illinois State product has done a great job taking over the job in Jacksonville and should continue to be called upon throughout the season.
Pre-draft ranking: Unranked
17. Laviska Shenault, WR, Jacksonville Jaguars
Laviska Shenault’s talent was never in question leading up to the draft. When he was healthy, it was obvious he was the most gifted player on the field. Unfortunately, constant injuries derailed his collegiate career. On top of that, he was very underdeveloped as a route runner and lacked the nuance of an NFL receiver. Jacksonville has worked with this and has found ways to put the ball in his hands as both a receiver and running back. Shenault has recorded 119 total yards from scrimmage at a highly efficient 9.1 yards per touch.
Pre-draft ranking: Top 75, WR11
18. Justin Herbert, QB, Los Angeles Chargers
Justin Herbert didn’t find out he was starting his Week 2 match-up until a few seconds before kick-off, due to an insane story where the Chargers’ team doctor punctured starting QB Tyrod Taylor’s lung. How did Herbert face the adversity? By throwing for over 300 yards, accounting for two touchdowns, and nearly defeating the Kansas City Chiefs. Herbert is expected to start in Week 3, and if he performs as he did in Week 2, he’ll be climbing these rookie rankings.
Pre-draft ranking: Top 15, QB3
19. Van Jefferson, WR, Los Angeles Rams
Van Jefferson was widely considered one of the top route runners in the 2020 NFL Draft class, and that skill has easily translated to the NFL. In his debut, he only managed one catch for 31 yards, but it was a momentous reception. In his second game, he was utilized more often, netting four catches for 45 yards. In a loaded offense, it’s unclear how commonly Jefferson will be used, but expect him to be a consistently open option for Jared Goff.
Pre-draft ranking: Top 75, WR10
20. Chase Claypool, WR, Pittsburgh Steelers
Chase Claypool turned five targets into five receptions, 127 yards, and one touchdown. That’s good for 25.4 yards per reception and a passer rating of 158.3. Claypool has been a featured target in a loaded Steelers passing offense, but when he has been targeted he’s been phenomenal. If he continues to damage defenses with his targets, he’ll be featured more and more, but for now, he comes in at number 20 in my Week 2 rookie rankings.
Pre-draft ranking: Top 125, WR15