Rakim Jarrett, WR, Maryland | NFL Draft Scouting Report

Once a favorite to crack the early rounds in the 2023 NFL Draft, does Maryland WR Rakim Jarrett still have a scouting report worthy of top-100 consideration?

As recently as last summer, Maryland WR Rakim Jarrett was a regular inclusion in multi-round mock drafts, projected to crack the early rounds of the 2023 NFL Draft. After declaring as a true junior, where does his projection settle in now?

Rakim Jarrett NFL Draft Profile

  • Position: Wide receiver
  • School: Maryland
  • Current Year: Junior
  • Height/Weight: 6’0″, 190 pounds
  • Length: TBD
  • Wingspan: TBD
  • Hand: TBD

The Jarrett hype train started chugging along its tracks as early as high school when he was a five-star recruit from St. John’s High School in Washington, D.C. Jarrett came out of high school with already-established density at 6’0″, 190 pounds, and he had offers from several premier programs, including Alabama and Georgia.

For Jarrett, however, the opportunity to play football close to home, for an established coach in Mike Locksley, presented the most appeal. He committed to Maryland and made an immediate impact in a short four-game span as a true freshman, logging 17 catches for 252 yards and two touchdowns.

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A five-catch, 144-yard, two-touchdown performance in 2020 put Jarrett’s star potential on full display. With him wearing No. 1 as a hometown prospect at a school that produced Stefon Diggs and DJ Moore, the hype was impossible to stop after that.

Jarrett went on to have a productive 2021 season, catching 62 passes for 829 yards and five scores. But in 2022, injuries and increased rotational depth would limit him to 40 catches for 471 yards and three touchdowns. Now, after such a hot start, Jarrett’s stock is a bit cloudy — but he still presents intrigue as a prospect in the 2023 NFL Draft.

Rakim Jarrett Scouting Report

Strengths

  • Flashes great initial explosiveness out of his stance, and can get upfield fairly quickly.
  • With explosiveness, can surge to the boundary and get outside blocks on screens.
  • Has great long-strider speed in space, and can threaten defenses vertically.
  • Has the twitch to snap his feet and make sudden cuts upfield after stretching outside.
  • Tracks the ball well over his shoulder when he has separation downfield.
  • Has flashed the ability to extend and secure deep passes with hand-eye coordination.
  • Has shown he can square up DBs at stems and use his lateral agility to displace.
  • Can suddenly bend at stems and sustain acceleration through double-moves.
  • Has above-average contact balance for his size, and can churn through arm tackles.
  • At the very least, a willing blocker who flashes the ability to drive and finish.

Areas for Improvement

  • Has a slight frame with average density and a middling catch radius.
  • Can be somewhat bow-legged entering stems, limiting degree of displacement.
  • Despite flashes of energetic movement, lacks elite foot speed and twitch.
  • Pacing and plant-and-drive efficiency can be very inconsistent as a route runner.
  • With slot experience and stacked releases, has fairly little experience against press.
  • Can’t always naturally retract his strides and use variations at stems to separate.
  • Can be prone to body catches and focus drops over the middle of the field.
  • Doesn’t have the play strength to consistently work through contact at the catch.
  • Longer defensive backs can envelop him out of stems and minimize separation.
  • Size can impede ability to sustain blocks, as can tendency to stall feet into contact.

Maryland WR Rakim Jarrett Current Draft Projection

Jarrett grades out as a mid-to-late Day 3 prospect in the 2023 NFL Draft, although strong testing numbers could push him into the earlier Day 3 range. He was an early favorite in the 2023 NFL Draft WR class, and he has the burst and speed to rise. But his profile still lacks completion beyond those traits.

Jarrett’s top selling point is his ability as a vertical threat. When he has room to open his strides, he explodes into space and has the speed to stress defenders in the deep third and stretch the field horizontally. He’s also shown he can manipulate space and bend at stems to maximize that vertical ability, and convert with steady ball tracking.

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Unfortunately, Jarrett’s profile lacks the refinement and overall solidity that other speed receivers have in the 2023 NFL Draft. Jarrett has little experience against press and has room to be more varied, streamlined, and efficient at stems. He’s not consistent against tight coverage and can be prone to focus drops.

Jarrett, at the very least, has the testing athleticism and upside to develop, but without improved refinement as a separator and pass-catching consistency, he may be limited to a niche role in which he’s schemed RAC touches in the short range and used as a vertical presence. That’s a valuable rotational role, but it doesn’t demand high-end capital.

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