Wide Receivers Drafted in the 2024 NFL Draft

Will this go down as a historically good WR class? We take a look at the wide receivers drafted in 2024, evaluating their upside in the process.

This is the fifth straight NFL Draft with at least four wide receivers selected in the first round, which is not a surprise given the direction of the NFL.

That said, this class is expected to challenge some of the best of all time, with a handful of alpha options at the top of the board and plenty of depth to back it up.

We are taking a look at the wide receivers drafted in 2024, evaluating their raw ability and how it plays on the team that invested in them.

Which Wide Receivers Were Drafted in the 2024 NFL Draft?

Marvin Harrison Jr., Ohio State | Arizona Cardinals

Round 1, Pick 4

With nearly 2,500 receiving yards and 28 TDs over the past two seasons, it’s clear that Marvin Harrison Jr. is much more than the DNA he shares with his Hall of Fame father. He routinely puts corners in a bind with his pace and decisiveness. He lacks elite speed, but his attention to detail in his routes more than compensates for it.

Drops cropped into his profile last season, more of a minor concern than a major one, given that we hadn’t seen that prior. His dad hauled in 64 passes for 836 yards and eight scores as a rookie with the Colts in 1996; Junior has a great shot to clear all of those numbers in his introductory season.

Three of the top four all-time receiving yardage seasons by a rookie receiver have come in the past four years, and while projecting Harrison for the 1,400+ yards that those stars (Puka Nacua, Ja’Marr Chase, and Justin Jefferson) produced, he’s ready to earn targets at a high rate from Day 1.

Kyler Murray gets a projectable WR1 as the Cardinals look to improve after consecutive four-win seasons.

Malik Nabers, LSU | New York Giants

Round 1, Pick 6

Malik Nabers ascended to stardom this past season (89-1569-14), proving plenty capable of winning at every level. He is an effortless athlete who excels at changing pace and catching the ball away from his body, two traits that are needed to thrive at a high level in the NFL.

MORE: 2024 NFL Draft Complete Results, Recap, Order, and All 257 Picks

Nabers will make an impact the second he steps onto the field, and with an increased understanding of route concepts, he stands to take this offense to an entirely different level.

The Giants are electing to bet further on Daniel Jones. With Saquon Barkley out of town, this pass game will need to find a groove early and often.

Rome Odunze, Washington | Chicago Bears

Round 1, Pick 9

Rome Odunze led the FBS with 1,640 receiving yards last season, flashing his playmaking abilities (17.8 yards per catch with 13 touchdowns). The combination of separation ability and high-point excellence projects well, especially when you factor in plus-strength.

At the collegiate level, Odunze was able to get away with some route-running errors because of his physical gifts, something he will have to clean up. In a perfect world, he improves as a blocker, but this kid is a game-changer right now and has the ability to be built around for years to come.

KEEP READING: Analysis and Grades for All 7 Rounds of the 2024 NFL Draft

In Chicago, however, he will not be asked to do it all. The Bears brought in Keenan Allen this offseason to pair with D.J. Moore, giving Odunze the ability to be eased into the pro game. Offensive expectations are going to be high in the NFC North as a whole and Chicago is certainly poised to be a part of that equation.

Brian Thomas Jr., LSU | Jacksonville Jaguars

Round 1, Pick 23

Brian Thomas Jr. thrived in his first high-usage season (68-1,177-17), showcasing a get-open-in-a-phonebooth wiggle that will play at the professional level. There is some polish needed here before he is considered a go-to option, but his combination of athleticism and length projects well.

He will need NFL reps to develop into the type of receiver that the “Big Three” in this class walk in as, but his ability to stretch the field is pro-ready, and that makes Thomas an impact player in Week 1.

The Jaguars moved on from Calvin Ridley this offseason, and while they have viable options on their roster, BTJ should have every chance to see the field consistently in rather short order in this Trevor Lawrence-led offense.

Xavier Worthy, Texas | Kansas City Chiefs

Round 1, Pick 28

The 40-yard dash record holder (4.21 seconds) carries a thin frame, but you can’t tackle what you can’t catch, right?

If Xavier Worthy is used in the correct way, he can not only make plays down the field, he can open up everything underneath for his teammates with defenses forced to respect the deep ball.

The range of outcomes is wide as receivers at this weight (165 pounds) that succeed are the exception, not the rule.

If Worthy can add some muscle without losing the top-end speed, he has a chance to reach his ceiling as a top target. Can he handle target volume in Year 1? Maybe not, but that doesn’t mean he can’t have a significant impact.

The Chiefs are fresh off of winning consecutive Super Bowls without a bonafide WR1.

They may have found one in the second round last season in Rashee Rice, but his status to open the season is in question due to off-the-field troubles this offseason.

It’s clear that this offense is modeling what the Miami Dolphins did in building a receiver core around speed, putting Worthy in a spot to get every chance to shine as a rookie.

Ricky Pearsall, Florida | San Francisco 49ers

Round 1, Pick 31

Non-elite athletic traits may dilute the ceiling, but Ricky Pearsall has the skills to be a valuable rotational presence. His best college football plays came as a result of his most marketable traits.

To be sure, Pearsall is a very nuanced separator with enough athleticism and fluidity to function at the NFL level.

But Pearsall makes his money with truly hyper-elite catching instincts and hands. Few receivers are better at the catch point than him when it comes to consistently adjusting for footballs, using late adjustments and patience to maintain control, and securing passes through the catch process with hands of glue.

Pearsall’s reliability at the catch point makes him an asset on money downs, and he also has a degree of usage versatility that allows him to be easily integrated on Day 1. He might be the best slot receiver in this draft and that gives him the ability to potentially carve out a niche in this hyper-efficient offense.

This pick was viewed by most as a reach, but the 49ers have an offensive plan and they clearly valued Pearsell’s skill set as an asset they couldn’t wait on.

Xavier Legette, South Carolina | Carolina Panthers

Round 1, Pick 32

Size-speed profiles like Xavier Legette’s simply don’t come around often. He ran a 4.39-second 40-yard dash at 220 pounds and also hit as fast as 22.3 MPH in-game during the 2023 season.

Not only is Legette’s top-end speed enthralling, but he reaches that speed almost instantly and can warp coverage and tackling angles as a result.

That size-speed profile alone is extremely appealing, but Legette’s appeal expands even beyond that combination. As a route runner, Legette has promising vertical pressing ability, blind spot IQ, bend through stems, and stopping capacity.

KEEP READING: 2024 NFL Draft Complete Results, Recap, Order, and All 257 Picks

Meanwhile, at the catch point, Legette is one of the most imposing receivers in the class with his quick reaction speed, 32″ arms and swarming catch radius, high-end contortion ability, adaptable tracking, and strong hands.

It’s clear that the Panthers are looking to give Bryce Young every opportunity to succeed, and adding a downfield option to compliment a pair of shallow target earners in Diontae Johnson and Adam Thielen does just that.

Can Young take a step forward? The pieces are in place — Legette should be given opportunities to stretch the field from the jump in his rookie season.

Wide Receivers Drafted on Day 2 or 3

8) Keon Coleman, Florida State
Round 2, Pick 33 | Buffalo Bills

9) Ladd McConkey, Georgia
Round 2, Pick 34 | Los Angeles Chargers

10) Ja’Lynn Polk, Washington
Round 2, Pick 37 | New England Patriots

11) Adonai Mitchell, Texas
Round 2, Pick 52 | Indianapolis Colts

12) Malachi Corley, Western Kentucky
Round 3, Pick 65 | New York Jets

13) Jermaine Burton, Alabama
Round 3, Pick 80 | Cincinnati Bengals

14) Roman Wilson, Michigan
Round 3, Pick 84 | Pittsburgh Steelers

15) Jalen McMillan, Washington
Round 3, Pick 92 | Tampa Bay Buccaneers

16) Luke McCaffrey, Rice
Round 3, Pick 100 | Washington Commanders

17) Troy Franklin, Oregon
Round 4, Pick 102 | Denver Broncos

18) Javon Baker, UCF
Round 4, Pick 110 | New England Patriots

19) Devontez Walker, North Carolina
Round 4, Pick 113 | Baltimore Ravens

20) Jacob Cowing, Arizona
Round 4, Pick 135 | San Francisco 49ers

21) Anthony Gould, Oregon State
Round 5, Pick 142 | Indianapolis Colts

22) Ainias Smith, Texas A&M
Round 5, Pick 152 | Philadelphia Eagles

23) Jamari Thrash, Louisville
Round 5, Pick 156 | Cleveland Browns

24) Bub Means, Pittsburgh
Round 5, Pick 170 | New Orleans Saints

25) Jha’Quan Jackson, Tulane
Round 6, Pick 182 | Tennessee Titans

26) Malik Washington, Virginia
Round 6, Pick 184 | Miami Dolphins

27) Johnny Wilson, Florida State
Round 6, Pick 185 | Philadelphia Eagles

28) Casey Washington, Illinois
Round 6, Pick 187 | Atlanta Falcons

29) Tejhaun Palmer, UAB
Round 6, Pick 191 | Arizona Cardinals

30) Jordan Whittington, Texas
Round 6, Pick 213 | Los Angeles Rams

31) Ryan Flournoy, Southeast Missouri State
Round 6, Pick 216 | Dallas Cowboys

32) Brenden Rice, USC
Round 7, Pick 225 | Los Angeles Chargers

33) Devaughn Vele, Utah
Round 7, Pick 235 | Denver Broncos

34) Tahj Washington, USC
Round 7, Pick 241 | Miami Dolphins

35) Cornelius Johnson, Michigan
Round 7, Pick 253 | Los Angeles Chargers

Other Position Groups in the 2024 NFL Draft

Here are links to the list of players in other position groups who were selected in the 2024 NFL Draft.

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