As he ascends up draft boards faster than he’s left college football defenses trailing in his wake, Boston College wide receiver Zay Flowers is becoming one of the hottest properties in the 2023 NFL Draft. Where are some potential landing spots for Flowers, one of the nation’s most explosive pass catchers?
Zay Flowers Landing Spots Include the Chargers, Ravens, and Cowboys
Football is a sport of passion. Blood, sweat, tears, heart, and soul go into every down. As such, there’s a temptation to tilt towards the romantic, especially with an event such as the draft.
Is there a more romantic notion than Flowers landing with the New England Patriots after a college career spent bringing joy to the state of Massachusetts? The dynamic receiver heads to the NFL with the Boston College records book tucked safely in his back pocket, a pass catcher rarely seen on Chestnut Hill.
Then consider that the Patriots worked closely with Flowers at the Shrine Bowl, privy to his every electric move. Also consider that New England’s offense so desperately needs an injection of life, a spark, anything to make it feel alive — whether in the hands of Mac Jones or Bailey Zappe.
MORE: NFL Draft Big Board
If this was a novel, if football was a fairytale, Flowers and the Patriots would run towards each other at the 2023 NFL Draft podium and all live happily ever after. The End.
“The Patriots’ preference at this point would be to address the position with a veteran rather than using their first-round pick, No. 14 overall,” Chad Graff of the Athletic was quoted as saying during the NFL Combine, while referring to DeAndre Hopkins and Brandin Cooks as potential targets for the Patriots.
Smoke-screen season is upon us, but given the Patriots’ track record with first-round receivers — and Flowers’ elevation to that Round 1 range — it would seem that relationship might never blossom. Yet, the following three teams are certainly contenders to land the dynamic Boston College product.
Los Angeles Chargers
If the Chargers want to maximize their Super Bowl window with Justin Herbert, then surrounding him with pass-catching talent is paramount. Mike Williams gives them the size on the perimeter. Keenan Allen is one of the best in the game at what he does. But, the Chargers lack that weapon who can take the top off a defense. Flowers can be that guy for them.
While he’s a ludicrous after-the-catch threat in the short and intermediate ranges due to his change-of-direction ability, acceleration, and contortionistic body control, Flowers also has the speed to trouble the deep third while showing he’s not afraid to snag the ball in tight spots further down the field.
“We’ve drafted probably at least five or six receivers in the last four years maybe,” Ravens GM Eric DeCosta told the media at the NFL Combine. “We’re going to just keep swinging and, and hopefully, at one of these points, we’ll hit the ball out of the park. But that’s our goal. We understand the importance of the position. We’ll keep trying to do it.”
While it’s safe to say that DeCosta’s words caused a social-media storm, it’s a not-so-unspoken secret that the Ravens are likely to target at least one receiver in the 2023 NFL Draft. With Flowers’ natural game-changing ability, he’s Baltimore’s best option for replacing the skill set they lost in trading away Marquise Brown to the Arizona Cardinals.
The Dallas Cowboys have been continually linked with Odell Beckham Jr. and pretty much every other free agent wide receiver in their quest to bring in pass-catching weapons for Dak Prescott. Outside of CeeDee Lamb’s 107 receptions and 1,359 yards, no other Cowboys wide receiver tallied over 50 receptions or 600 yards in the 2022 season. The need is there.
As per research done by Matt Owen of Cowboys Wire, Flowers doesn’t fit the archetype of the Mike McCarthy pass catcher. He’s smaller and lighter than previous draftees. However, his skill set would allow for substantial after-the-catch success in the sort of game that simply doesn’t exist right now for Dallas’ offense.
Flowers Mock Draft Rankings
Scouring mock drafts from analysts across the nation can often give an indication of where a player may land in the NFL draft. It’s not an exact science, of course, but it does give a good idea of potential scheme fits, with some analysts who are attuned to the NFL and team thinking producing mock drafts.
So, where are some landing spots for Flowers based on some of the more recent mock drafts across the media landscape?
Let’s start close to home with Pro Football Network NFL Draft Analyst Ian Cummings, who placed the Boston College phenom with the Kansas City Chiefs in his latest mock draft.
“Zay Flowers might end up being the steal of the first round if he lands in Kansas City,” Cummings writes. “He may be the most energized WR in the 2023 NFL Draft, with the blistering foot speed, accelerative capacity, and balance to send defenders spinning in all phases.
MORE: Where Is the NFL Draft?
The New York Giants are a popular Flowers landing spot when studying an array of recent mock drafts. NFL.com’s Bucky Brooks is one national analyst forecasting Metlife Stadium as a potential destination, referring to their need for “more weapons on the perimeter” while describing Flowers as “an electric playmaker with sticky hands and outstanding route-running skills.”
As mentioned above, the Chargers present the most logical landing spot for the electric Boston College receiver, and multiple mock drafts view this as a likely Flowers landing spot.
Pro Football Network’s James Fragoza paired the two together recently, as did Cam Marino of Stacking The Board, and Kevin Fielder of Vikings Wire.
“The Los Angeles Chargers need more explosiveness at wide receiver, and, to quote Lightning McQueen, ‘I am speed,'” wrote Fielder. “Flowers is one of the fastest wide receivers in the draft, allowing him to be a deep threat at the next level.”
Listen to the PFN Scouting Podcast
Listen to the PFN Scouting Podcast! Click the embedded player below to listen, or you can find the PFN Scouting Podcast on iTunes, Spotify, and all major podcast platforms. Be sure to subscribe and leave us a five-star review! Rather watch instead? Check out the PFN Scouting Podcast on our Scouting YouTube channel.