Jalen Saunders, WR/PR, Oklahoma


Jets, Round 4. Former transfer from Fresno State. He may be the fifth- or sixth-best WR on the Jets, behind Decker, Evans, Nelson, Ford, and Kerley. So I’m not sure he’s a great fit on the team. But he can be a valuable part of a WR rotation and can be a punt returner, though I don’t love his PR abilities, either.

All-Star Games: Senior Bowl.

Positives: Runs with above-average speed and acceleration, and good quickness. Has above-average hands and can scoop low passes and extend to snag fast and high passes. Above-average routes, and is quick in and out of his breaks. Tracks passes well over his inside shoulder. Shows above-average body control and can adjust well to off-target passes. Above-average concentration and isn’t afraid to go over the middle of the field in traffic and can catch tipped passes. Good balance after contact, and is effective gaining yards after the catch. Willing and adequate downfield blocker. An effective punt returner when he just heads upfield without dancing.

Negatives: Short for the position, with a slight build. Below-average hand size. Will jump for passes for no reason, missing opportunities for yards after the catch. Suspect decision-making and depends too much on his quickness – will run east-west instead of taking the ball upfield when he gets the ball. Consistently questionable punt return fielding decisions, and will field it inside the 10 yard line, or on a bounce, or let the punt get past him, or try to return the ball in heavy traffic instead of fair-catch it. Often lacks decisiveness on punt returns and needs to head upfield faster. Also seems to misjudge the trajectory of punts at times and doesn’t set himself up well for returns. Though he is a willing blocker, he is not strong enough to be effective. Arrested for marijuana possession in December 2012. Below-average vertical leap and overall poor athleticism in his pro day workouts.

Projection: Probably not draftable in dynasty leagues except as a WR5-type bench player.

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