Position: Wide receiver
Weight: 208 pounds
School: Ohio State Buckeyes
Combine Performance Data
40-yard dash: 4.35 seconds (fifth-best among wide receivers)
Bench press: 18 reps
Vertical jump: 37.5 inches
Broad jump: 10 feet, 5 inches
Three-cone drill: 7.01 seconds
20-yard shuttle: 4.15 seconds
Terry McLaurin 2019 NFL Draft Profile
If there’s one word that describes Terry McLaurin‘s football career in both high school and college, it would have to be winning. He won four state titles while at Cathedral High School in Indianapolis, IN, with his senior season particularly noteworthy. That year, he impressed mightily in a hybrid-back role, totaling 953 receiving yards and eight touchdown catches in addition to 744 rushing yards and six touchdowns on the ground. It resulted in him being named Indiana’s Mr. Football in 2013.
A top-50 wide receiver prospect according to Rivals, 247Sports, and Scout, McLaurin committed to Ohio State and comprised a consensus top-five recruiting class. He redshirted during the Buckeyes’ championship season of 2014 and saw minimal action a year later. Over the next three years, though, he slowly but surely emerged as an integral part of the OSU receiving corps. It began as a redshirt sophomore when he appeared in all 13 games, starting four of them, and hauling in two touchdown grabs.
Urban Meyer recognized McLaurin’s role as a team leader by naming him a captain both in 2017 and 2018. The first of those seasons saw him register 436 yards receiving and six touchdown catches, both of which were top three on the team. As a redshirt senior, he added a further 701 yards and accounted for 11 touchdowns, the latter of which was second-best on the team behind fellow 2019 draft prospect Parris Campbell. Those two aren’t the only Buckeye receivers on the radar of NFL teams as Johnnie Dixon is also expected to get drafted this year.
- showcases an ability to elude and make plays after the catch;
- a nuanced route-runner who can subtly get open;
- able to get past single-high help outside the numbers and take the top off defenses;
- has an added gear at his disposal once the ball’s in his hands;
- can react and adjust to come down with inaccurate throws;
- physical and capable of separating at the top of his route;
- able to improvise as a means of getting open for his quarterback;
- should contribute immediately on special teams.
- takes a while for him to accelerate to top speed;
- cradles the ball into his arms too often instead of catching with his hands;
- needs to run routes with more sharpness at transition points;
- could add to his route repertoire;
- uncertain as to whether he has the strength to release from press;
- elusive in space but generally brought down on initial contact;
- not much on film that suggests he can effectively block downfield;
- just a single season of above-average production in college.
NFL Comparison: Paul Richardson
Teams With Need at Position: Arizona Cardinals, Baltimore Ravens, Buffalo Bills, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Green Bay Packers, Indianapolis Colts, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, San Francisco 49ers, Washington Redskins
Projection: Fourth to fifth round
McLaurin’s talent played a part in OSU quarterback Dwayne Haskins breaking a Big Ten single-season touchdown record previously held by Drew Brees. He’s extremely capable of getting open downfield and does a good job separating at the stem of his routes. And if he gets into open space or is able to get past corners over the top, he’s a dangerous big-play threat. He’s also able to help out his quarterback if the pocket collapses and he’s forced to scramble to keep the play alive.
But there are definitely concerns. McLaurin’s route transitions tend to be too rounded for the most part and needs more crispness. Though he ran an impressive 40 at the Combine, that explosiveness doesn’t show up on film as much as you’d like. And in order for him to realize his ceiling at the next level, he must show that he can effectively deal with jams at the line of scrimmage against physical press corners. Improving his ability to make contested catches could also help.
At the end of the day, McLaurin projects as a day three selection who should provide solid depth to a team’s receiving corps. He has immediate special teams value and though it might take time for him to get consistent volume from a receptions standpoint, he has the potential to develop into a consistent contributor. In time, he should be able to get starter-level reps as a number two receiving option.