K.J. Hamler 2020 NFL Draft Profile

K.J. Hamler
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K.J. Hamler Overview

Position: Wide receiver
Height: 5’9”
Weight: 178 lbs
Arms: 30 ¾”
Hands: 9 ⅜”
School: Penn State

Combine Performance Data

40 Yard Dash: N/A
Three Cone Drill: N/A
Bench Press: 15 reps
Vertical Jump: N/A
Broad Jump: N/A

K.J. Hamler 2020 NFL Draft Profile 

Hamler played his Sophomore and Junior years of high school football for Orchard Lake St. Mary’s, a small division three school in Michigan. There, he helped lead the team on back to back state championship-winning seasons in 2014 and 2015. In 2016, Hamler made the move to the IMG Academy in Florida for his Senior season where he played in the team’s opener before unfortunately missing the rest of the season due to injury. However, Hamler still carried a four-star recruiting status and received offers from schools such as Oregon, Tennessee, and Nebraska before committing to Penn State. 

Hamler redshirted his 2017 true Freshman season and in 2018 as a redshirt Freshman, Hamler made his name as a return specialist. Hamler played in 13 games and finished his season with a kick return average of 26.2 yards. An average which ranked 18th in the nation and one which earned him Freshman All-American recognition as a returner. Furthermore, in 2018 Hamler broke Penn State’s Freshman all-purpose yardage record with 1,417 total yards. Hamler again had solid production throughout this past season as a redshirt Sophomore. In 2019, Hamler played in 13 games in which he caught 56 passes for 904 yards and eight touchdowns.        

Strengths

  • Deadly speed; 
  • Solid route running ability with good head and body fakes; 
  • Dangerous acceleration along with agility;
  • Very elusive in the open field and can break big plays after the catch;
  • Versatile offensive and special teams weapon;
  • Good hands and catches almost everything within his catch radius.

Weaknesses

  • Small frame with a small catch radius;
  • Will not consistently win jump balls;
  • Lack of size prevents consistently effective blocking;
  • Lacks physicality in his routes and may struggle to fight through press coverage;
  • Body catcher at times. 

 

NFL Comparison: Brandin Cooks 

Teams With Need at Position: San Francisco 49ers, Denver BroncosIndianapolis Colts, Miami DolphinsPhiladelphia Eagles, New York Giants, New York Jets, Green Bay Packers, New England Patriots, Las Vegas Raiders, Baltimore Ravens, Houston TexansMinnesota Vikings  

Projection: Late second to mid-third round 

The Bottom Line 

Hamler is a smaller receiver who does not have much physicality to his game. Although he deserves credit for his willingness to block and play scrappy, his lack of size prevents him from having much of a physical impact. However, this is perfectly fine for a player of Hamler’s style as he has elite level acceleration, agility, and vertical speed. Hamler wins routes as a technician and when given space to cleanly start his routes, his advanced body fakes along with agility make him very difficult to cover. Additionally, Hamler brings a lot of experience to the return game as he averaged a career kick return average of 23.5 yards. While he will need to develop more functional strength to combat NFL caliber press coverage, Hamler brings eye popping speed to an offense and when the football is in his hands, he is an issue for opposing defenses.

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