WR mock: How many wideouts will go in Round 1 of 2024 NFL Draft?

    Add another club to the growing list of teams looking for a wide receiver in the 2024 NFL Draft following Wednesday morning’s blockbuster trade that sent star receiver Stefon Diggs from the Buffalo Bills to the Houston Texans. 

    The Bills are left with Curtis Samuel as their top WR option, likely signaling they’ll either take a wideout with the No. 28 overall pick or package that pick with a few others to move up and grab a WR they have rated higher than the late 20s.

    As many as eight to 10 receivers could come off the board in the first round, so here’s a mini WR mock of which players could land where. (Note: this exercise was done with all teams keeping their current draft picks with no trades for rostered players like Tee Higgins or Brandon Aiyuk)

    No. 4 overall | Marvin Harrison Jr., Arizona Cardinals

    Receiver is Arizona’s biggest area of need, and if the Cardinals want quarterback Kyler Murray to not have to run for his life on every drop back, they need to give him a legitimate weapon. Harrison Jr. can be the Cardinals’ WR1 from Day 1, and he has the perfect combination of speed, size, strength and pedigree to quickly develop into a top-flight receiver and form a strong 1-2 punch with Murray. 

    He was tied for third in the country in touchdowns (14) and ranked 10th in receiving yards (1,211). He led all receivers with 65 or more catches with an 18.1 yards-per-reception average. Harrison Jr. has been regarded as the top WR prospect of the last decade, and taking him is the easiest choice the Cardinals can make (if this pick isn’t traded to a team moving up for a QB).

    No. 5 overall | Malik Nabers, Los Angeles Chargers

    With no Keenan Allen or Mike Williams, Chargers QB Justin Herbert is going to need someone to throw the ball to. Some scouts have recently said Nabers is a better prospect than Harrison Jr., and if that’s true, he could be a steal for L.A. at fifth overall.

    The Chargers’ top receivers right now are Joshua Palmer (38 receptions,, 581 yards, two touchdowns) and Quentin Johnston (38 receptions, 431 yards, two touchdowns). While both are fine players, neither is on Nabers level right now, and they’re both better suited to No. 2 or 3 roles. Adding Nabers gives Herbert a bona-fide No. 1 option and a nice building block for Jim Harbaugh’s new offense.

    No. 6 overall | Rome Odunze, New York Giants

    If a QB falls past No. 3, the Giants could easily move up and get him. But for this exercise, they stay put and fill a glaring area of need. Despite leading the NCAA in yards (1,640) and tying for sixth in touchdowns (13), Odunze still feels underrated as the No. 3 receiver in the 2024 class. In any other year, he’d likely be the first wideout off the board.

    Daniel Jones likely isn’t in New York’s long-term plans, but whether it’s him or Drew Lock under center in 2024, the best thing the Giants can do is give him a legit weapon to throw to.

    No. 9 overall | Brian Thomas Jr., Chicago Bears

    Odunze would be a picture-perfect fit in Chicago to pair with presumed No. 1 overall pick Caleb Williams and current wide receivers D.J. Moore and Keenan Allen, but since he likely will be gone by then, Thomas Jr. is the next-best option.

    At 6-foot-4 and 205 pounds, Thomas Jr. can be the jump-ball specialist in the slot with Moore and Allen serving as the top options out wide. He led the country with 17 touchdown catches, and his size and ability to create and use leverage can be an excellent tool for Chicago in the red zone.

    No. 18 overall | Adonai Mitchell, Cincinnati Bengals

    Cincy has at least one more year to make a run with Joe Burrow, Ja’Marr Chase and Higgins, who’s set to play on the franchise tag in 2024, but after that, the Bengals need to prepare for life after Higgins. And that starts with finding his replacement this year on a cheaper, much more affordable contract (they’ll have to pay Chase a monster extension after next season).

    Mitchell can do all of the same things Higgins does with much more speed (he ran a 4.34 in the 40-yard dash at the combine). Mitchell runs great routes with excellent timing and fluidity, he catches seemingly everything that’s thrown his way and he has great ball-tracking skills. The Bengals couldn’t hand-pick a better Higgins replacement.

    No. 20 overall | Ladd McConkey, Pittsburgh Steelers

    After trading Diontae Johnson to the Carolina Panthers, the Steelers need to find another playmaker to pair with George Pickens. McConkey has arguably the best hands of any WR in the draft, he has an excellent route tree, he fares well in man coverage and he can be a safety-net for either Russell Wilson or Justin Fields, whoever the starter ends up being.

    Giving new offensive coordinator Arthur Smith another weapon to work with will only make Pittsburgh’s offense more dangerous in the long run.

    No. 28 overall | Keon Coleman, Buffalo Bills

    With Diggs out, Josh Allen needs a new weapon to throw to. Curtis Samuel was a fine free-agent addition, but he’s not a No. 1 wideout. Coleman is 6-foot-4 and 216 pounds, and he has arguably the best playmaking ability of any WR in this draft. 

    Coleman thrives making the tough catches that no one else can. He doesn’t shy away from physicality and he plays above-the-rim more than most receivers. He’s agile, aggressive, can work the middle of the field just as well as he can down low and his size makes him tough to tackle in the open field. Coleman can have a Deebo Samuel-like impact in offensive coordinator Joe Brady’s offense catching passes from Allen.

    No. 30 overall | Xavier Worthy, Baltimore Ravens

    Odell Beckham Jr. was a bit of a disappointment last season, which is why he wasn’t offered another contract. Zay Flowers, on the other hand, had a breakout rookie year and quickly became Lamar Jackson’s favorite weapon. Drafting a speedy undersized receiver worked well last year, why not go back to the well again this year?

    Worthy set an NFL Scouting Combine record with his 4.21 40-yard dash time, and he has the speed and explosiveness to take the top off any defense. He excels at creating and finding space and he’s a nightmare to try and single cover because of his speed. Pairing Worthy with Jackson, Flowers and tight end Mark Andrews in Todd Monken’s offense may just be downright unfair.

    No. 32 overall | Xavier Legette, Kansas City Chiefs

    With Rashee Rice’s recent legal troubles, adding another receiver just became even more important for Kansas City. Legette has 4.3 speed, and at 6-foot-3, 227 pounds, he’s a receiver nobody wants to tackle in the open field. Not only can he outrun most defenses, but Legette has the size and physicality to punish opposing defenses and rack up yards after the catch.

    Patrick Mahomes proved this year that he doesn’t need a star WR to win a Super Bowl, but just because he can do it doesn’t mean the Chiefs should make him do it. Travis Kelce will get his numbers, but outside of him (and Rice when he’s not allegedly leaving the scene of motor vehicle accidents) the K.C. offense doesn’t have any true playmakers. Drafting Legette solves that problem.

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