Chris Olave - WR - Ohio State
Welcome to the rookie profile for Chris Olave. In last year’s draft class, Chris Olave was perceived by many as an early-round prospect. However, Olave opted to stay at Ohio State for a further year and has now cemented his place as a first-round prospect. Olave is a receiver that can play over the top of defenses and makes his presence felt in each game that he plays in. However, he’s also a great route runner who can shift speed and tempo, which leaves defenders uncomfortable a lot of the time. He’s a very special talent and will fit into most systems in the NFL due to his versatility and ability.
Height: 6′ 0″
Weight: 187 lbs
40-yard dash: 4.39s
3-cone drill: DNP
20-yard shuttle: DNP
Vertical Jump: 32″
Broad Jump: 124″
Bench Press: DNP
During the 2019 season, Olave led the Buckeyes receiving corp with 849 yds (also showcasing an excellent 17.3 yds per catch) and added 12TDs. Olave continued his elevation to the National circuit in a shortened season and still racked up an impressive 729 yds and 7TDs, receiving first-team All-Big Ten recognition. In 2021, Olave stepped it up again by putting up 936 yds at an average of 14.4 yds per catch and contributing in the end zone with 13TDs. Olave was once again listed in the first-team All-Big Ten for the second year in a row…
2021 also saw Olave nominated for the Fred Biletnikoff award as a semi-finalist as one of the ten top receivers in the country. In November 2021, Olave become the Buckeyes all-time receiving touchdowns leader, breaking the previous record set by 1999’s Arizona Cardinals 8th round pick David Boston (previous record set between 1996-98)
Olave is an intelligent pass catcher and is deemed as ‘Mr. Reliable’ due to his reliable hands, catching everything thrown his way with some of the best hands in this year’s draft class. An excellent athlete who ran a 10.8 100-meter time whilst also leaping a 23’6 in the long jump. He has quick acceleration, however even more impressive than his speed is the burst of speed that he possesses. Olave’s athletic attributes make him a deep threat option, similar to what we’ve seen of Will Fuller. Olave is also a very intelligent footballer and quite often knows how to seek out soft spots in opposing defenses.
Olave is closest matched to the abilities that we’ve seen from Jerry Jeudy however he lacks the physical attributes we see of Jeudy. At 6’1 and 189 pounds, it will mean that he’ll lack the physicality to win out on all his battles on the outside. One of his major weak points that are quite often pointed out is that Olave doesn’t quite make up the numbers you’d expect on yards after catches given his burst of speed and acceleration skillset. All in all, Olave is a very polished and talented player but definitely needs to get stronger through the off-season.
Pre Draft Analysis
Expected Draft Capital- Late Round 1/ Early Round 2
Chris Olave ideally would suit a system with one of the top quarterbacks in the NFL and a roster that already has a WR1 so that Olave can spread the field and run those deep-threat routes. Perfect landing spots based on this would be the Arizona Cardinals, Buffalo Bills, Tampa Bay Buccaneers or the Green Bay Packers, or even the Minnesota Vikings.
Post Draft Analysis
Draft Capital- Late Round 1, Pick 11
This is an intriguing landing spot as it’s one where a lot of other factors will decide the opportunity that Olave is afforded. Thankfully, it appears that the Taysom Hill experiment is over and done with as Jameis Winston is slated as the Saints starting QB.
At the end of last year, the Saints starting wide receivers were somewhat underwhelming. However this year they project to start with Michael Thomas as he returns from injury, new free agency signing Jarvis Landry and Chris Olave.
This year I would view Olave as a WR3 with the upside to become a WR2. However, if Alvin Kamara misses time due to legal issues or Michael Thomas isn’t fully recovered in time for the new season or goes down again with injury then Olave is a WR2 with WR1 upside.