Garrett Wilson - WR - Ohio State University
Welcome to the rookie profile for Garrett Wilson. Wilson is another name getting added to the long list of NFL wide receivers out of the Ohio State University. He has been a clear top NFL wide receiver prospect since his sophomore campaign. Wilson clearly stood out in a crowded wide receiver room including NFL-bound Chris Olave, future NFL wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba, and even more 5-star recruits.
Height: 6′ 0″
Weight: 183 lbs
40-yard dash: 4.38s
3-cone drill: DNP
20-yard shuttle: 4.36s
Vertical Jump: 36″
Broad Jump: 123″
Bench Press: DNP
Garrett Wilson has had a high pedigree since early in high school. He moved from his home state of Ohio to Texas where he went on to break multiple records and play in the All-American Bowl. Following high school, he returned to his home state and committed to Ohio State University as a high 5-star recruit and the second overall wide receiver recruit in the nation. As a true freshman, Garrett Wilson carved out a modest, yet impactful role in the Buckeyes’ offense with 30 receptions, 432 yards, and 5 touchdowns.
As a sophomore, Wilson blew up onto the college football landscape. He was 5 receiving yards shy of leading the team over fellow 2022 NFL WR prospect, Chris Olave. But, he led receivers in total yards, thanks to 67 rushing yards, and was awarded First Team All Big Ten honors. Going into his Junior year, it was assumed that Wilson would be the undisputed WR1 for the Buckeyes, but Olave, somewhat surprisingly, decided to return for his senior season. Despite both Wilson and Olave returning, it was actually sophomore Jaxon Smith-Njigba that led the team in receptions and receiving yards. Wilson was second on the team in receptions, receiving yards, and touchdowns posting 70-1058-12 through the air. That performance was good enough for Second Team All Big Ten before he decided to forgo the bowl game to prepare for the upcoming NFL Draft.
Route running is Garrett Wilsons’ bread and butter. He might be the smoothest route runner in this class with his crisp breaks and excellent use of leverage. He demonstrates great release at the line of scrimmage and within his routes, and constantly creates massive amounts of separation. Additionally, Wilson shows a great understanding of how to stack a DB and consistently get them off balance. On top of what he does before the catch, he has really good hands at the catch point and demonstrates good body control and awareness of where he’s at on the field.
Ohio State used Garrett Wilson all over the field and in a lot of different ways. They made it a point to get Wilson out in space through jet sweeps and wide receiver screens. His athleticism is in full display when he gets into the open field where he can show his sudden bursts of speed, elusiveness with the ball in his hands, and surprising contact balance to gain plus yardage. Finally, Garrett has decent speed for a wide receiver. He’s not a burner in the open field and will get caught by the faster DBs on the field, but can definitely be a threat for explosive plays.
As good as Wilson is, every prospect has holes in their game. For Wilson, his biggest hole is his ability to come down with contested catches. He has a smaller frame and that can be his downfall at times. Luckily, that’s not Wilsons’ game with the amount of separation he consistently creates from his route running. Nonetheless, it’s still an area where he could see improvement. As mentioned, he’s lacking that true home run hitting speed (a nitpicking negative). While Wilson is a willing blocker, defenders routinely get by him without much resistance. Wilson is a hard worker, so perhaps he will clean up his form with proper coaching and improve in this area as well.
Pre Draft Analysis
Expected Draft Capital- Mid/ Late Round 1
There is a legitimate debate between who will be the first wide receiver off the board, and Garrett Wilson is squarely in that conversation. Wilson is a day 1 starter and impact player with the ability to take over as a true WR1 on a lot of teams. He also has the versatility to get manufactured targets early and often. He could go and be the bonafide WR1 from day one for the Las Vegas Raiders or New England Patriots. Or he could come in as the WR2 with the obvious growth path into the team’s WR1 for teams like the Los Angeles Chargers or Cleveland Browns. Lastly, it would be exciting to see him form a scary wide receiver tandem at the Miami Dolphins, New York Jets, or Philadelphia Eagles.
Post Draft Analysis
New York Jets- Round 1, Pick 10
The Jets are building a really nice offensive cast to support Zach Wilson. At the top of both Round 1 and Round 2, the Jets added both Garrett Wilson and Breece Hall, arguably the best wide receiver and best running back in this class. The Jets’ starting offensive wide receivers include Corey Davis and Garrett Wilson lining up on the outside with Elijah Moore being the primary slot wide receiver. Both Moore and Wilson complement each other well and immediately become the top receiving options in this offense. They both provide Zach Wilson with reliable targets that can get open with ease. The addition of Breece also adds a more reliable running back presence in the backfield, to make this team truly multi-dimensional. With the lack of depth behind Corey Davis and Elijah Moore, Garrett Wilson should walk into a starting role and become an immediate contributor.
While Garrett Wilson walks into immediate target competition, unlike some other wide receivers in this class, he provides a nice counterpart to Elijah Moore. He will still be a Day 1 starter, although the coaches will surely say that he has to earn the spot. But with Denzel Mims, DJ Montgomery, Tarik Black, and Braxton Berrios (a primarily slot wide receiver) as the only competition, it’s a no-brainer that Wilson is an immediate impact player for the Jets’ offense. In Dynasty leagues, Wilson is clearly a top-tier wide receiver and also has a case as the WR1 in this class. His success is somewhat tied to the development of Zach Wilson, which can be worrisome. But, with a full offense surrounding Wilson, there is little excuse to not see improvements this year, boding well for Garrett Wilson’s dynasty outlook. In redraft, it’s hard to depend on rookie wide receivers to be consistent contributors. But a shot late in the draft could pay dividends seeing as we have had top 12 rookie wide receivers the previous 2 seasons.