Malachi Corley - WR - Western Kentucky
In a draft class loaded with unbelievable talent at wide receiver this year, Malachi Corley stands out as the guy who represents the best value for your money in this rookie class. In this feature i’m going to tell you why you should consider taking him as an early 2nd round pick rather than seeing if he falls to you in the 3rd.
Height: 5′ 11″
Weight: 210 lbs
40-yard dash: N/A
3-cone drill: N/A
20-yard shuttle: N/A
Vertical Jump: N/A
Broad Jump: N/A
Bench Press: N/A
*age is at the start of player’s rookie year
2020 – Recruited by Western Kentucky Hilltoppers as a WR
2022 – Western Kentucky’s WR1; first 1,000 receiving yard season; Named All Conference USA Team Wide Reciever
2023 – Named All Conference USA Team Wide Receiver
The last 2 seasons of Corley’s college career he averaged over 12 yards per reception. In his 2022 season he was dubbed the ‘YAC king’ after amassing 975 yards after the catch in a single season. Corley also forced 40 missed tackles on receptions that year. He’s a strong and elusive route runner. Corley is happy to run over a guy if he’s between him and the end zone. Landing spot could be a large factor for Corley’s development but drawing comparisons to Deebo Samuel will certainly mean he has his suitors.
Incredible hands and an ability to compete for the ball despite not being as lofty as some of his competitors will serve him well in the NFL and some of the ‘undersized’ receivers are seeing great success n the right schemes these days.
Whilst Corley may not yield an instant return on investment I expect him to have a sharp rise once he sees the field. Similarly to the rise of Tank Dell this season.
The prediction is that Corley will be drafted in round 3, meaning the capital isn’t that great in terms of fantasy value. That draft capital can determine the odds of how soon and potentially how often a player sees the field. It is my belief that regardless of where Malachi Corley is drafted he will see the field and he will score points in fantasy terms. However, that draft capital does create a form of risk.
2 fumbles in his time at Western Kentucky doesn’t necessarily show any cause for concern but we all know how different the hits come in the NFL compared to college, for me ball security is an unknown quantity based purely on the step up in defensive standards.
Competition will draw many to be worried about Corley’s ability, having played his entire college career at Western Kentucky University some may consider the standard of competition as a weakness but this past season alone players like Puka Nacua, Jayden Reed and Tank Dell have taken the league by storm despite coming from schools participating in what are considered lesser quality conferences.
Pre Draft Analysis
Expected Draft Capital- Round 3
Being projected to Round 3 of the draft there are a multitude of teams that could be in play for Malachi Corley, Here are my top 3
Jacksonville Jaguars – With question marks over how Christian Kirk may bounce back from injury and if Calvin Ridley will be resigned, Malachi Corley represents relatively low risk as a weapon for Trevor Lawrence. Corley, a Florida native himself would be a welcome addition for the Jaguars fanbase. The big draw back here is that Jacksonville may need to move up in order to get their guy rather than hope he falls to the middle of the round. New England with multiple holes in their roster could be a good trade partner here, for Jacksonville to move ahead of the Giants.
Las Vegas Raiders – A stuttering offense last year built upon Davante Adams, Michael Meyer and Josh Jacobs. The team needs additional receiver support and an aggressive elusive slot receiver like Corely would fit the bill. Whether it’s for Aidan O’Connell or a new quarterback Corely would be a good addition to this in your face contact loving offense. If he falls to them he’s a no brainer here.
New York Jets – Last year the Jets finished up with their 4th quarterback throwing to a stud and two UDFA receivers. Allen Lazard was a healthy scratch all too often and underwhelmed on the field at the best of times. Giving Aaron Rodgers a player like Corley to ease the pressures on Garrett Wilson would open up lots of spaces on the field. If they hit round 3 and haven’t sorted their receiver concerns Corley should be in play.
Honourable mentions – New York Giants and Arizona Cardinals, both very much in need at Wide Receiver but the fit doesn’t feel as good.
About Ryan Woolacott
Love American sports NFL, college football, NHL and NBA. Trying to get into MLB every year without success. I enjoy keeping fit in the gym, travelling, I’m a big foodie and a collector of vintage sportswear.
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