Xavier Legette - WR - South Carolina

Xavier Legette was not a well-known name throughout his first four years of college. He benefited from the additional COVID season as in his fifth year, he broke out in a big way. He tripled his first four seasons of receiving yards combined in 2023 and was the clear top target for Spencer Rattler. But the question is, is he just a one-hit wonder or did he discover something about his game in 2023 that will translate into long-term success at the next level?

Measurables

Height: 6′ 1″

Weight: 221 lbs

Age: 23

40-yard dash: 4.39s

3-cone drill: DNP

20-yard shuttle: DNP

Vertical Jump: 40″

Broad Jump: 10’6″

Bench Press: DNP

*age is at the start of player’s rookie year

College Stats

Receiving & Rushing Table
ReceivingRushingScrimmage
YearSchoolConfClassPosGRecYdsAvgTDAttYdsAvgTDPlaysYdsAvgTD
2019South CarolinaSECFRWR119808.910009808.91
2020South CarolinaSECSOWR6711316.10000711316.10
*2021South CarolinaSECJRWR118637.910008637.91
*2022South CarolinaSECSR13181679.337213.00251887.53
2023South CarolinaSECSRWR1271125517.779-9-1.0080124615.67
CareerSouth Carolina113167814.81216120.80129169013.112
Provided by CFB at Sports Reference: View Original Table
Generated 3/27/2024.

Notable Headlines

Xavier Legette was a low four-star Athlete designated recruit per 247Sports coming out of high school. He played wide receiver for the majority of his high school career but as a senior, he played as a dual-threat quarterback. Despite his Athlete tag in recruiting circles, he ultimately played wide receiver for South Carolina but was not involved right away. Throughout his first four seasons, he appeared in a total of 41 games, but in those 41 games combined, he only produced 42 receptions for 423 yards and 5 touchdowns through the air. 

Something clicked during Legette’s fifth year of college as he became the focal point of the passing game in South Carolina. While there was the departure of former leading receivers Antwane Wells Jr. and Jalen Brooks, it would be surprising if those players were truly holding Legette back as he only had 18 receptions that season and was firmly down the target pecking order. Regardless, he broke out for over 1,250 receiving yards and 7 touchdowns. The performance propelled him to second-team All-SEC honors and with a good performance during the Reese’s Senior Bowl, he has become a legitimately high-end NFL prospect at least according to the media.

Scouting Report

Positives

What initially stands out from Xavier Legette’s profile is his ball skills. He has great extension at the catch point and consistently can reach and make catches outside of his frame. He combines that extension with his body control and ability to make acrobatic catches on the sideline and around defenders. Those traits put together with his reliable hands make him an impressive contested catch playmaker who routinely puts circus catches on display on tape.

In addition to his ball skills, he provides high athleticism to the position with a 9.92/10 Relative Athletic Score based on his testing and measurable results at the NFL Combine. His long speed is impressive at his size with the ability to take catches to the house if he gets green grass in front of him. He also provides nice inside and outside versatility with the ability to align anywhere on the field and remain effective, although most of his damage is done on the outside. Finally, he is a good blocker who brings that same physicality and athleticism to keep defenders away from his teammates.

Negatives

The biggest knock on Legette is the refinement in his route running despite five years with the Gamecocks. He tends to run slower routes when the play isn’t going his way. Despite his good long speed, his acceleration can be lacking and that shows up in both his route running and yards after the catch ability. And despite his physicality and size, he is susceptible to being locked up by the more physical corners that he’s faced. In terms of separation, it’s obvious that he relies on that natural athleticism instead of the nuance of route running like footwork and explosiveness on his breaks or stacking downfield. Although he does generally do good in utilizing his leverage with his size.

His yards after the catch ability is at times lacking as well. Despite his physicality at the catch point, he can be lacking that same physicality in the open field, going down at first contact more than one would like to see. But on occasion, he does show flashes of what happens when he applies that physicality after the catch and breaks a tackle here and there. Would have been great to see this area be more consistent though.

Finally, there is the worry about his one year of production. In four seasons that did contain one COVID season in the SEC, he did not produce really at all. Then he became South Carolina’s leading WR by nearly 1,000 yards. Was that one season an anomaly where he’ll end up as a one-hit wonder because he just took advantage of younger and less experienced talent? Did he truly develop and improve into what he is today and are those traits that were developed translatable to the NFL? Is he done developing and has he already reached his potential due to his experience and age? Or is there still untapped potential there? It’s likely somewhere in the middle of those scenarios.

Pre Draft Analysis

Expected Draft Capital- Round 4

Landing Spots

The athleticism and upside of Xavier Legette are obvious and glaringly stand out. But so are the issues with Legette’s profile and game on film. The Buffalo Bills stand out as a team that needs wide receivers. If they decide to address other needs early in the draft and come back to wide receiver in the mid-rounds, Legette is that upside play that could be worth it. They have their WR1 in Stefon Diggs, at least at this point in the offseason, but he’s aging and has previously expressed his displeasure with the team. It seems like his days are numbered, but a season might be enough for Legette to develop into a WR1 at his top potential, or maybe a reliable WR2 that can provide WR1 games that will be a compliment to a future wide receiver on the team.

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers is another team that stands out as a team that could take Legette and see what he develops into. They don’t have a pressing need, but they don’t have to look too far into the future to see a need is coming soon. Mike Evans is on a two-year deal, but Chris Godwin’s contract is up next offseason. This pick in the mid-rounds could give Legette the time he needs to continue to develop and potentially step in as the WR2 next year behind Mike Evans or in two years behind Chris Godwin. It would give the Buccaneers a lot of flexibility at the position if Legette hits, and if he doesn’t, they still have options with Godwin and Evans.

As always, if you want something more specific to your league- reach out! You can find us on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.