NFL Draft - Chris Olave vs Garrett Wilson - Battle of the Buckeyes

It's been 15 years since the last time Ohio State Buckeyes had a receiver taken in the first round of the NFL Draft. Now there is every chance they could have two contenders to do the same.

These highly talented prospects heading into the NFL Draft, with both being predicted to go in the first round. I am just curious to see how these two compare with each other. Although they are unique in the talent they put on tape, they offer a product that is surprisingly similar. Their height and weight are similar, they possess speed, both are great at creating separation, they offer a deep threat, are shown to be tricky route runners and their stats are fairly similar.


Oh and did I also mention they played for the same college team at the same time, the Ohio State Buckeyes?


Let's break down both prospects.





6ft 1" - 189lbs

6ft 0" - 190lbs

Senior

Junior

Receiving

2021 - 65 Receptions - 936 Yards - 13 Touchdowns

2020 - 50 Receptions - 729 Yards - 7 Touchdowns

2019 - 49 Receptions - 849 Yards - 12 Touchdowns

2018 - 12 Receptions - 197 Yards - 3 Touchdowns

Receiving

2021 - 70 Receptions - 1058 Yards - 12 Touchdowns

2020 - 43 Receptions - 723 Yards - 6 Touchdowns

2019 - 30 Receptions - 432 Yards - 5 Touchdowns


Key Attributes

  • Good overall speed

  • Finds weakness in coverage across the middle of the field

  • Great at making himself available on extended plays

  • Very good at going up & catching the ball

  • He picks up the trajectory of the ball early, adjusting when required

Key Attributes

  • A great burst of speed

  • Creates separation with speed and movement

  • He's really good at selling misdirection/cuts, which makes him hard to tackle

  • Versatile - Used all over the field

  • Deep threat





Although like most prospects we will need to see more growth before we can feel comfortable with them being in that top tier of future NFL receivers, they certainly bring a lot to the table. After following the college game in more detail over the past two seasons, Chris Olave looked the more polished receiver going into this year. Many predicted he would likely be a first-round pick in last years NFL draft until he surprised everyone by committing to another year at Ohio State.


He certainly followed up last year with another solid season and hasn’t hurt his stock going into this year's draft.


Garrett Wilson broke out last year and went into this season with a lot of expectations. He certainly delivered, outscoring Olave with five more receptions & 122 more receiving yards in what was a deep receiving core. Wilson feels like the more fun, explosive player but that could be simply because Olave has been there and done it for the past three seasons, whereas Wilson feels like the newer player on the block.


My predictions would be that Wilson has the higher ceiling. His cutting ability and movement seem to be at an elite level already. He also seems to have a slightly quicker initial burst of speed out of the two.


Both are great in finding separation and offer a deep threat due to their route running ability and speed. This is where I slightly favour Olave though. Despite not necessarily possessing the same ceiling, I do think he offers a slightly higher floor. Perhaps that’s simply down to playing one more year at the college level, perhaps it’s the fact he’s had three really good seasons for Ohio State compared to Wilson’s two. Either way, I feel he is just slightly more crisper on his routes and offers more reliable hands in the bigger moments.


I’ve read some say they have concerns with Olave being inconsistent when contending catches, which I have seen, although he has also proven he can go up and make plays in these situations too but I also have as much concern with Wilson on a few drops due to thinking about where he is about to take off and run instead of focusing on catching the ball first.


Many online draft websites are leaning in favour of Wilson over Olave. Olave is certainly a top 5 receiver according to most with him being ranked third or fourth across the board. Wilson seems to be more in the top two conversations, with him coming out on top on many sites.


Mel Kipper recently dropped his first mock draft which included Garrett Wilson going 13th overall to the Cleveland Browns and Chris Olave going 19th to the Eagles. Two franchises that haven’t exactly had much success with wide receivers over recent years but could do far worse than taking either of these if they want to buck that trend.


Ironically it’s been 15 years since Ohio State have had a receiver taken in the first round since Ted Ginn Jr was drafted by the Dolphins in 2007. All of a sudden they could easily end up with two more in this

draft.


Who are you picking out of the two Buckeyes receivers?






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