First Round – Pick #21
Will Fuller – WR – Notre Dame
6’0” – 186
Ok, let’s cover the bad first. At the point that the Texans took Will Fuller, there were two WR’s on the board that will very likely have better careers. Josh Doctson (TCU) who was my #1 WR and Lequon Treadwell (Ole Miss) who was a lot of people’s #1 WR.
Not only did the Texans opt for Will Fuller, but they also gave up next year’s 6th round pick to move up one spot to take Fuller. Unless you have serious intel that tells you that Cincinnati is about to trade up to get him, that trade wasn’t necessary. Washington was not taking Fuller, they already have small and fast guys so they took Doctson, and neither was Minnesota who was also looking for a big WR and took Treadwell.
More from House of Houston
- Are you the 2021 FanSided Sports Fan of the Year?
- Houston Texans: 4 reasons Romeo Crennel is right coach right now
- Astros-Twins Wild Card Series: 5 things to know as MLB postseason begins
- Houston Texans: The Most Underrated Sports Drought Ever
- Houston Texans: J.J. Watt’s early case for NFL Hall of Fame
The knock on Fuller and it is legit, is he drops a lot of balls. Don’t let anyone sugar coat it and tell you different. He had a 13.8% drop rate last season, which in the NFL percentage wise would have ranked him 3rd highest in the league among players that took enough snaps. Fuller however did make up for it with a lot of touchdowns, although I question whether that production will translate to the NFL anywhere near the rate as a college player.
Fuller is not a natural hands catcher, which means he does not pick the ball out of the air with his hands and it’s often a drop when he does. He also does not TRUST his hands, so almost every catch is with arms, basket catch over the shoulder (his best catch) or jump up to catch the ball in the breadbasket.
Those catches are all well and good, but in the NFL, balls are contested WAY more than in college making all of those styles of catching the ball even more difficult. That’s the concern.
However, clearly the Texans were just focused on the speed, 4.32 for Fuller, to stretch the field and try to take the double teams off DeAndre Hopkins. Their 3rd round pick made me feel better about this pick and changed it from a D grade, but I still would have taken Doctson.
Hands matter in the NFL more than any other aspect of a WR. The speed will help him get open, but frankly guys that aren’t natural hands catchers rarely become good hands guys especially if they’ve been player football since age 7 as Fuller has.
Next: Nick Martin Earns A Much Better Grade