2021 NFL Draft: Rashod Bateman a true No. 1 wide receiver in Minnesota

BleedGopher

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per Scott:

The Minnesota playmaker will get a chance to showcase that this season against a challenging Big Ten schedule that features a Justin Fields-led Ohio State squad that made the College Football Playoff last season. With Bateman’s help, Minnesota will look to bounce Ohio State and earn a spot in the 2021 College Football Playoff. If history is any indication, Bateman tends to shine the brightest when he is needed the most. His two most significant games in 2019, came against Minnesota’s highest-ranked opponents, Wisconsin and Penn State. Bateman amassed a staggering 13 catches for 350 yards and two scores in those two contests alone.

For comparison’s sake, Bateman features a mixture of former LSU receiving greats Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham Jr. in his game. Both receivers show exceptional concentration with the ball in the air, coupled with strong and dependable hands. Bateman also shows deceptive long speed and after-the-catch ability. He doesn’t appear to have elite speed but is continually running away and separating from defenders to make the catch. All of these great traits translate to Bateman becoming a first-round pick following the 2020 college football season. He could be selected as early as the top-15, with an outside chance at being the top wide receiver prospect off of the board.


Go Gophers!!
 

Mitu

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I love that this article presumes we are going to the B1G Championship Game and playing OSU, because they are not on our schedule this year.
 

PitinoFan

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I’m honestly beginning to think this is the assumption made by most people, because “Minnesota.” He’s probably going to run something in the 4.4s.


He doesn’t appear to have elite speed but is continually running away and separating from defenders to make the catch.”
 

MNVCGUY

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I love that this article presumes we are going to the B1G Championship Game and playing OSU, because they are not on our schedule this year.
Beat me to it. Either the writer was too lazy to actually look at our schedule or he has us penciled into the Big Ten Title game against Ohio State. Given the state of "journalism" these days I am going to guess it was probably a case of him not being willing to take the 10 seconds needed to actually confirm whether or not Ohio State was on our 2020 schedule.

Mistake aside, not a bad writeup on Bateman overall and goes fairly in depth. I would expect Bateman to get a ton of draft buzz as the season goes on. We have not had a lot of really high draft picks go through here but if Winfield can sneak into the first round this year we could go back to back years with first round draft picks assuming Bateman goes pro after this year like most expect him too.
 

Governor Sibley

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All of these great traits translate to Bateman becoming a first-round pick following the 2020 college football season. He could be selected as early as the top-15, with an outside chance at being the top wide receiver prospect off of the board.
Correct!
 

GopherDog1

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Scott Gorman is one of the most intelligent college football writers in the US.
 

hungan1

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It could be we'd have two 1st Round draft picks next year.
 

MNVCGUY

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It could be we'd have two 1st Round draft picks next year.
Who are you projecting at the other one - Faalele or Morgan? I would assume Faalele just based on his size which the NFL teams will love if he proves to have enough technique to be ready for the NFL.

I am betting there will be some NFL speculation about Morgan but I just don't see him going pro till after his senior year. He just seems so bought into what Fleck is doing here that it would really surprise me to see him leave early for the NFL. Course that is all just based on a gut feeling.
 

Mitu

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Who are you projecting at the other one - Faalele or Morgan? I would assume Faalele just based on his size which the NFL teams will love if he proves to have enough technique to be ready for the NFL.

I am betting there will be some NFL speculation about Morgan but I just don't see him going pro till after his senior year. He just seems so bought into what Fleck is doing here that it would really surprise me to see him leave early for the NFL. Course that is all just based on a gut feeling.
I really go back and forth on Morgan's pro prospects. The cynic in me says he just doesn't have the arm strength and zip on his passes to make it at the next level. His footwork and pocket awareness dont scream NFL to me either. However, I'm excited to see how he does in 2020. Returning the entire OL will be huge for him.
 

PitinoFan

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Who are you projecting at the other one - Faalele or Morgan? I would assume Faalele just based on his size which the NFL teams will love if he proves to have enough technique to be ready for the NFL.

I am betting there will be some NFL speculation about Morgan but I just don't see him going pro till after his senior year. He just seems so bought into what Fleck is doing here that it would really surprise me to see him leave early for the NFL. Course that is all just based on a gut feeling.
Faalele doesn’t move nearly well enough to be a first round pick.

Boye Mafe does. He just needs a season or more of high level production to go along with the athleticism.
 

MNVCGUY

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Faalele doesn’t move nearly well enough to be a first round pick.

Boye Mafe does. He just needs a season or more of high level production to go along with the athleticism.
I agree that Faalele still has a ways to go but think he could get there. His size will move him way up draft boards as long as the teams can see any sort of potential at all because guys that size that can move are hard to find. Hopefully everyone decides it is in his best interests to stay in college and play 4 years before going pro.

As for Mafe - super excited to see what he can do. Don't think he will be on the NFL radar after this year unless he just blows up in a massive way, but agree he could be one to keep an eye on if he lives up to the potential he seems to have. Plus he just has a really cool name that broadcasters would love.
 

PitinoFan

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I agree that Faalele still has a ways to go but think he could get there. His size will move him way up draft boards as long as the teams can see any sort of potential at all because guys that size that can move are hard to find. Hopefully everyone decides it is in his best interests to stay in college and play 4 years before going pro.

As for Mafe - super excited to see what he can do. Don't think he will be on the NFL radar after this year unless he just blows up in a massive way, but agree he could be one to keep an eye on if he lives up to the potential he seems to have. Plus he just has a really cool name that broadcasters would love.
Fair enough on Faalele.

If Mafe puts up a big sack total early on, he’ll be on their radar, but it’s also possible he could be viewed as a project, similar to Danielle Hunter. That guy will get drafted somewhere, just based on his athletic traits. He chased down Bo Nix in a blink of an eye. I’m sure the scouts who were at that game noticed.
 

fmlizard

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Just a guess, but Faalele might go Rd 1 if he were eligible this year. He might not be Rd 1 or even drafted by 2021 or 2022 when he leaves the U. He showed plenty of flashes in 2019 but also plenty of holes, and currently the idea of him is better than his actual game.
 

PMWinSTP

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Beat me to it. Either the writer was too lazy to actually look at our schedule or he has us penciled into the Big Ten Title game against Ohio State. Given the state of "journalism" these days I am going to guess it was probably a case of him not being willing to take the 10 seconds needed to actually confirm whether or not Ohio State was on our 2020 schedule.

Mistake aside, not a bad writeup on Bateman overall and goes fairly in depth. I would expect Bateman to get a ton of draft buzz as the season goes on. We have not had a lot of really high draft picks go through here but if Winfield can sneak into the first round this year we could go back to back years with first round draft picks assuming Bateman goes pro after this year like most expect him too.
Lazy? Seems pretty clear to me he is talking the B1G championship game.

From the OP and article...

"With Bateman’s help, Minnesota will look to bounce Ohio State and earn a spot in the 2021 College Football Playoff."
 

hungan1

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I really go back and forth on Morgan's pro prospects. The cynic in me says he just doesn't have the arm strength and zip on his passes to make it at the next level. His footwork and pocket awareness dont scream NFL to me either. However, I'm excited to see how he does in 2020. Returning the entire OL will be huge for him.
I just threw a second 1st Round pick idea to get some reaction. Tanner has an opportunity to work on his delivery form further. He has a zip and a quick release. He can be successful with that at the next level under the right conditions.

Look for telltale signs next season. If he exceeds his production from last season given the pieces that are in place on offense, he may pique some NFL interest.

He is part of the Toos. His arm strength is nowhere close to Drew Brees who is rated the No. 4 QB in arm strength. Aaron Rodgers is ranked No. 1. But, you never know.

 

John Galt

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I agree that Faalele still has a ways to go but think he could get there. His size will move him way up draft boards as long as the teams can see any sort of potential at all because guys that size that can move are hard to find. Hopefully everyone decides it is in his best interests to stay in college and play 4 years before going pro.

As for Mafe - super excited to see what he can do. Don't think he will be on the NFL radar after this year unless he just blows up in a massive way, but agree he could be one to keep an eye on if he lives up to the potential he seems to have. Plus he just has a really cool name that broadcasters would love.
Right now, it’s debatable as to whether Faalele will be starting in 2020. Our line played its best against Auburn with Schlueter and Andries at Tackle. Picking Faalele in rounds 1-3 at this point is based on potential and not on-field production. He will need to improve significantly in 2020 to be a 1st or 2nd round pick.
 

Mitu

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Right now, it’s debatable as to whether Faalele will be starting in 2020. Our line played its best against Auburn with Schlueter and Andries at Tackle. Picking Faalele in rounds 1-3 at this point is based on potential and not on-field production. He will need to improve significantly in 2020 to be a 1st or 2nd round pick.
LOL aren’t you the same guy who said we shouldn’t pass to TEs because that’s one fewer pass attempt to a WR? Like it’s a zero sum game?
 

John Galt

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LOL aren’t you the same guy who said we shouldn’t pass to TEs because that’s one fewer pass attempt to a WR? Like it’s a zero sum game?
Lol - are you the guy that wants to throw to Ko Kieft over Bateman? It absolutely is a zero sum game.
 

PitinoFan

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Lol - are you the guy that wants to throw to Ko Kieft over Bateman? It absolutely is a zero sum game.
Right? While we’re on the subject, why even run the ball? Mo averages something like 5 yards per carry vs. Bateman’s 20+. Get on the horn and let PJ know he’s leaving a lot of yards and points on the table.

On a serious note, Bateman is going to draw more attention than ever this season. Making defenses defend a pass catching TE every once in a while should help open things up for him a little, and in theory, give him more targets. I don’t expect Morgan to force too many balls into double coverage when there are one on one options available elsewhere, whether it’s BSF or CAB.
 

paulser21

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Right? While we’re on the subject, why even run the ball? Mo averages something like 5 yards per carry vs. Bateman’s 20+. Get on the horn and let PJ know he’s leaving a lot of yards and points on the table.

On a serious note, Bateman is going to draw more attention than ever this season. Making defenses defend a pass catching TE every once in a while should help open things up for him a little, and in theory, give him more targets. I don’t expect Morgan to force too many balls into double coverage when there are one on one options available elsewhere, whether it’s BSF or CAB.
And every pass to the wide receivers. Wait, Bateman is our best WR so every pass goes to him. So every single play is a pass to Bateman. Sound logic.
 

hungan1

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CAB will need to step up big time. Beyond RB, CAB, and Demetrius Douglas, who will emerge from the shadows?

Will Seth Green be utilized more as a WR?

We haven't heard boo from Nnamdi Adim-Mademere, Mike Stephen Brown, Clay Geary, did I miss anyone of significance?
There is an opportunity here from someone to step up.

The bottom line for WRs is there is stiff competition.

It will be an interesting Fall to see what incoming Daniel Jackson, Douglas Emilien, or Jonathan Mann will do. Will one of them step up and play as a true Freshman? Even if they own 5% of the passing production, that is enough to disrupt and give pause to a lot of Defenses.

They have to be grooming the heir apparent to Bateman, CAB, and of course the departed TJ.

The intriguing thing is if Brevyn Spann-Ford and Bryce Witham will step up and become legitimate threat as pass catching TEs under Mike Sanford's Offense. Will he open up the Offense even more?

IMHO, the "new look offense" will be pretty lethal with the crop of RBs, WRs, and TEs and the continued success of the OL. I look for greater things from Tanner Morgan.

Zack Annexstad needs quality reps this Spring and Fall practices. Jacob Clark and Cole Kramer are positioning themselves fot the battle for No. 3. Heaven forbid if TM ever gets injured, we need the backups to be game ready.

There is a lot to be optimistic about the Offense.

I am also hearing that the speed of the Defense may surprise a lot of people.
 
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John Galt

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The I Heart TEs crowd is relentless. In every thread they find a way to interject how much better off we would have been if only they were targeted more. No amount of logic about having Bateman, Johnson and Bell works. No discussion around having 3 really good RBs. All they know is the TEs weren’t utilized enough, and dammit, they’re still pissed over the injustice.
 

PitinoFan

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The I Heart TEs crowd is relentless. In every thread they find a way to interject how much better off we would have been if only they were targeted more. No amount of logic about having Bateman, Johnson and Bell works. No discussion around having 3 really good RBs. All they know is the TEs weren’t utilized enough, and dammit, they’re still pissed over the injustice.
Can we expect you criticize the staff this year, when we see a substantial increase in TE targets? It’s coming.
 
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