Julio Jones Pushing Green as Top WR Prospect

April 04, 2011 | Brian Billick

Julio Jones is a three year starter from Nick Saban’s Alabama Crimson Tide.  He measures in at 6’2 3/4 and 220 pounds.  Jones has always been considered an elite prospect with a high first round grade, but he raised his stock even more during the NFL Scouting Combine.  It was there that he ran a 4.39 forty-yard dash and jumped a 38.5 inch vertical, all while having a bone injury in his foot.  Not only does that show supreme athleticism, but also a certain level of toughness that some NFL prima donnas at the wide receiver position lack.

Jones carries that toughness onto the field as well.  He shows a no fear mentality when going across the middle, and often gives up his body in order to make a catch.  He also displays that 4.39 speed in his route running by maintaining close to full speed when coming in and out of breaks.  He also shows the ability to be a great double move receiver that is so often used in NFL passing systems.  When the ball is in his possession, he runs “angry” and often picks up yards after contact.  Jones is best when the defensive back tries to play press coverage, but could work on his technique to eat up separation when the corner is playing off coverage.  He has above average hands, but will sometimes drop an easy pass by letting it get into his body.

Jones’ combine workout was very impressive, and encouraged NFL scouts and talent evaluators to go back and look at additional tape.  Some teams have claimed to move him ahead of AJ Green on their draft board, but I would still consider him a close second.   I believe Jones to be very comparable to Anquan Boldin and will give his future team that tough presence at the wide receiver position.