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Pre-Combine NFL Draft Prospect Rankings: No. 20 to No. 11

Over the last two months we’ve been working diligently to provide you, the readers, with as much actionable information as possible regarding the 2019 NFL Draft class. We’ve profiled over 40 prospects, providing the key advanced stats to know for each player and highlighting the strengths and weaknesses in their profiles.

What follows will be my initial set of rankings of the prospects we’ve written up. Click on the names for more detail. If you notice someone missing, don’t worry. We’ll continue providing content up to and beyond the draft in April. If you have any comments or questions regarding these rankings, feel free to hit me up on twitter at @jhoover9787.

Be sure to check out the previous pieces for all the rankings:

No. 20 – Damien Harris, RB, Alabama

Harris is one of the most efficient running backs in this class on a per-carry basis. He’s also never had more than 150 carries in a season. You could view this as a positive, believing he won’t be worn down from a heavy college workload. Or you could frame it as an inability to beat out his surrounding competition. Either way, if Harris ends up as a top-100 draft pick in a good landing spot, it’ll likely necessitate a bump in my rankings.

No. 19 – Anthony Johnson, WR, Buffalo

Johnson is the oldest WR prospect in this class according to my database. Generally this would scare me off completely but Johnson’s production profile is enough to keep me hanging around. But he could get caught in the wash in a deep WR class if he doesn’t run well at the combine. If he ends up a mid-to-late round draft pick, I’ll likely be forced to move him down my rankings.

No. 18 – Lil’Jordan Humphrey, WR, Texas

Humphrey has just one season of elite production but as one of the youngest WRs in the class I’m willing to take a chance that he’s still on the upswing. Noted for his after-the-catch abilities, particularly given his size, Humphrey profiles as a versatile weapon that if deployed correctly could do real damage. I anticipate him turning in a strong combine performance, and in turn, boosting his draft position.

No. 17 – Noah Fant, TE, Iowa

By all accounts, Fant is an athletic freak. He set school records during spring practices prior to the 2018 season so I expect him to be a star at the combine. That said, it’s important to keep in mind that rookie TEs generally do not become immediate fantasy producers. But if you’re willing to wait a few seasons, Fant looks to have the potential to become the next dynamic receiving threat at the position.

No. 16 – Andy Isabella, WR, Massachusetts

If you’re enthralled by sheer statistical production, Isabella is your guy. But his smaller stature and level of competition faced make some evaluators skittish. While the chances of Isabella becoming a dominate outside threat might not seem likely based on his frame, it’s not entirely without precedent — see Tyreek Hill. If he can back up his claims of a sub-4.3 forty, he’s almost automatically assured a solid draft position and an improved upper range of potential outcomes.

No. 15 – Alexander Mattison, RB, Boise State

Based on age and production, Mattison is quite simply not getting enough credit from the draft community at large. Maybe it’s fear of past Boise State RBs brimming with potential who ultimately slid into irrelevance. Maybe it’s Mattison’s lack of exposure from playing in the Mountain West Conference. Whatever the case may be, Mattison is shaping up to be an excellent arbitrage play on some of the more popular RBs in this class.

No. 14 – Myles Gaskin, RB, Washington

Gaskin’s production profile is nearly unmatched in the 2019 class, including terrific early-career dominance. He’s also a proven pass-catcher with 65 career receptions. But his age is worth noting, as younger prospects tend to outscore their older counterparts, all else being equal. Hovering around 200 pounds, Gaskin will greatly benefit from a strong combine, particularly in the 40-yard-dash.

No. 13 – D.K. Metcalf, WR, Mississippi

Metcalf is a prime example of potential versus production. His advocates see a physical freak built to dominate on the outside at the next level. His critics point to a lengthy injury history and putrid production profile as real reasons for concern. I fall somewhere in between those two positions right now but will lean heavily on his draft position as a primary indicator of his realistic ceiling for fantasy purposes.

No. 12 – Josh Jacobs, RB, Alabama

After a solid junior season, Jacobs has emerged as the 2019 RB1 for some very sharp analysts. I’m not quite there yet, but I do believe he has some of the traits necessary to make a big fantasy impact, including a size/age/production profile that is strikingly similar to Alvin Kamara. If he tests well at the combine he could push into the first round. If that happens, he’ll almost certainly move up my board.

No. 11 – Greg Dortch, WR, Wake Forest

Dortch is a small WR from a second-tier ACC program but his age-adjusted production is terrific. An early declaration with a breakout season, set to play his rookie year at age-21, Dortch checks a bunch of boxes for what we look for in a prospect here at RotoViz. It’s not entirely clear what his primary role will be at the next level, but from an analytical perspective he’s a solid prospect.

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