Jaylen Waddle College Record: Is he the Fastest Wideout in the Class of 2021?

Published 04/28/2021, 1:10 AM EDT


The 2021 NFL Draft begins on April 29, 2021. The Class of 2021 boasts some serious talent in the form of quarterbacks such as Trevor Lawrence, Justin Fields, Zach Wilson, and Mac Jones. But other offensive options include some talented wideouts such as Ja’Marr Chase, DeVonta Smith, and Jaylen Waddle.

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The up-and-coming wide receiver impressed as Alabama marched towards the CFP National Championship in 2021. He concluded the campaign with 591 receiving yards in 6 games. His season was hampered in October when he suffered an ankle injury when he was tackled while returning the opening kickoff in a game against Tennessee.

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Despite the setback, Waddle opted to forego his senior year and declared for the 2021 NFL Draft. He finished his 3-year NCAA career with 1,999 receiving yards and 17 receiving touchdowns.

But where does he rank amongst wide receivers like Chase and Smith?

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Jaylen Waddle rose to fame while playing for Episcopal High School in Bellaire, Texas. As a senior, Waddle featured in the U.S. Army All-American Game. The 5-star recruit was in major demand by top Division I teams including the likes of Texas, Texas A&M, Florida State, TCU, and Oregon.

The youngster ultimately committed to the University of Alabama on the 2018 National Signing Day. Coach Nick Saban thought he pulled off a major coup by bringing in Waddle.

As a true freshman in 2018, Waddle was named the SEC Freshman of the Year. He concluded his debut season with 45 receptions for 848 yards and 7 receiving touchdowns. In addition to that, he also returned 16 punts for 233 yards and a touchdown.

 

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The following year Waddle was named first-team All-SEC as a return specialist and was named SEC Special Teams Player of the Year. His final season with Crimson Tide was hampered by injury but he is expected to attract major attention in the upcoming 2021 NFL Draft.

His athleticism is what separates him from Alabama teammate and Heisman Trophy winner DeVonta Smith. Waddle clocked a 4.37 40-yard dash at the UA Houston Camp before he even started his college career. When given an opportunity to make a play, he rarely disappoints.

This ‘clutch’ gene is what makes Jaylen Waddle a probable first-round prospect in the 2021 NFL Draft. He is being linked to Brian Flores-coached Miami Dolphins who own the 6th overall pick. Is a potential reunion with Tua Tagovailoa on the cards for Waddle? Watch this space for more.

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Daniel Arambur

1588 articles

Daniel Arambur is an NFL writer and content strategist for EssentiallySports.With more than 1,000 articles, he is one of the senior writers in the NFL cohort at ES. A mass media graduate from the University of Mumbai, Daniel has found the perfect blend of vocation and passion in the sports content niche.

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