Can Nevada WR Romeo Doubs take his scouting report to the next level and complete his long-awaited ascension to the NFL Draft? He returns to college football as one of the most dominant receiving weapons in the game. If the early returns of the Carson Strong-Romeo Doubs connection are any indication, he certainly can.
Romeo Doubs NFL Draft Profile
Position: Wide Receiver
Current Year: Senior
Weight: 200 pounds
Romeo Doubs Scouting Report
Only three returning college football wide receivers had more than 1,000 yards in the 2020 season: South Alabama WR Jalen Tolbert, Memphis WR Calvin Austin III, and Nevada WR Romeo Doubs. Of those three top returning receivers, Doubs had the highest yards per catch at 17.3.
“Dynamic” is a great way to begin describing Doubs, but that word alone doesn’t quite encompass just how exciting of a draft prospect he is. Not only does Doubs have some of the game-breaking traits required to win deep, but he also boasts many of the operational qualities required to separate in the short and intermediate ranges.
For receivers, breaking down one’s play into three categories — before the catch, at the catch point, and after the catch — is a valuable exercise. However, for purposes of symmetry across profiles, I’ll instead analyze Doubs’ athletic foundation, his execution beyond that foundation, and his areas for improvement.
Doubs’ athletic profile
It just feels right to start with Doubs’ athletic profile because that’s where his upside is most apparent. Doubs has good size at 6’2″, 200 pounds. He possesses a long, wiry frame with solid density, and he supplements that frame with excellent athleticism. Doubs has quick feet and superb twitch for his size, and he stores massive amounts of potential energy within his frame. He’s exceptionally explosive out of direction changes, and he has the downfield speed to stack defensive backs.
Doubs’ explosiveness can be dangerous for unprepared defenders. He has the speed and burst to elongate space and rack up yards after the catch. Furthermore, Doubs is slippery as a ball carrier. He owns excellent balance when changing directions, and he can divert course with unpredictable suddenness.
Doubs’ athleticism also shows up at the catch point. The Nevada WR flashes exceptional body control and midair contortion ability. He can break back toward the ball abruptly with his short-range explosiveness. Doubs possesses the vertical athleticism to rise up for passes and high point the ball, and his plus length only compounds his range.
Execution beyond the physical traits
Doubs’ NFL Draft scouting report features an enticing athletic profile which he channels incredibly well. Most notably, his route-running upside is immense, due in large part to his combination of natural twitch and foot speed. Doubs’ legs are almost unhinged with how quickly they can chop and contract. The Nevada WR displays glimpses of devastating suddenness as a route runner, and he can seamlessly transition from lateral displacement to vertical explosion.
Much of Doubs’ downfield separation ability comes from his release proficiency at the line. The Nevada product has a stellar set of releases, constructed with complex footwork combinations. He can beat press with his lateral suddenness and physical entropy, and he can alter his stride lengths to maximize movement in different ranges.
Among other things, Doubs shows glimpses of promise downfield. Even if he’s somewhat inconsistent at the catch point, he still flashes the requisite ball-tracking ability downfield. He’s able to corral passes mid-stride without losing a step. Additionally, Doubs brings versatility to the fold. He can line up in the slot or on the boundary, and he can employ a variety of different route concepts based on where he lines up.
Areas for improvement
If you find Doubs’ NFL Draft scouting report to be appealing after reading the first two sections, that’s no accident. Doubs is indeed an exciting physical talent with many of the tools necessary to succeed in the NFL. However, as much as his upside commands attention, he has several areas to refine.
Doubs’ hands are not where they need to be right now. His hand technique can be sloppy at the catch point, and his coordination can improve as well. He doesn’t always guide passes in, and his hands aren’t as strong or authoritative as desired. Moreover, Doubs is susceptible to focus drops. He can do all of the right things before the catch, but if he doesn’t convert at the catch point, it’s all for naught.
As expected, Doubs is inconsistent hauling in passes through contact. Still, he can refine his separation ability further so he doesn’t have to encounter contact as often. Doubs can build on his route tree a bit more and can also minimize rounded route breaks. Furthermore, Doubs can sink his hips more consistently when conducting direction changes. He has the necessary hip flexibility, but sometimes he plays too tall into his breaks.
Lastly,Doubs can occasionally play himself into a dead end after the catch. He doesn’t separate well on broken plays.
Doubs’ NFL Draft scouting report overview
Heading into the 2021 season, it’s clear where Doubs needs to improve. He needs to become a more consistent player at the catch point. He has the athleticism, body control, and ball-tracking ability to be an exceptional deep threat. Yet, his hand coordination is ultimately the final piece to the puzzle. Without that, Doubs may leave some opportunities on the field.
Having said all this, Doubs’ utility isn’t limited to his downfield ability alone. He has electric potential as a route runner. He’s incredibly twitchy at the line and explosive out of his stance. After the catch, Doubs owns the speed and burst to extend plays, and he can adjust his stride lengths situationally. As long as he improves his consistency as a catcher — and he has the length to improve considerably there — Doubs can easily be an early-round pick and maybe challenge for a spot late in Round 1 if everything breaks his way.
Romeo Doubs Player Profile
If you’re shocked at Doubs’ dominance in college, don’t be. At Jefferson High School in Los Angeles, California, Doubs was essentially the high school football equivalent of Thanos.
As a senior, Doubs carried the ball 93 times for 1,757 yards and 28 touchdowns. He also caught the ball 13 times for 354 yards and 5 touchdowns. On top of his offensive production, Doubs also recorded 18 career interceptions in three seasons on the defensive side of the ball. If that wasn’t enough, he even returned 10 kicks for an average of 45.9 yards per return.
Doubs’ production would imply that he was a coveted recruit, but for whatever reason, he wasn’t. After logging a 4.72 40-yard dash and a 33-inch vertical at 6’2″, 176 pounds, Doubs fell under the radar. He was unranked on ESPN’s board and a mere three-star recruit on 247 Sports. Still, Doubs received scholarship offers from Power Five schools like Rutgers, Boston College, and Washington State.
Nevertheless, Doubs ultimately chose the school that wanted him the most, heading Nevada.
Romeo Doubs’ career at Nevada
Right away, Doubs’ natural talent earned him a role in the Wolf Pack offense. The Nevada WR entered the rotation as a true freshman and put up inspiring numbers in his first collegiate season. As a true freshman, Doubs accounted for 15.5% of Nevada’s passing output, logging 562 yards and 2 touchdowns on 43 catches.
In 2019, Doubs became one of the favorite targets of newly-anointed starting quarterback Carson Strong. He upped his receiving yardage share to 20%, catching 44 passes for 649 yards and 4 touchdowns. For his production, Doubs earned All-Mountain West honorable mention recognition. But his 2020 season would be the best one yet.
In a nine-game 2020 campaign, Doubs accounted for 34.9% of Nevada’s passing output. He hauled in 58 passes for 1,002 yards and 9 touchdowns, earning first-team All-Mountain West recognition in the process. He also affirmed his candidacy for the Biletnikoff Award, given annually to the best receiver in the league. Although DeVonta Smith ultimately won the award, Doubs was in the running.
Doubs’ NFL Draft ascension
Doubs has always had a clear degree of natural talent. Yet, his athletic numbers from high school don’t jump off the page. On tape, however, it’s clear that Doubs has developed his athleticism over time. He’s always been dynamic and electric, but now, he’s explosive, fast, and overflowing with upside.
Now a true senior, with a potential early-round quarterback throwing him the ball, the sky is the limit for Doubs, both literally and figuratively. Doubs will need to improve his consistency at the catch point, but if he can do that, nothing is stopping him from solidifying his reputation — not only as one of the best receivers in the league but one of the best NFL Draft prospects at his position.
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