NY Jets: Chase Claypool is a perfect mid-round target in the 2020 NFL Draft

NY Jets, Chase Claypool (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)
NY Jets, Chase Claypool (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

The NY Jets will look to address wide receiver this offseason and one route they could go is by drafting Chase Claypool in the middle rounds of the 2020 NFL Draft.

The NY Jets are keeping a close eye on this year’s NFL Combine in search of any prospects who might pique their interest. And one player who showed out this week is Notre Dame wide receiver Chase Claypool.

Claypool entered the Combine with a lot to prove about his overall athleticism. At 6-foot-4, 238 pounds, there were no questions about his physical traits or his contested-catch ability.

But going into the week, scouts anticipated Claypool’s 40-yard dash time to be near 4.60 and they didn’t expect his agility drills to be much better. However, the Canadian-born wideout exceeded everyone’s expectations with a stellar Combine performance.

Claypool ran his first 40-yard dash at a blazing 4.45 stunning scouts in attendance and followed that up with an even better 4.42. That figure is truly remarkable for a player of his size and it’s even more remarkable when put into context.

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Only one wide receiver has ever run a sub-4.45 40-yard dash time at over 230 pounds. That player is none other than Calvin Johnson himself — quite the company for Claypool to share.

But he didn’t just destroy the 40-yard dash, Claypool proved his athleticism extended far beyond his straight-line speed. His 40 1/2″ vertical jump was among the highest in the wide receiver class as was his 10’6″ broad jump.

To put things in perspective, here are a few comparisons to other NFL players throughout the years of the Combine.

Chase Claypool at the 2020 NFL Combine

• Bigger than Cameron Wake

• Faster than Odell Beckham Jr.

• Stronger than Jared Allen

• Jumps higher than Julio Jones

• More explosive than Devin Hester@ChaseClaypool @NDFootball pic.twitter.com/4fLbNWInHv

— NFL Research (@NFLResearch) February 28, 2020

That’s pure insanity — and it seemingly came out of nowhere too. Teams were requesting Claypool to try drills at the tight end going into the week because of his size and perceived limited athleticism.

Claypool wasn’t someone who was expected to be a so-called “Combine Warrior,” but that’s exactly what he was.

The Jets are in desperate need of receiver help this offseason and Claypool could be a very intriguing target in the middle rounds of the 2020 NFL Draft. His excellent Combine showing might have bumped him up a bit, but he would be fantastic value if still there in the third round.

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The Jets would love to bring back Robby Anderson but only if the price is right. And with the speedy deep threat expected to be paid upwards to $12-15 million per year on the open market, it seems increasingly unlikely that he returns.

Jamison Crowder should hold down the slot role, but the status of Quincy Enunwa is still very much uncertain. Enunwa missed all of 2017 and all but one game in 2019 with neck injuries and the Jets might not be able to count on him as a result.

The Jets could opt to make Enunwa a cap casualty opening up yet another starting role. Interestingly enough, Claypool could actually fill a similar role to Enunwa.

Claypool played on the boundary and in the slot in college but he also has the size to work as an H-back similar to how the Jets have utilized Enunwa at times. Perhaps he could be their immediate Enunwa replacement.

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Either way, Chase Claypool made himself some money at the NFL Combine this week and the Jets would be smart to make him a top target come the 2020 NFL Draft.