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2024 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Marvin Harrison Jr.

The consensus No. 1 wide receiver in the 2024 NFL Draft, Marvin Harrison Jr., is the son of longtime Indianapolis Colts legend and NFL Hall of Famer Marvin Harrison Sr. A former four-star recruit out of high school, he attended La Salle College High School in his hometown of Philadelphia Pennsylvania before transferring to St. Joseph's Preparatory School where he would lead the team to three consecutive state championships while setting league records in both receiving yards and touchdowns. Ultimately, committing to play football at Ohio State University, Harrison Jr. was ranked as the nation's 14th-best player at his position. The 21-year-old turned down offers from Florida, Michigan, Penn State, LSU, Notre Dame, Texas A&M, and his father's alma mater, Syracuse University.

Stepping onto the scene in Columbus in 2021, the 6'4" wideout struggled to earn playing time in his freshman season amid a loaded wide receiver room at Ohio State that featured future first-round NFL Draft Picks Garrett Wilson, Chris Olave, and Jaxon Smith-Njigba. Finally making a name for himself in his sophomore season with the Buckeyes, Harrison Jr. cemented himself as the Buckeyes' number one target. Highlighted by a 10 reception for 185-yard performance against the Penn State Nittany Lions, he would be voted a unanimous All-American while also being named the Richter-Howard Receiver of the Year in the Big Ten. Entering his final year at Ohio State as the top wideout in the nation, Harrison Jr. concluded his college career by recording 1,211 yards and 14 touchdowns en route to winning the Fred Biletnikoff Award.

Player Bio

Name: Marvin Harrison Jr.

Jersey: No. 18

Position: Wide Reciever

School: Ohio State

Class: Junior 

Height: 6'4"

Weight: 204 lbs 

Games Watched: vs. Penn State (2022), vs. Michigan State (2022), Michigan (2022), Penn State (2023), Michigan (2023), Michigan State (2023)

RAS Score Comp:

Note: Harrison Jr. did not workout at the NFL Scouting Combine or participate in Ohio State's Pro Day.

Player Breakdown

Hands/Ball Security (14.5/15)

Harrison Jr. possesses excellent hand-eye coordination with soft yet firm hands. His wide catch radius allows him to snatch the ball out of the air easily. Furthermore, the two-time first-team All-Big Ten member can use his 6'4 frame to make tough catches away from his body. While his drop total increased from three in 2022 to six this past season, half of those came in one game against Purdue, making it not an alarming area of concern as he transitions to the NFL level.

Contested Catch (10/10)

One of the best go-and-get-it-jump-ball wide receivers in college football, Harrison Jr. can use his frame to out-position opposing defensive backs both in the red zone and on intermediate routes. He attacks the ball in the air with confidence. The 21-year-old uses excellent body control and leaping ability in terms of fade and back shoulder concepts. He also has the strength to hang onto passes in the air while fighting through contact.

Tracking/Body Control (10/10)

Harrison Jr. has exceptional spatial awareness when playing and tracking the football, which allows him to work the sidelines easily. He also demonstrates natural ability and instincts by displaying late hands on tape to fool opposing corners when their backs are turned to the play. Furthermore, he can let the ball fall naturally into his hip pocket while not allowing the defender to disrupt him at the catch point. He also understands how to work back through the ball to draw flags for pass interference.

Route Running (8.5/10)

Utilizing nimble feet off the line of scrimmage, Harrison Jr. applies a controlled pace and tempo when running routes to keep opposing corners guessing. He is strong at attacking leverage by planting his foot in the ground after he stems to hold a defender in off coverage in place. He can also force defensive backs to open up their hips early. With an advanced understanding of how to attack press coverage, the one-time Graham–George Offensive Player of the Year uses active hands to defeat press attempts. While he remains a nuanced route runner, Harrison Jr. could add more variation as a pro, which would pull this score down slightly.

Separation (8.5/10)

Harrison Jr. can manipulate defenders with his upper and lower body to create separation. He can easily change direction at the top of his route without breaking stride to pull away from cornerbacks. Harrison Jr., a natural mover who covers chunks of ground with long strides, is not a burner like other wide receiver prospects in this class. Nonetheless, he has consistent play speed and a natural feel for space, making him extremely tough to handle.

Release (7/10)

While Harrison Jr. has a quality release package that allows him to gain a step on most cornerbacks off the line of scrimmage, there is room for him to continue to expand this part of his game. Likely to become a high-volume go-to target for any passing game right away at the NFL level, he does not have an elite first step like other players in this class, which can allow top defensive backs to stay in his hip pocket early on during vertical passing routes.

Run After the Catch (7/10)

Harrison Jr. does not have a true extra gear to pull away from opponents. While he did receive some designed touches in the Buckeye's offense, he could be more creative with the ball in his hands. Furthermore, at just 205 lbs with his 6'4 frame, he will not bully opposing defensive backs for extra yards with just five missed tackles last season, according to Pro Football Focus.

Vertical Speed (8/10)

Harrison Jr. did not run the 40-yard dash after choosing not to participate in the NFL Scouting Combine or Ohio State's pro day. Reportedly telling the Athletic that he would run in the high 4.3 range, the junior has real-deal open-field speed to pull away from defenders downfield. A three-level offensive threat who can win on short and intermediate routes, he is best on deep passing concepts like go balls, comebacks, double moves, and deep stop routes.

Burst/Acceleration (8.5/10)

Harrison Jr. displays sudden explosiveness on tape when running vertical routes, allowing him to run by and stack opposing corners. He also shows a burst at the top of his route when stemming to force defenders to open up their hips and knock them off their spots. Despite his 6'4 frame, he was tracked at 22.3 MPH on his 71-yard touchdown reception in Ohio State's Week 2 win against Youngstown State.

Athleticism (4.5/5)

Harrison Jr. is a polished route runner with all the makings of a prototypical no. 1 wide receiver at the NFL level. He is an explosive mover with long strides to stack defensive backs and create space. Furthermore, Harrison Jr. also shows off his hyper athleticism on tape by displaying freak body control, contortion ability, and flexibility at the catch point on 50/50 balls.

Blocking (3.5/5)

His blocking skills will need refinement upon landing in the NFL. There were instances on film in which Harrison Jr. would fail to sustain his block effectively. Still, he was eager to block for his teammates in the run game. He brings great energy and uses his power and length to latch on and get his hands on opposing defenders.

Versatility (4.75/5)

Ultimately, Harrison Jr. has the prototype and projects to be an X-receiver in the NFL. Nonetheless, the Buckeyes moved the star wideout throughout the formation last season. According to Pro Football Focus, he took 71 snaps in the slot in 2023. Furthermore, Ohio State also used him in motion in the backfield in the screen game and on designed touches. A true three-level threat, Harrison Jr. is any offensive coordinator's dream chess piece.

Player Summary

Harrison Jr. is arguably the most outstanding wide receiver prospect since Calvin Johnson came out of Georgia Tech a decade ago. He appears to be every bit the player his Hall of Fame father was. Possessing elite size and measurables at 6'4, he remains one of the smoothest route runners in the draft. The Philadelphia native combines this with outstanding play strength and body control, allowing him to go up and make highlight-reel plays on 50-50 balls in the air. Making a case for the best player in the draft, Harrison Jr. can be an All-Pro caliber guy in year one and will be able to massively upgrade the passing game to whatever team he is selected to.

Rookie Projection: All-Pro Caliber Receiver

Third-Year Projection: Top Five Wide Receiver

Final Grade: (94.75/100) Top-10 Talent (No. 1 Ranked Player on the TDTMedia Board)

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