By: Hussam Patel
Amari Rodgers was the main guy last season for Trevor Lawrence and the Clemson Tigers. He is built like a pinball; a slot receiver who has the body of a running back, along with excellent balance and great strength that makes him a YAC monster. He used these traits to average 4-5 touches per game in 2020, and utilized his body control, vision and speed to maximize yards after the catch.
Rodgers was able to work in every area of the field last season, something he couldn't do in 2018 and 2019. As such, he solidified himself as an intermediate weapon and made spectacular plays down the field. His growth included mastery of the route tree in the slot area, and he’s a bit more consistent catching the ball, except when challenged at the jump point and extended catch radius, where his 5'9 frame becomes evident.
His low center of gravity and excellent balance make him tough to tackle. With his improvement in 2020, his route running is so much better. He's taken control of his speed and takes angles where the defender has to adjust their body to catch up with him, especially on slant and out routes. Most of the receivers in this draft class have the quick burst to create initial separation; Rodgers does too, but he doesn’t have the quick burst to create even more separation after his initial cuts.
He relies on his quarterback to throw the ball in time. He will need to clean up his mental drops and work more on the JUGS machine; he has routinely dropped balls that are easily catch-able. At times he makes spectacular catches, and other times the drops are head-scratchers. He will need to be more consistent as a pass catcher to become a massive threat in the slot.
At his pro day he ran a 4.45 timed 40-yard dash, and even took some snaps at running back. He can be a slot receiver and also work out of the backfield on some special packages, provided his offensive coordinator gets creative with him.