With the 27th overall pick in the 2013 NFL draft, the Houston Texans selected Clemson wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins. Hopkins checks in at No. 21 on SB Nation's top 200 big board and is the top-ranked wide receiver.
Hopkins left school early after an outstanding junior season at Clemson that ended in a win over LSU at the Chick-fil-A Bowl. He caught 82 passes for just over 1,400 yards and 18 touchdowns in 2012, emerging as Tajh Boyd's go-to target with Sammy Watkins having injury issues and off-the-field problems. Throughout his final season with the Tigers, Hopkins proved to be a reliable route runner, and showed off outstanding body control, making the tough catches look easy.
The Texans need help at wide receiver as Andre Johnson nears his mid-30s. DeVier Posey was also injured at the end of the season and will likely start the season on the sidelines. Hopkins is a talented wide receiver that can play opposite of Johnson and give Matt Schaub another reliable target downfield.
In SB Nation's scouting report on Hopkins, there are plenty of positives to take away from his game.
Hopkins consistently gets open because of the precise routes he runs. He's crisp in his motions and sets up his routes well with head fakes and other subtle movements to get open on the outside. While he doesn't have the jaw-dropping speed of some others in this class, his 4.41 time in the 40-yard dash fits how he plays on the field, as he's quick to get down the field and make plays.
When the ball is in the air, Hopkins' focus is top notch. He is in complete control of his body when attacking the football, and he high-points passes with regularity, so his ability to catch in traffic should translate to the next level. Hopkins' hands are among the best in the draft, and he's tough enough and physical enough to handle contact over the middle while maintaining his focus to bring in passes.
His body control will help him at all levels of the defense. While he is able to control himself along the sidelines and make tough catches, he also knows how to elude defenders in the open field after the catch and has the quick feet to do so.
Hopkins had three solid seasons at Clemson, improving his statistical output each year before emerging as a star in 2012. He caught at least 50 passes in every season at Clemson, while snagging nine touchdowns in his freshman and sophomore seasons combined.