Fresh off a national championship run with Florida State, wide receiver Kelvin Benjamin is now celebrating his selection in the NFL Draft. The Carolina Panthers have scooped up the big-bodied wideout with the No. 28 overall pick of the 2014 NFL Draft.
James Dator acknowledges the risk that comes with the selection of Benjamin, but the upside presents just what the Panthers needed:
Benjamin is a raw but fascinating player who has unmatched size in this draft. At 6'5, 240 lbs he immediately offers Cam Newton a huge target in the end zone, as well as a mismatch nightmare for opposing corners. This selection is a risk, a gamble -- one that could be damaging but also an absolute steal if he can be coached up.
Benjamin was instrumental to Florida State's success in 2013. Just a sophomore in eligibility, he had 54 receptions for 1,011 yards and 15 touchdowns, the most important of which was a game-winner with 13 seconds left in the BCS National Championship Game against Auburn.
While he lacks ideal straightaway speed, Benjamin makes up for it with size and range. Here's SB Nation's Stephen White:
Now that lack of initial speed probably does means that Benjamin will never be great for a smoke screen… or a reverse/end-around guy, but who cares when he will be able to get open downfield on chunk plays from day one?
He will instantly improve his team's red-zone production with his ability to beat one-on-one coverage with his size and height and his ability to block in the run game.
Weight: 240 pounds
40-yard dash: 4.61 seconds
Bench press: 13 reps of 225 pounds
Vertical jump: 32 1/2 inches
Broad jump: 9'11 (119 inches)
20-yard shuttle: 4.39 seconds
3-cone drill: 7.33 seconds
Benjamin is most impressive as a red zone threat due to his size and physicality. While a 4.61 40-yard dash isn't going to break any records, a man of his size running that fast definitely turned some heads. He was impressive during drills, as well.