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Braxton Miller's move to receiver boosts his NFL potential

The Ohio State senior could go from being an afterthought prospect to a legitimate offensive threat.

Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

Braxton Miller's move from quarterback to a hybrid wide receiver role at Ohio State not only helps the Buckeyes, but it helps Miller's chances as an NFL prospect.

As a quarterback prospect, Miller didn't have much regard. Despite starting for three seasons and twice being named Big Ten Offensive Player of the Year, he was still too prone to pulling the ball down and running. Miller's touch was inconsistent, as was his accuracy. While his arm was plenty strong, he never seemed to be able to control it like you'd want out of a legit NFL prospect at the position.

There is also the issue of Miller's throwing shoulder. He has yet to throw a pass at full strength after undergoing two surgeries for a torn labrum.

Miller is now moving to H-back for Ohio State, a position where the Buckeyes already have proven commodities in Jalin Marshall and Dontre Wilson. Regardless of the depth chart at OSU, Miller will get the ball in his hands. After that he can show off this dazzling open-field speed and moves.

Now Miller gets a head start on developing as a pass catcher instead of a pass thrower. Some thought Michigan's Devin Gardner should have made the move last season. He didn't and went undrafted after looking just so-so at wide receiver at the East-West Shrine Game. But Gardner doesn't quite have Miller's natural playmaking skills. Miller will obviously be raw as a route runner, and his use may be limited. But it's a start to something that could make him a legit NFL player.

In this year's draft, 28 wide receivers were selected. At 6'2 and 215 pounds, teams will like Miller's size and potential enough to at least take a chance on him on the draft's third day.

Miller will be the latest in a growing line of quarterbacks turned wide receiver. At Kent State, Julian Edelman was an average quarterback who has turned himself into Tom Brady's go-to receiver. Josh Cribbs also played quarterback at Kent and become a serviceable wide receiver and a Pro Bowl return specialist. Antwaan Randle El and Brad Smith also successfully made the switch.

All of those players stuck at quarterback for their entire college career. One who didn't was Hines Ward, who played some quarterback at Georgia but was more known as a receiver and all-purpose threat. Obviously for Miller, having a potential Hall of Fame career like Ward is the ideal.

Of course, this is all assuming that Miller can actually catch the ball, something we've never seen him do in a game.