2016 NFL Draft: 5 Best-Fit Prospects for Chip Kelly
San Francisco has a paucity of playmakers at the receiver position but could grab one who fits Kelly’s system in the second or third round in Oklahoma wideout Sterling Shepard.
Undersized at 5’10”, Shephard makes up for his small frame in a big way, boasting an all-round game that ranks among the best of all the receivers in this class.
Shepard has excellent hands, displaying the body control to make tough catches on the sideline, and it his dependability and proficiency in turning short passes into big gains that make him an attractive prospect who should slot seamlessly into Kelly’s offense.
The below play against TCU is a great example of Shepard’s ability to make yards after the catch, he snags the reception on a short hitch route, turns upfield and makes multiple defenders miss for a big gain.
Shortly after Shepard converts another short throw into a huge play, running a great route to the sideline and catching the ball before juking his way inside of a prospective tackler and eventually being brought down at midfield.
However, Shepard can also produce big plays on deep routes, such as this 39-yard touchdown against Baylor, where he gains a small amount of separation from the cornerback and tracks the ball over his head to make the catch and find the end zone.
A receiver who wins with his route-running and quick feet, Shepard has what it takes to become an elite wideout at the NFL level. The 49ers should not be deterred by his size and must take him if the opportunity to draft Shepard presents itself.
Next: Vernon Adams