In my coverage of the 2020 NFL draft, I mentioned that the Raiders potentially put themselves in position to be criticized by selecting Henry Ruggs III with the No. 12 overall pick over Alabama teammate Jerry Jeudy and Oklahoma’s CeeDee Lamb.
By most scouts’ accounts, Lamb and Jeudy were considered the top receivers in the draft with Ruggs right behind them. They were the clear top three receivers in one of the strongest classes at the position in recent memory. In a surprise, the Raiders took Ruggs at No. 12, Jeudy then went to AFC West rival Denver Broncos at No, 15 and the Dallas Cowboys took Lamb two picks later.
If either of the other two receivers — especially Jeudy since he plays in the AFC West, turns out to be bigger impact players than Ruggs — the Raiders will forever hear about it. But they know the risks. They feel Ruggs is best suited for their offense so, that’s fine, let’s see how it plays out.
This week, three months before the season starts, the “Jeudy over Ruggs” chatter has already begun for a stupid reason. Jeudy released a video on Twitter that shows his sublime foot work. It is truly impressive. Route running is Jeudy’s calling card and it is displayed loud and clear in this video. Of course, it was noticed Check out these Twitter reactions:
Ruggs over Jeudy may be talked about in the AFC West for a looong time, a take I will support with this summer training video. https://t.co/KMoHmEo0zL— Gregg Rosenthal (@greggrosenthal) June 12, 2020
Alabama fans:— Jim Nagy (@JimNagy_SB) June 12, 2020
GM’s that passed on Jeudy:
Fanbases wanted Jeudy:
AFC West CB’s:
Jerry Jeudy: https://t.co/H25TVJP4W3
I respect both Greg and Jim. But it’s a little overboard and premature to even talk about Jeudy in terms of NFL greatness based on a practice-field video. Yes, Jeudy’s video was nothing short of footwork porn (settle down, Rex Ryan) , but that doesn’t mean he’s going to be a better player than Ruggs. He can release his own video displaying his unreal 4.27 speed, blowing by defenders to get folks excited if he wishes.
The truth is both Ruggs and Jeudy are top-level prospects. If Jeudy ends up being better than Ruggs, the Raiders will have to live with their mistake. But to be worried that the pick may already be a mistake is misguided and simply not true.