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Recruiting: NFL Comps for Miami’s top 247Sports Commits

NFL Comps for top Miami Hurricanes Commits in 247Sports final 247

Category 2020
Miami Athletics

A week before National Signing Day, 247Sports.com released their final 247 rankings as the 2020 recruiting season comes to a close. This list of 247 is, as you may imagine, made up of the top 247 players in the 2020 recruiting cycle per 247sports rankings.

The Miami Hurricanes were able to secure commits (so far) from a total of 10 four star commits, 4 more than the 2019 class. 5 of those athletes were ranked in the 247sports top 247. Those five, in order from lowest to highest 247 rank (composite in parenthesis as aggregate of top three recruiting sites 247, ESPN and Rivals):

Four Star Jalen Rivers - Ranked 221st in 247 (127th Composite)

Four Star Jaylan Knighton - Ranked 138th (105th Composite)

Four Star Avantae Williams - Ranked 93rd (44th Composite)

Four Star Chantz Williams - Ranked 84th (also 84th Composite)

Four Star Don Chaney Jr. - Ranked 73rd (114th Composite)

It should be no surprise that these 5 stand as arguably the most gifted players in our recruiting class. But just how gifted? No discussion around talent and projection in high school athletes would be complete without a few healthy NFL comparisons.

In this practice I chose to leave out Rivers only because for this practice strength numbers weren’t readily available. Also, non-OL testing numbers are more favorably compared at these positions. Using Mockdraftable.com you can easily dive into a database and compare thousands of testing numbers for many of the NFL players with NFL Combine or Pro Day from the last 20 years.

For the ProCanes displays, I used the incredible proprietary Relative Athletic Score cards, created by Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) of PrideofDetroit.com and relativeathleticscores.com Incredible work from Kent!

For the players above I dug into the archives of various players in this database. What I chose to present of my findings are:

The closest possible comparison w/ short bio

The closest high profile comparison w /short bio

The closest Hurricane alumni comparison w/o bio

The last comp I chose not to include a bio to avoid a TL:DR article and because, quite frankly, U already know.

Jaylan Knighton

Deerfield Beach High School - Four Star - Ranked 138th (105th Composite)

Recruiting Profile

All Purpose Back - 5’9 194 lbs

40-yard dash time: 4.49 seconds

Shuttle time: 4.26 seconds

Vertical jump: 32.9 inches

Jaylan Knighton is an incredible athlete out of Deerfield Beach High School. He regularly showcased a well rounded skill set. He can get to the edge and out run you. He can be patient to find the holes created by his offensive line. When necessary he can lower his shoulder, break a tackle and fight for the extra yardage. Finding a good comp for Knighton was slightly difficult because his skill set is more regularly found in a scat back, rather than one his size.

The closest possible comparison

Deandra’ Cobb (5’9.5, 197lbs, 4.49 40, 4.26 suttle, 34” Vert)

Deandra’ Cobb was a running back for the Michigan State Spartans from 2001 to 2005. Similar to Knighton, Cobb was an explosive athlete and matched with him at the 40, shuttle and vertical jump. Though he featured only pedestrian numbers at RB during his time at MSU (900 rushing yards, 4 tds) it was in the return game where his talents exploded. He earned First-Team All American at Kick Returner for his Junior Year with 3 kick returns for TD and a 27 yard return average. He would be drafted in the 6th round by the Atlanta Falcons in 2005.

The closest high profile comparison

Steve Slaton (5’9, 197lbs, 4.45 40, 4.27 suttle, 33.5” Vert)

Steve Slaton was the most exciting comparison I settled on for Jaylan Knighton. These players had very close testing numbers and both show excellent vision, break away speed and pack a punch in a smaller frame. Slaton also played in a spread offense similar to what Knighton will play in at Miami. That allowed him to rush for at least 1100 yards and 16 TDs a year. Slaton was drafted in the 3rd round of the 2008 Draft by the Houston Texans.

The closest Miami Hurricane alumni comparison

Travis Homer - 5’10, 201lbs, 4.48 40, 4.31 shuttle, 39.5” Vert

https://relativeathleticscores.com/2020/01/24/travis-homer-ras/
Travis Homer
Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) of https://relativeathleticscores.com

Avantae Williams

Deland High School - Four Star - Ranked 93rd (44th Composite)

Recruiting Profile

Safety - 5’11 170lbs

40-yard dash time: 4.52 seconds

Shuttle time: 4.25 seconds

Vertical Jump: 36.20 inches

I gladly made the addition to this list as Avantae Williams spurned the Rival Florida Gators to join the Miami Hurricanes safety room (Turn Up!!!)

Williams is an exceptional athlete at the safety position. However, he is a player definitely better than his already stand out testing numbers. One look at his film, where he is seen frequently playing offense (running back), defense and in the return game, Williams displays a 3rd gear when in space, a flair for big plays as ball hawk and returner, and a penchant to put his head down and take a man down. By the numbers Williams has an elite testing set at a storied position for the Miami Hurricanes.

The closest possible comparison

Shawn Williams (5’11, 213lbs, 4.46 40, 4.25 shuttle, 36” Vert)

Shawn Williams played for Mark Richt’s Georgia Bulldogs (2009-2012) and was similarly recruited by him as Williams was at the University of Miami. A leader on the Georgia defense, Williams was 4 year starter totaling 209 tackles and 4 interceptions, all during the 2011 season. Following his senior season in 2012, Williams was drafted by the Cincinnati Bengals in the 3rd Rd of the 2013 draft. Williams has been an impactful player for Bengals since being drafted and signed a $20 million dollar contract to stay with the Bengals in 2016.

The closest high profile comparison

Patrick Chung (5’11, 212lbs, 4.49 40, 4.24 shuttle, 34”Vert)

Known most as a leader to 3 championship defenses for Bill Belichick and the New England Patriots, Chung was first a Freshman All American and 2 time All American for the Oregon Ducks from 2004-2008. The Native Jamaican also holds the record for the Oregon Ducks for most defensive starts at 51. Chung is still active on the Patriots defense as an 11 year veteran after being drafted by the Patriots in the 2nd Rd of the 2009 NFL Draft.

The closest Hurricane alumni comparison

Antrel Rolle - 6’0, 198lbs, 4.48 40, 4.01 shuttle, 37” Vert

Chantz Williams

Oakleaf High School - Four Star - Ranked 84th (also 84th Composite)

Recruiting Profile

Defensive End - 6’4 238 lbs

40-yard dash time: 4.56 seconds

Shuttle time: 4.49 seconds

Vertical jump: 35.9 inches

Chantz Williams is special. It may be truly hard to believe, but Miami has never had a starter at the Edge rusher spot with the testing numbers he displayed in the off season. Olivier Vernon, Chad Thomas, Jerome McDougle, Greg Rousseau. Nope, nope, nope and nope. His get off is ELITE and he has the ability to beat ANY tackle or would be blocker in a booth with a his short area ability. As you will find below, the closest former Cane was Allen Bailey, who was a converted LB at the edge. And the 40’s are still off by TWO tenths of second. Sheesh. A dual sport athlete, the thought of Chantz focusing solely on football and being an EE should have Canes fans very excited for a what will be possibly the best defensive line in the country. Check out that write by Dylan Sherry folks.

The closest possible comparison

Justin Hollins (6’5, 248lbs, 4.5 40, 4.45 shuttle, 36.5” Vert)

It was almost as hard to find a good comp among the past 20 years of talent from the Edge spot in NCAAF as it was among Canes legends. The closest possible comp is Justin Hollins, a converted linebacker for the Oregon Ducks from 2014-2018. He used his talents to total 36 tackles for loss and 14 sacks for the Ducks. He was selected during last years draft in the 5th round by the Denver Broncos.

The closest high profile comparison

Alvin Dupree (6’4, 269lbs, 4.56 40, 4.48 shuttle, 42”Vert)

As a Pittsburgh native, I would have cringed at this choice before this past season, but Dupree put it all together (in a contract year, of course) to tally 16 TFL and 11 sacks playing across All Pro T.J. Watt. During his time as a Kentucky Wildcat from 2011-2014, Dupree terrorized the SEC all four years to the tune of 247 total tackles, 39.5 for loss and 25.5 in the form of sacks. He turned that production into a First round selection to the Pittburgh Steelers in 2015.

The closest Hurricane alumni comparison(s)

I struggled here due to Williams unique skill set not truly matching any one Cane. To offset, I used TWO Canes, Allen Bailey who was a positional comp and D.J. Williams who was a comp strictly for explosiveness.

Allen Bailey - 6’3, 285lbs, 4.71 40, 4.56 shuttle, 36.5 Vert

Allen Bailey
Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) of https://relativeathleticscores.com/

D.J. Williams - 6’0, 250lbs, 4.55 40, 4.05 shuttle, 38” Vert)

D.J. Williams
Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) of https://relativeathleticscores.com/

Don Chaney Jr.

Belen Jesuit High School - Four Star - Ranked 73rd (114th Composite)

Recruiting Profile

Running Back - 5’10.5 203 lbs

40-yard dash time: 4.40 seconds

Shuttle time: 4.16 seconds

Vertical jump: 39.2 inches

The prized recruit of Miami’s 2020 class, Don Chaney Jr. has done nothing but impress everywhere he has gone. Camps? Dominant. Season? Dominant? Track? Dominant. Loyalty to the U? Duke Johnson-esque. Despite overtures from nearly every major school in the country, the Belen Jesuit High School star never wavered on his commitment to Miami.

The top recruit on this list, Chaney Jr. recently was the topic of much discussion when he was left off of Rivals final 300 list COMPLETELY. As you might imagine, Canes fans everywhere were very much up in arms at the egregious omission from Rivals, and rightfully so. But unfortunately, its almost become expected to receive a ratings decrease when committed to Miami, but I digress.

Chaney is a blend of back shaped from the tradition of Hurricanes backs like McGahee, Highsmith and Johnson, displaying a powerful running style with low 4.4 speed and excellent vision. It is expected he will join a long line of Miami RBs to enjoy a solid NFL career at minimum.

The closest possible comparison

Jerick McKinnon (5’9, 209lbs, 4.41 40, 4.12 shuttle, 40” Vert)

A Four year letterman at Georgia Southern, McKinnon was a record setting FCS player third all time on the FCS rushing yards list at 3,889 yards and third highest single season with 1817 yards. He regularly played both out of the running back and quarterback spot, and was main reason the Eagles upset the Florida Gators in 2013, the last time a member of the big three lost to an FCS school. That means we can rebound y’all. McKinnon was drafted in the 3rd round of the 2014 draft by the Minnesota Vikingds and signed a 4 year, $30 million contract to join the 2019 Super Bowl contender San Francisco 49ers.

The closest high profile comparison

LaDanian Tomlinson (5’10, 221lbs, 4.46lbs, 4.21 shuttle, 40.5” Vert)

Hey Rivals, you left off a player that compares favorably to LaDanian Tomlinson’s, just saying.

Without going to far into what is a Hall of Fame career, the former San Diego Chargers and New York Jets star running back was the leading back in the NFL for the majority of his career. He finished his career with 13,684 rushing yards, 4772 receiving yards and 162 total TDs. Beast mode.

Other comps include Kevin Jones of Virginia Tech and Cadillac Williams of Auburn

The closest Hurricane alumni comparison

Lamar Miller - 5’11, 212lbs, 4.4 40, 4.08 shuttle , 33” Vert

Lamar Miller
Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) of https://relativeathleticscores.com/

BONUS!!!

I could not in good faith do a piece about athletic ability and NFL comparisons without including two class favorites in Michael Redding III out of IMG and Quentin Williams from Mallard Creek in North Carolina. It was last summer that these gentlemen burst on to the scene and made some noise posting some incredible numbers and dominate camp displays.

Michael Redding III

IMG Academy - Four Star - Ranked 321st (178th Composite)

Recruiting Profile

Wide Receiver - 6’1 - 195 lbs

40-yard dash time: 4.49 seconds

Shuttle time: 4.33 seconds

Vertical jump: 41.4 inches

—————————————————————————

The highest profile comparison

Larry Fitzgerald - Pitt- (6’2, 225lbs, 4.48 40, 4.28 shuttle, 38” Vert) - ARI - 1st Rd - 2004

The closest Hurricane alumni comparison

Leonard Hankerson (6’1, 209lbs, 4.53 40, 4.21 shuttle, 36” Vert) - MIN - 6th Rd - 2017

Leonard Hankerson
Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) of https://relativeathleticscores.com/

Quentin Williams

Mallard Creek High School - Three Star - 594th (673rd Composite)

Recruiting Profile

Defensive End - 6’3 - 234 lbs

40-yard dash time: 4.8 seconds

Shuttle time: 4.41 seconds

Vertical jump: 33.4 inches

————————————————————————-

The closest possible comparison

Charles Harris - Missouri - (6’3, 253lbs, 4.82 40, 4.42 shuttle, 32” Vert) - MIA - 1st Rd - 2017

The closest Hurricane alumni comparison

Olivier Vernon - 6’2, 261lbs, 4.80 40, 4.5 shuttle, 34.5 Vert”) - MIA - 3rd Rd - 2012

Olivier Vernon
Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) of https://relativeathleticscores.com/