November 02, 2012; Berkeley, CA, USA; Injured California Golden Bears wide receiver Keenan Allen (21) leaves the field at half time against the Washington Huskies at Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-US PRESSWIRE
Top wide receiver prospect has officially been ruled out for the rest of his junior season after suffering a knee injury on a failed onside kick attempt this week.
Allen came into the year with many expecting to compete and easily grab the number one slot at the wide receiver position. Allen was very solid, but he certainly didn’t put up the kind of performance that many expected from the highly touted prospect.
Allen will finish the year with 61 catches for 737 yards and six touchdowns. The rest of his offense was very dysfunctional and Allen faced bracket coverage for most of the season.
Allen’s positives are all still there. He has decent size; he should measure in at around 6’2″ 210 pounds. He has solid athleticism and will probably run in the low 4.5’s. He is an extremely fluid athlete and knows how to use his body in the short range of the field. He hasn’t faced the jam very much, but he does not shy away from contact.
Allen certainly looks the part, and he has a lot of great qualities, but do they really justify a top 15 pick? I don’t think he has the game-breaking potential that you like in an early-pick wide receiver. He doesn’t have the size to out-position DB’s in the short game as effectively as he can at the college level. He doesn’t really have the speed to keep corners off the line of scrimmage and I don’t think he is going to command safety assistance like he does at Cal.
His fluidity and quickness are what make him stand out. He isn’t the fastest guy but he gets up to speed very quickly and changes direction effortlessly. It really is impressive how well he moves.
The injury shouldn’t have any ramifications on his draft stock. It seems to be in the line of a PCL strain which is a 2-4 week recovery.
I am still torn when I watch Keenan Allen. I see an effortless athlete who catches the ball away from his body and is excellent at shielding away corners. I just worry that his skills won’t stand out enough at the NFL level, or provide the upside that you expect from a receiver drafted that high. He is a guy I will be spending a lot of time looking at this offseason.