At the NFL Scouting Combine, there stood a large burley man with a trimmed beard, wearing a charcoal gray hoodie through the the huge letters “TE” inscribed. He humbly called the press: “I’m down to play for anybody girlfriend know, whoever is willing to provide me the opportunity.” He synthetic up his game in one sentence, uttering the indigenous “versatility,” “catching,” and “running” together. This young guy is phibìc Carolina State’s Jaylen Samuels, a multi-faceted attack weapon who played football because that the Wolfpack. N.C. State recruited JaySam as a chop end, however, he was mainly a slot receiver. At the an elderly Bowl in January, he was noted as a running back. Two months later, he uncovered himself thrown in with the tight ends at the 2018 NFL integrate which surprised many. It to be at the combine where Samuels confirmed one thing for sure, that he is an NFL-caliber athlete based on advanced stats, metrics, and analytics player profiles.

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As the NFL breeze approaches, the concerns looms… who is Jaylen Samuels? and is the a chop end, a slot receiver, or running back?

College Career

Freshman Year

In his student in the first year year, Jaylen Samuels was 6-feet tall and also 240 pounds and had Jacoby Brissett together his quarterback. He to be a tight end, though he spent much more time in the backfield. Samuels just touched the round twenty-one time in complete that year, but when that did, he made the most of his opportunity. He lugged the ball fifteen times, averaging 9.5 yards per rushing attempt and also had six receptions, averaging 16 yards a catch. It is a very little sample size yet it was a sign that Samuels can do a lot as soon as he got the ball.

Sophomore Year

As a sophomore, Jaylen Samuels witnessed a significant increase in usage. He was again that Swiss army knife, playing miscellaneous roles. That rushed because that 368 yards ~ above 56 attempts, averaging a solid 6.6 yards every attempt. Quiet weighing in at 240, he to be the “big back”, scoring ripe touchdowns. To put it right into perspective, that is a touchdown every 6.2 carries, i m sorry is entirely insane. What is even an ext insane is he still average 6.6 yards regardless of getting many goal line carries. As a happen catcher, however, Samuels to be busier. He had an impressive 65 captures for 597 yards, for one more seven touchdowns. He was Brissett’s favourite target, and also was head and shoulders over the rest of the team in targets. The 2nd most targeted receiver captured only 34 balls. What was many impressive that year to be Samuels scored sixteen touchdowns, the many on the team.

Samuels was arising as a receiver and as the bruising goal line ago who might find the finish zone. NC State shed to Dak Prescott‘s Mississippi State in the Belk Bowl, but Samuels scored double in his final game the the season, both as a to run back. One to be his usual goal heat TD score, yet the other one was a 48-yard scamper on fourth and 1 that clearly exhibited his speed and also elusiveness.

Junior Year

Something occurred in Jaylen Samuels‘ small year. Regardless of playing every game, his usage went down. However, his production was generally still the same. Samuels still average 5.7 yards per carry; he still gained the most receptions (55); he still scored 13 times. However, this was supposed to it is in his breakout year and also it never happened. This to be partially as result of the fact that that was dealing with several various nagging injuries – nothing that retained him turn off the field yet it did affect his as whole usage and his ability to gain open as a receiver. As for to run the ball, coach Dave Doeren wanted to use an elderly Matthew Dayes, that out-touched Samuels 249 to 33.

Senior Year

Despite having actually a disappointing small year, Jaylen Samuels to be voted by his team members to wear number-1 jersey, which is a large deal in ~ NC State. It method many thought about him the team’s leader. Coach Doeren was happy to do Samuels the leader since “JaySam shows up every day with the same work ethic, the exact same attitude and also the very same effort and also he is great leader because that our team.” and it was just the point Samuels needed. Put on number-1 did make a difference since it to be Samuel’s ideal year in numerous ways since he was much more involved. His attack snap share boosted from 55-percent in 2016 to 73-percent in 2017. In the offseason, Samuels reduce fifteen pounds and came ago to school an ext svelte. At six-feet tall, and weighing in at 225, he definitely looks much more like a to run back. Despite his new frame, that was generally a slot receiver. He played this position 64-percent of the time, whereas he inside wall up together a running back/half back around 27-percent the the time. What is interesting to keep in mind is his tiny usage as a tight end, only lining up as one twenty-one times every season (3-percent) together Joe Giglio, from phibìc Carolina’s the News & Observer points the end above. And also this is no an anomaly – in 2016 he played tight end even less at 1.5-percent.


Samuel’s 2017 Pitch counting courtesy that Joe Giglio, writer for News & Observer


Although Jaylen Samuels‘ volume raised in his senior year, it was not his ideal season statistically. He caught an ext passes (76 receptions), which placed him as N.C. State’s all-time receptions leader. However he just averaged 7.9 yards every reception. He brought the sphere 77 times and also averaged 5.2 yards every carry, which to be his lowest median at college. However, Samuels continued to overcome where that mattered most – touchdowns. He score the many touchdowns ~ above his team for the 3rd consecutive season, recognize the finish zone sixteen times, twelve together a runner and also four as a receiver. What ongoing to be the impressive stat around Samuels was his touchdown to lug rate. He scored a touchdown because that every 6.4 carries. Every in all, Samuels has been a better, much more efficient running back than a receiver yet being able to both run and catch have the right to only occupational to his advantage as a prospect.

Although that played mainly as a slot receiver, he simply isn’t built like one. He is too large and slow-moving to develop the crucial separation in the NFL. And also there is no possibility he will certainly make it as a tight end either. Contrasted to the towering chop ends favor Rob Gronkowski, Travis Kelce and Zach Ertz, Samuels is simply too short and also slight. Therefore, Samuels should go into the draft together a running back. His size points in the direction and despite never ever being a function back, his effective college stats do too.

Workout Metrics & Player Comparisons

Jaylen Samuels had actually a kind 2018 NFL Combine, however is by no way an upstream athlete. That ran a 4.54 40-yard dash, which equals a 105.9 rate Score (80th-percentile among NFL running backs). He included an 11.21 Agility Score (68th-percentile), demonstrating excellent size-adjusted lateral quickness. Even his 119.2 to explode Score was above the NFL RB average.


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Jaylen Samuels progressed Stats & Metrics Profile


Although Player Profiler has existing NFL free agent Marcel Reece together his best comparable player, Reece went undrafted, is a at this time a free agent, and has not really excellent anything significant in the NFL. A an ext relevant player that draws parallels come Jaylen Samuels is Jordan Howard. Both room the same height with Howard slightly more heavier at 230-pounds. Samuels edges Howard slightly in 3 categories – speed Score, to explode Score and also Bench Press. The metric the Samuels quickly prevails over Howard is his Agility Score. This way he is more likely to evade tackles and also get an ext yards before contact. In spite of lacking agility, Howard has actually been fairly successful in the NFL in ~ evading tackles. He has actually ranked as the 14th-best running back at evading tackles for two years in a row, i beg your pardon is hopeful news because that potential Samuels suitors.

Check the end Jaylen Samuels ~ above the tastecraftedmcd.com’s Rookie Rankings:

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Howard might only be an mean athlete but has done well at what the does – a solid and also consistent between the tackles grinder for the Chicago Bears. Jaylen Samuels have the right to be Jordan Howard however with catching ability. Howard’s university target share got to an abysmal 4.2-percent (15th-percentile) vice versa, Samuels to be a prolific receiver, confirmed by a 20.2-percent university target share (97th-percentile). NFL teams and also dynasty owners have to be careful however. Unlike Howard, who has actually a respectable 62nd-percentile college Dominator Rating, Samuels was usurped top top NC State’s running depth graph by Nyheim Hines, who currently ranks in the top-10 top top tastecraftedmcd.com’s Rookie Rankings. Howard has always been a feature back, conversely, Samuels is never ever been one. Some will certainly be unconvinced of Samuels, believing the won’t make an impact in the NFL because he was never a true primary back in college. Then again, neither to be Alvin Kamara, and he has been O-K the NFL for this reason far.

Best Potential Landing Spot

Jaylen Samuels has actually the potential to it is in a three-down workhorse because of his size and versatility, or a score line ago at a minimum. The could also concentrate on what he has done the most in college and also be a larger pass catching threat who can line up almost everywhere in the field. This absence of identity could not be viewed as a trouble at all yet could occupational to Samuels’ advantage. Therefore, that isn’t together dependent ~ above a landing spot together one could think. Together a energy player the will uncover somewhere wherein he can uncover his niche and he might never have to leave north Carolina come do just that. The Panthers, who currently have a great pass-catching satellite earlier like Christian McCaffrey might replace J Stew (Jonathan Stewart) with JaySam. Samuels could be the cost-free bigger bruising earlier who can get goal line carries and catch a few passes from time come time.

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Regardless, whoever ends up taking Jaylen Samuels in among the later on rounds of the rookie draft can stumble ~ above a bargain. Due to the fact that of his size and also adaptability, Samuels could be that concealed gem the 2018 that could be a difference device on one NFL team and also someone’s empire roster. Samuels is a running ago who is certainly the jack of all trades however could be the master of all.