Florida football sends a talented wide receiver to Denver, a team heavily involved in an arms race. So, where does this Gator fit into the mix?
Florida football lost another player to this year’s draft, and this time it’s über talented wide receiver Tyrie Cleveland.
Tyrie Cleveland is a big strong down the field threat. He’s 6-foot-2 and weighs 205 pounds. While playing for Florida football, he averaged 16.1 yards per reception. Contested receptions were easier for Cleveland because of his 78-inch wingspan.
In fact, Tyrie Cleveland struggled at times when the ball was delivered in his breadbasket. His lack of concentration when being left wide-open is baffling. But this isn’t who he is.
This product of Florida football is a bomb-catcher! He owns 50/50 balls at a rate closer to 70 percent. His wide frame makes him an asset on the field in the run game.
It’s catches like the ones seen above coupled with his 4.46-second 40-yard dash time that got Denver Broncos General Manager John Elway to pull the trigger and draft Cleveland, not for what he is, but what he could become.
Bang for the buck
Does Tyrie Cleveland offer enough up-side at pick 252 in the seventh round?
He’ll be able to contribute right away as a gunner on special teams. The Denver Broncos special teams unit ranked 24th in the NFL last season. Cleveland’s speed and strength should immediately improve them.
While at Florida he showcased a raw, natural talent; the type that you might see in a wild horse, but like a wild horse, he’ll need some professional work. Once he gets up to speed with the language of the offense, he will be able to kill teams down the middle.
The Denver Broncos were able to grab a wild talent from Florida football with a late-round pick knowing he’ll provide instant athleticism to their special teams. They are hoping he provides big-time plays for the Bronco faithful to wrap their arms around.
The Denver Broncos let everyone know early in the 2020 draft that they were adding talent to the offense. They kicked off the draft by taking wide receiver Jerry Jeudy from Alabama and followed that up by drafting KJ Hamler, another wide receiver from Penn State.
Besides the two receivers Denver took in the first two rounds, they already possess a stable of talent at that skill position.
They had no need to add another receiver, yet they did. Tyrie Cleveland could not be passed up in the seventh round. He has too much up-side. He’s the type of player that ends up in New England and everyone wonders how the rich got richer.
Cleveland has all the physical tools to become a very good wide receiver in the NFL. His two areas of concern for me are consistency and route running. They are the reasons why he didn’t dominate at Florida, and they will keep him handcuffed to special teams.
Vic Fangio is an old-school, no-nonsense coach. He believes in all the old philosophies.
As long as Cleveland works hard and puts in the time, I see no reason he can’t find a role in this Bronco’s attack. Final grade: B-