Chris Godwin, Penn State
Arm: 31 5/8″
Hand: 9 1/8″
NFL Comparison: Nate Burleson, Allen Robinson, Jarvis Landry
– finds ways to get open and snake his way into soft spots in zones and coverages a la Jarvis Landry; doesn’t necessarily seem to play with the functional speed of a 4.42 guy who relies on acceleration and burst to get open
– excellent concentration; seems to show examples in every game reviewed of catching footballs that shouldn’t be caught and getting in position to unlikely plays on them
– surprising ability for a WR who is not necessarily a “big” X-threat (and who doesn’t have overly large hands or long arms) to sniff out the football in contested situations and come down with it – again, reminds you of a faster, taller Jarvis Landry in this way as a bit of a junkyard dog
– extremely slow out of his stance and upfield to stalk-block; is oftentimes ineffective for this reason; seems more engaged and interested in crack-down blocks
– not a consistently natural hands-catcher or elite snatcher of the football in space; still, shows a unique and noticeable ability to locate the football and go get it, sometimes seeming to will the completion to happen; unlike some other prospects who make everything look effortless, Godwin’s tape gives the idea his effectiveness comes a bit more through hard work and concentration (as a receiver)
– as a ball-carrier after-catch, Godwin can do damage; the 4.42 speed shows up most on tape when he can get upfield undeterred, but he’s also elusive in his moves coupled with power post-catch – it’s in this phase where we see functional use of the attributes looked for in the shuttle drills, and also, functional use of strength through the upper body and core displayed by his impressive 19 reps on the bench press (2nd among WRs at the combine); excellent in breaking tackles, staying upright and restarting through traffic
– finished a pedestrian but respectable No. 20 (of 52) in our WR on-field performance scores from route-running drills in Indianapolis at the 2017 NFL combine
– does not show the twitch and change-of-direction skills functionally that might be expected with elite explosive agility metrics from the combine in the shuttle-drills
– outside of the strong 40-time in Indy, also had the best short shuttle of all wide receivers and good showings in the vertical (36″) and the broad jump (10’6″)
– showed up in the big moments for Penn State during college, owns the Penn State all-time record for receiving yards in bowl games, even only having attended school there for three years
Fantasy Outlook: After extensive review of Godwin’s 2016 film, I still find him somewhat of an enigma. Here’s a guy who’s best attributes seem to be his strength and physical nature, both at the catch point and after-catch. For a 6’1″ player with small hands, short arms and pretty blazing speed test-wise, that just doesn’t seem to add up. His best on-field reps at the combine were in the gauntlet which shows positioning, flexibility through the core, ability to frame and concentration more than it does any explosive traits used to separate through a route.
Godwin seems to will plays into being with his concentration and attention to detail more than he does with any of his natural physical gifts. I’m sure NFL teams were very surprised with the 4.42 number in Indy. It forces you to wonder: what if Godwin wasn’t utilized in ways at Penn State that might have showcased some of his dynamic speed and natural athleticism? Then you have a guy who’s exhibited loads of other great traits to complement that yet-somewhat-untapped athleticism, which clearly lends to the idea that this is a prospect with real upside.
His landing spot will be key, but based on testing numbers, attributes shown on film and college production, Godwin should probably be on our radars as a Top 10 WR prospect in a deep draft for above-average talent despite lacking star power at the top. For now, we’re comfortable using an early-to-mid 2nd round pick on Godwin in early dynasty drafts. When finding out his NFL landing spot, that projection could easily move in either direction.
Is tied for No. 4 on the career touchdown receptions chart with Derek Moye (2008-11) at 18 scoring grabs in three seasons…Is the eighth player in PSU history to eclipse 2,000 career receiving yards…Ranks No. 4 on the career receiving yards list with 2,404 yards…Sits No. 7 on the career receptions charts (153)…Is one of 14 players to eclipse the 100 career catch mark, joining teammate DaeSean Hamilton and current assistant coach Terry Smith (108; 1989-91)…Godwin and Hamilton are just the second set of teammates with 100-plus career receptions, joining Derrick Williams, Jordan Norwood and Deon Butler (2005-08)…Owns nine career 100-yard receiving games, with three in 2016, five coming in 2015 and the other coming against Boston College in the 2014 New Era Pinstripe Bowl…Has at least one catch in 38 of 40 career games, including a stretch of 19-straight games with from 2014-16…Made four or more grabs in 21 of his last 28 games dating back to 2014…Became just the third Penn State wide receiver (Bobby Engram, Allen Robinson) to eclipse the 1,000-yard mark in a single season, finishing second on the season receiving yards list with 1,101 yards…Finished fourth on the Penn State season receptions list with 69 in 2015…In three bowl games, owns the Penn State record for career receiving yardage (460 yards), receptions (22) and receiving touchdowns (4)…Owns the Penn State single game bowl record for receiving yards (187) and receptions (9), while tying Bobby Engram’s mark with two touchdown receptions vs. USC in the 2017 Rose Bowl…Also ranks third (140; 2014 Pinstripe Bowl) and fourth (133; 2016 TaxSlayer Bowl) in individual bowl game receiving yardage.
Quotable From the Combine
(Your HS coach (Middletown DE Mark DelPercio) calls you the perfect combination of talent and humility; where does humility come from?)
Honestly, I think it comes from my parents. Early on in my life, they really instilled in me about being humble and being appreciative of everything I have and understanding that the talent I do have is God-given and it can be taken away at any moment. I’m very blessed with the talent that I have and the surrounding people that I have in my life to help me get to this point.
(HS coach also says you’re best football player to come out of state of Delaware. When hear that, what goes through your mind?)
It’s awesome. Obviously, Delaware is a really small state. But we’ve had a lot of really good players come out of the state, a lot of really talented players. You just have to do a little more digging. For him to say that, with all the experience that he’s had, it means the world to me.
(What happened to you the night before the Rose Bowl?)
It was actually pretty funny. I don’t know if I ate something weird or what happened, but I got really sick. I was throwing up all night. Leading into the morning of the game, I was still throwing up. I was having stomach problems and things of that nature all the way up until the game. I just felt really uneasy. For me to have that game (9 rec., 187 yds, 2 TDs) was kind of surprising to me.
(Ever think about not playing in the Rose Bowl?)
Not at all. I’m a team-first guy. Anything I can do to help my team, whether I’m feeling bad or not, that’s what I’m going to do. I was trying to pound fluids as much as I could before the game.
(What was it like working out with Calvin Johnson and how did it come about?)
It was amazing. As you guys know, Calvin is a great guy and he had a great career. He’s just as he appears on TV. He’s a very calm and collected individual, but he’s very smart in what he does. I actually got in touch with him through my agent. He came down to Pensacola to train with me on the field and we also did some stuff in the classroom. It was a great experience. I learned a lot of things from that guy. I was just mainly trying to pick his brain from everything in the classroom to training regimen to just how to get open and how to create separation in the NFL.
(Would you have declared early for draft even if you didn’t have such a good Rose Bowl game?)
I feel like I would have. I had been contemplating it, leading up to the Bowl game. Not one game is going to make or break your decision to when it comes to declaring for the NFL. It definitely was a good note to go out on, and I’m very thankful to the people who played a role in getting me to that point.
(What do you want the teams, coaches to know about you in interviews?)
Mainly just knowing who I am as a person. Just knowing the humble guy that I am, the hard worker that I am. That’s one of the main things. I take a lot of pride in my work ethic. If they draft me, they’re going to get a guy who’s going to come in and work hard every day.
(Tough leaving Penn State even though probable favorites to repeat as Big 10 champs?)
It was incredibly difficult. It was arguably one of the more difficult things I had to do in my life. Not only because of the potential for next year, but those are my brothers. We’ve been through so much over the past three years. We had fought through so much adversity. We had a really successful year. Above all, they’re my brothers and I’m going to miss them, but I’m not worried about their success next year. I have all the faith in the world in their abilities.
(Where do you think you’re slotted in this draft?)
That’s not really for me to decide. I like to control the controllable, and that’s me coming in every day and working hard on what I can improve on. I feel like at the end of the day, I’ll do what I can do, and control what I can control, and everything else will take care of itself.
(Strengths that you think will translate to NFL?)
Mainly, that I’m an all-around receiver. I’m not afraid to do the dirty work. I’m not afraid to block. I take a lot of pride in blocking, in being at the right place at the right time, making contested catches and things that I’ve proven that I can do in my college career.
(In HS, did you think that the NFL was possible?)
In high school, it was still a dream. In high school, I was mainly worried about playing in college, doing what I could do to be effective at Penn State. That was the biggest thing on my mind. As my career started to develop at Penn State, I saw it as having an opportunity for something later down the road. It’s definitely a blessing to be in this position.
(You do well in film knowledge, did you show that in interviews?)
We really talk football, talk a couple of plays, and after, I think I did really well. I think that’s somewhere I can separate myself. That’s definitely I work on every day, just being a student of the game. A lot of teams said I did a great job. It remains to be seen how much that helps me down the road.
(Secret on making highlight-reel catches?)
It’s not really a secret. It takes a lot of practice, a lot of hours of hard work practicing your ball drills and just anticipation.
(Growing up just outside Philly (in Delaware), did you follow the Eagles?)
Yes, I did. A lot of my family are Eagles fans, being from Philadelphia. Growing up, I followed the Eagles, as well as other teams. In high school, I really became a fan of the game.
(Where in Philly is your family from?)
(In Rose Bowl, you were in tears on the field after the game, why?)
Mainly because we put so much into it. Over the past three seasons, we fought through so much adversity. We’ve been through the ups and downs. For us to really bring Penn State back to national prominence and put on the performance that we did in the Rose Bowl and then come up short, and our last offensive play came in my direction and I couldn’t make the play [the ball was intercepted] for my team, it hurt me because I felt personally responsible for us not winning that game.