Rookie Spotlight: Josh Palmer, Tennessee
Height: 6’ 2” (unofficial)
Weight: 210 lbs (unofficial)
40 yard dash: 4.5 (unofficial)
NFL Comparison: Kevin Norwood, Tyler Boyd
– good overall size
– adept at sideline catches
– contested catch specialist
– excellent body control
– physical route runner
– strong blocker
– suspect footwork
– plays high, hard time bursting out of cuts
College Production Score: .23
2020 Market Share Team Receptions: 18%
2020 Market Share Team Receiving Yards: 23%
2020 Market Share Team Receiving TDs: 29%
3-star recruit (2017) per 247 composite ranking
Scouting Notes: Palmer is a Canadian who has flourished in his time at Tennessee, where he played alongside the likes of Juaun Jennings and Marquez Calloway. Palmer is a chain mover who can go up and get the ball anywhere on the field – He’s especially adept at making tip-toe sideline catches. He’s got impressive body control for someone of his size and he’s physical enough to bring in contested catches with regularity. He brings that physicality into his blocking as well, a skill that will help him get onto the field in the pros. Palmer creates separation through that athleticism, but he’s a solid route runner as well – though his route tree isn’t extensive at this point. Palmer could use improvement with his footwork, and he plays too high for comfort – He’s going to have to learn to lower hips. That said, he knows how to get open, and often makes the catch even when he is not.
Fantasy Outlook: Noted by his teammates for his strong work ethic, Palmer is a big, strong athlete with good hands acure awareness on the field. He projects to be a possession receiver who could also be an asset in the red-zone, a la Tyler Boyd. He also has a bit of a big-play upside to him at the college level in an SEC program that didn’t necessarily coincide with the level of production you’d expect in the mold of a Kevin Norwood. He’s one of those guys who could sneak up on you in fantasy. He’s not the most dynamic player, so he’ll probably go undrafted until the later rounds, but he has an outside shot to be a team’s no.1 receiver in time. He’s well worth a flyer in Round 4 of dynasty rookie drafts until further information is gleaned. We’ll update the profile if more context is needed to be shared after getting to see Palmer live at the Senior Bowl.
2020 Preseason All-SEC Fourth Team (Athlon)
2019 Fall SEC Academic Honor Roll
2018-19 VOLeaders Academy Class
Explosive receiver in the midst of a solid senior season … Appeared in 46 games with 35 starts … Caught 96 passes for 1,459 yards and seven touchdowns … Also has one rushing score to his credit … 66 of his 96 catches have gone for a first down … Has 15 career catches of 25 or more yards … Came to Knoxville after outstanding prep career in Florida and prior to that grew up in Canada … A leader in the classroom and community as well.
2020 – SENIOR
Had 53 yards on four catches in win at Vanderbilt (12/12) … Had four catches for 36 yards vs. #6 Florida (12/5) … Had a team-high 28 receiving yards at Arkansas (11/7) … Hauled in four receptions for a team-high 57 yards and one TD against #2 Alabama (10/24) … Led UT in receiving for a third-straight week, hauling in four catches for 71 yards and a career-high two TDs at #3 Georgia (10/10) … Led UT in receiving for a second week in a row, collecting 71 yards on four receptions including a season-long 33-yard grab against Missouri (10/3) … Was UT’s leading receiver in season-opening win at South Carolina (9/26), tying a career high with six catches for 85 yards and scored the game-winning touchdown with a 32-yard reception in the fourth quarter.
2019 – JUNIOR
Made another leap in his third season on Rocky Top, finishing second on the Vols with 34 receptions to go along with 457 yards and one touchdown … Appeared in 13 games with 12 starts … Led Tennessee with a career-best-matching six receptions for 68 yards vs. Indiana in the 2020 TaxSlayer Gator Bowl (1/2) … Was outstanding at Missouri, grabbing six passes for a career-best 124 yards as Tennessee had three 100-yard receivers for the first time in school history and clinched bowl eligibility (11/23) … Pulled down his first receiving touchdown of the season in UT’s win over Kentucky (11/9), a 12-yarder in the third quarter that proved to be the game-winning score … Finished with four receptions for 55 yards against the Wildcats … Totaled five catches for 55 yards in win over South Carolina (10/26) … Pulled in a season-long 20-yard reception at No. 1 Alabama (10/19) … Had four catches for 56 yards vs. BYU (9/7) … Made three catches in season-opener vs. Georgia State (8/31).
2018 – SOPHOMORE
Emerged as one of the most explosive players on the Tennessee offense … Played in all 12 games with eight starts … Finished the season first in the SEC and tied for fifth in the nation in yards per catch (21.0) … Hauled in 23 catches and ranked second on the team with 484 receiving yards and two touchdowns while averaging 40.3 yards per game … Added five carries for 27 yards and a touchdown … Led the Vols with 10 20-yard plays … Capped season with two catches for 22 yards at Vanderbilt (11/24) … Had two catches for 23 yards against Missouri (11/17) … Had a team-high four catches for 71 yards and a touchdown in win over Charlotte (11/3) … Had one catch for 30 yards against No. 1 Alabama (10/20) … Had three catches for a career-high 84 yards in win at No. 21 Auburn (10/13) … Hauled in a 37-yard pass from Jarrett Guarantano for his first-career touchdown catch at No. 2 Georgia (9/29) … Had a career-long 53-yard reception and 64 receiving yards in win over UTEP (9/15) … Recorded his first-career rushing touchdown and had 51 yards receiving in home opener against ETSU (9/8) … Totaled three receptions for 33 yards in the season-opener against West Virginia (9/1).
2017 – FRESHMAN
Appeared in 12 games, making six starts … Finished with nine receptions for 98 yards …Made collegiate debut in season-opening win over Georgia Tech in Chick-fil-A Kickoff Game (9/4), making one catch for seven yards … Had an 18-yard grab vs. Indiana State (9/9) and made an 11-yard catch at Florida (9/16).
Rated as a three-star prospect out of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, prep powerhouse St. Thomas Aquinas High School … 2016 Florida Class 7A All-State Second Team … Helped lead St. Thomas Aquinas to the Florida 7A state title in 2016 … Collected 32 catches for 506 yards and eight scores as a senior in 2016.
Full name is Joshua Keith Palmer … Born Sept. 22, 1999 … Son of Keith and Alethia Palmer … Majoring in management … Part of VOLeaders Class that traveled to Rwanda in the summer of 2019 … Only the sixth Vol from Canada to earn a letter all-time … Parents are of Jamaican descent and father played football at Windsor … Grew up mostly playing basketball and football and became serious about football in the ninth grade … Recipient of the Emmon Love Athletic Memorial Endowed Scholarship.