6’4″, 220 pounds | Wide receiver | Alabama
Acceleration: Is a long strider and not a burst type receiver. Jones does have great speed, but it takes him 5-10 yards to build up to his full speed. Does not explode off the line or out of cuts, but has the speed to pressure a defense downfield.
Agility: Good agility. Jones is a natural athlete with good balance and body control. Does not show much quick burst, but has good overall agility.
Blocking: Surprisingly, Jones is one hell of a downfield blocker. In the Alabama offense, where running the ball was a priority, Jones had to become a good blocker. Uses his long frame to lock up defenders, but also runs off corners and sells play-action.
Hands: Jones can be too inconsistent here, which is one of the few attributes separating him from top wide receiver A.J. Green (Georgia). Lacks concentration. Some drops are caused by him tensing up before taking a hit from defenders. Will let the ball get into his body too often. Does make the occasional catch that blows your mind.
Release: Has a very good initial release off the line of scrimmage. Very good size and strength combination to fight off press coverage. Has big hands and long arms to swat away defenders who line up in zero coverage. Is not a quick-twitch athlete with a ton of burst, but he has exceptional speed and lateral mobility to avoid jams at the line of scrimmage. Gets off the line and in to his route fast. When given a cushion by the cornerback, Jones will exploit them every time.
Route running: Jones was very raw as a route runner, but has shown loads of improvement over the last year. Does a great job sinking his hips to make cuts and get in and out of breaks. Does not have the speed to plant and explode, but makes up for this with precise cuts and timing. Can get sloppy at times and will round off cuts. Will get too high at times in his breaks, making the route easy to diagnose by defenders. A very dangerous deep threat.
Size: Jones has ideal height, muscle tone and strength. He has long limbs and big hands. A lean frame, but surprisingly strong.
Speed: Jones does not possess sprinter speed. He is a long strider who takes time to get to full speed. He does have the speed required to run by defenders once he is given room to accelerate. Runs very well after the catch due to good agility and acceleration when he has the ball.
Final word: In any other year, Julio Jones would be the No. 1 receiver on our draft board. In 2011 he has to compete with A.J. Green in a fight he will not win. Jones should be lauded for his exceptional play at Alabama, and for his many talents as a receiver.
A fighter, Jones has played through injuries and will run routes across the middle with no fear. A dominating deep threat and downfield blocker, Jones will bring immediate value to any NFL team.
Jones projects as an early 1st Round pick, and could hear his named called anywhere from pick five to twenty in the first round.