College: Southeast Missouri State
Position: Wide Receiver
College Stats: 175 catches for 2,435 yards, 29 touchdowns.
Not all that often does a player from the OVC get the chance to play at the next level in the NFL. Even rarer is that player from SEMO. Wide receiver Paul McRoberts is an exception to the rule, forcing the NFL to take notice with a record setting 2015 season. McRoberts was also part of the basketball team for a season. The St. Louis native was a First Team All-OVC selection in both the 2014 and 2015 seasons.
McRoberts is one of those players that you cannot help but root for. He is one of five children and the first to attend college. He lost his father to a heart attack as a child and lost a brother more recently. McRoberts has been able to use sports as an outlet to overcome so many difficulties in his life.
A former basketball player, it is clear that precise footwork is important to McRoberts. He has the attitude of a rebounder when the ball is in the air, inviting contact while still making acrobatic plays. He has long arms and big hands with the ability to make several one handed catches throughout his career. .
McRoberts was also an effective punt and kick returner at SEMO. He was more explosive returning punts, but was a reliable player good for getting every yard given to him. McRoberts is a tireless worker, a trait seen at a high number among small school standouts. He was named captain two times and is a great character guy on and off the field.
McRoerts has solid speed, but does not have the many gears that top level wideouts possess. He can be stymied by physical coverage at the line of scrimmage. He must work at being a much more consistent player, looking like an All-American on one play and looking disinterested on other plays.
Though natural skill is there for McRoberts, he has yet to tap into his potential as a wideout. He needs some time to season as a pass catcher and route runner if he is going to be effective in the NFL. Many teams see him as a late round or undrafted player due to his lack of refinement as an overall receiver.
Where will McRoberts get drafted?
McRoberts needs to find a team that will have litte use of him in 2015. He needs time on an NFL roster, possibly on a practice squad, to develop into an NFL level player. Expect a team with future needs at wide receiver to take a chance with a low risk seventh round pick.
My prediction is that McRoberts will get drafted by the the Miami Dolphins with the #231 pick of the seventh round.