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Joel Klatt ranks the top five pass-catchers in 2024 NFL Draft

On3 imageby:Kaiden Smith02/26/24


Joseph Cress/Iowa City Press-Citizen - USA TODAY NETWORK

The 2024 NFL Draft class is absolutely loaded with pass-catchers this year. With a multitude of wide receivers and a handful of tight ends bound to have a major impact immediately upon their arrival in the league.

NFL teams that are looking for a pass-catcher ahead of the 2024 season are likely rejoicing ahead of the draft. As there is plenty of size, speed, and experience to go around with one of the deepest wide receiver groups to date. But who will be the best available when the first round kicks off on April 25?

College football analyst Joel Klatt answered just that, ranking his top five pass catchers ahead of the NFL draft along with some honorable mentions in a robust talent pool.

1. Marvin Harrison Jr., Ohio State


The reigning Biletnikoff Award winner takes the top spot in Klatt’s rankings and most others ahead of the draft. With Marvin Harrison Jr. becoming the only Ohio State wideout in history to be a two-time All-American after racking up 2,474 yards and an FBS-leading 28 touchdowns in the past two seasons. Bringing an NFL level of pedigree with his namesake before even taking a single snap at the next level.

“He is as good as they come,” Klatt said. “Physically he’s way bigger than would expect, he’s 6’4 all of 205 [pounds], probably a little bit more. He’s fast, I think he’s faster than people realize, he runs terrific routes, he’s a technician in a lot of ways, understands the game, and is a tireless worker.”

2. Brock Bowers, Georgia


Bowers is the only reason why Klatt’s list is described as pass-catchers and not wide receivers after the only two time Mackey Award winner in college football history established himself as one of the most lethal weapons in the game. Many are curious about where Bowers will be drafted given his dominant 175 catches for 2,538 yards and 31 total touchdowns in his three years and the nature of his position. But Klatt believes he’s proven to be worthy of a high pick.

“Brock Bowers impacts the game every time he’s on the field. Whether it’s third down, whether it’s red zone, this guy is an impact player. He’s fast, he’s a matchup nightmare, and he plays a position that is highly valuable,” Klatt said.

3. Rome Odunze, Washington

Joe Nicholson – USA TODAY Sports

Washington wideout Rome Odunze ranks third on Klatt’s list after being one of the toughest people to cover in college football in back-to-back seasons. Odunze is a remarkable athlete who specializes in contested catches and big plays, many of which he made in the Huskies’ biggest moments last year.

“Rome is phenomenal,” Klatt said. “Led the country in receiving last year, over 1,600 yards. One of the things I loved about Rome Odunze is that when they needed big performances against some of the stiffest competition that they played he was at his best.”

4. Malik Nabers, LSU

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LSU wideout Malik Nabers was the epitome of explosive last season in the Tigers’ nation-leading offense. Ending his LSU career as the program leader in receptions and receiving yards after posting a career-high 89 catches for 1,569 yards and 14 touchdowns.

“Nabers was, I would say, maybe the most explosive guy in the country,” Klatt admitted. “He led the country with 17 catches of over 30 yards, he had nine 100-yard games, and he was a big reason why Jayden Daniels had such a productive season and ultimately won the Heisman Trophy.”

5. Keon Coleman, Florida State

Melina Myers – USA TODAY Sports

Florida State’s Keon Coleman rounds out the top five as arguably the most athletic prospect of the group. The former Michigan State basketball player stands at 6-foot-4, 215 pounds and made some of the most jaw-dropping plays of the college football season last year, leading the ACC with 11 receiving touchdowns last year.

“Now Keon Coleman transferred from Michigan State and came down there and made some splash plays for the Seminoles. He was terrific, he was terrific … I mean he was a big reason why that team was so good, undefeated all the way through the regular season,” Klatt said.

Honorable Mentions

Mark J. Rebilas – USA TODAY Sports

With so many elite pass catchers in this year’s draft class, Klatt couldn’t help but honorably mention some other elite players who could make an absolute splash on Sundays next season. Also providing some perspective on how such a deep group of wide receivers could impact the entire 2024 NFL Draft as a whole.

“There’s some really good players that aren’t listed right now, and I mean really good players,” Klatt said. “And that’s where the value of these five is going to be hurt … There’s a chance that these NFL organizations look at the crop of pass catchers and they think to themselves, ‘you know what, maybe we don’t have to do this now, maybe we take a great defensive player because that stable isn’t quite as see and wait for a wide receiver later in the draft.'”