Charlie Jones Gives the Commanders a Returner with Starting Potential3 min read
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Hogs Haven takes a look at 2023 NFL Draft prospects that could contribute to the Commanders
Charlie Jones, WR/KR/PR
School: Purdue | Conference: Big Ten
College Experience: Senior | Age: 24
Height / Weight: 5’11” / 175 lbs
Projected Draft Status: 3rd-5th Round
Player Comparison: Tyler Lockett
|Punt Ret||Kick Ret|
Charlie Jones has not had an easy path to being a draft prospect. Three-years starting at receiver in high school and earning team MVP as a senior only translated to being a two-star recruit. He landed in Buffalo and redshirted as a freshman in 2017. He had modest success the next season as a receiver and returner, but it was enough to get the attention of Iowa. He transferred in 2019 and sat out that season.
It was worth the wait because he was a weapon at punt returner for the Hawkeyes, averaging 10 yards a return and taking a punt to the house in 2020. In 2021, he produced as a receiver despite poor quarterback play and was named the Big Ten’s return specialist of the year. To maximize his talents at receiver, he transferred to Purdue to play with childhood friend, quarterback Aidan O’Connell. It paid off in a big way with Jones putting up his best stats at receiver in his career. He finished the season second in receiving yards throughout the country and first-team All-Big Ten.
- Speed shows up on tape as a returner and receiver
- Good coverage recognition, finding holes in zone
- Excellent tracking the ball downfield
- Hands are reliable, making tough catches
- Slippery runner with great quickness and vision
- Needs to diversify releases from the line of scrimmage
- Needs to improve strength when running routes and at the catch point
- Would like to see more of the route tree, especially in-breaking routes
- Tries as a blocker, but isn’t very effective
Let’s see his work
We talk plenty about the transfer portal and what it can do for coaches/teams. It can also do a lot for players in the right spots.
Two savvy portal guys who have jumped their stock so far in 2022:
Purdue WR Charlie Jones
Michigan OC Olu Oluwatimi https://t.co/rVlXqMfNms pic.twitter.com/VUqP1fUlwc
— Nick Baumgardner (@nickbaumgardner) October 3, 2022
Charles Jones is a WR prospect in the 2023 draft class. He scored a 7.70 RAS out of a possible 10.00. This ranked 644 out of 2801 WR from 1987 to 2023. https://t.co/agQZlq5KF2 #RAS pic.twitter.com/EpaeM7eWKe
— Kent Lee Platte (@MathBomb) March 10, 2023
How he fits on the Commanders
Wide receiver is definitely a strength of the Commanders, but punt returner is not. Charlie Jones immediately assumes punt returning duties if he comes to Washington and should beat out a player like Dax Milne for a roster spot. Jones is a more talented wide receiver prospect with upside to be at least WR3. That would help the Commanders long-term as Curtis Samuel will be a free agent after next season. To reach his potential, Jones will have to get stronger and refine his technique, but he makes a lot of sense for the Commanders on Day 3 of the draft.
Originally posted on Hogs Haven