Vikings Draft Thermometer: WR Jalin Hyatt
Welcome to the Vikings Draft Thermometer series, PurplePTSD‘s one-stop shop for all your 2023 NFL Draft needs. Throughout this series, we will be examining a number of prospects ahead of the 2023 NFL Draft, analyzing their strengths, weaknesses, what exactly their role could be at the NFL level, and most importantly, whether or not they could end up playing their first NFL snaps in a Vikings uniform. With that, let’s take a look at today’s prospect: Tennessee WR Jalin Hyatt.
- Height: 6’0
- Weight: 185 pounds
- School: Tennessee
- Games Watched: Alabama (2022), Georgia (2022), Florida (2022)
- 2020: 20 receptions, 276 yards, 2 TDs (8 games)
- 2021: 21 receptions, 226 yards, 2 TDs (9 games)
- 2022: 67 receptions, 1267 yards, 15 TDs (12 games)
First and foremost, Jalin Hyatt became a stud at Tennessee because of his ability to stretch the field with his speed. It’s a game-breaking ability that puts opposing defenses in fits trying to keep up with him. However, he’s not a speedster with drop issues. He has very soft hands and is a reliable catcher.
He has a very good chance to put up the fastest 40 in the entire class when the combine rolls around, and while that doesn’t directly translate to NFL success, it will showcase just how much track speed he has. Combine that with good receiver hands, great length, and a willingness to absorb contact, and we could be looking at a future star.
Because of Hyatt’s speed, it wasn’t truly necessary for him to have an expansive route tree during his collegiate years. He primarily took snaps in the slot, rarely faced press coverage, and his routes were virtually limited to go’s, comebacks, and screens.
Because of that, there are going to be bumps along the road as he enters the NFL. It’s going to be much harder to scheme him into open space in the NFL, and he needs to prove an ability to expand his route tree if he ever can become a complete receiver.
- Draft Round: Mid First-Early Second
- Immediate Role: Starting WR2/slot receiver
- Best Case Scenario: Calvin Ridley
- Vikings Draft Temperature: 50
Inevitably, there will be questions about Jalin Hyatt’s size as the 2023 Draft approaches. He also doesn’t have a great route tree right now, but there’s no evidence that he can’t run smooth routes just because of Tennessee’s scheme on offense. His blazing speed also makes up for many negatives, and he can be a game-changer for an offense in terms of big play potential.
In terms of the Vikings drafting him, it wouldn’t be shocking to see him go earlier than the mid-20s based on his potential. If the Vikings trade down and get another Day Two pick to snag receiver/defender duo with their first two picks, and he falls into the early second round, this makes a lot more sense for Minnesota.
Josh Frey is a Class of 2020 graduate of The College of Idaho with a bachelor’s degree in Creative Writing. He also earned minors in History, Human Biology, and Journalism. When he’s not writing about the NFL, Josh enjoys marathon training, playing video games, or rooting for the Milwaukee Brewers and Bucks. For more of his opinions, check out his Twitter account: @Freyed_Chicken.