Player: Equanimeous St. Brown, WR, Notre Dame
Game: vs. North Carolina State (#14), 2:30 PM CT
What They’re Saying
From a PFF prospect preview of ESB:
Notre Dame junior WR Equanimeous St. Brown, a 6-foot-5, 204-pounder, exploded in first season with a significant workload a year ago. Hauling in 58 receptions for 961 yards and nine touchdowns, Brown ranked No. 5 among returning Power 5 and Independent (FBS) wide receivers in yards per route run (2.69).
Dropping just three of his 61 catchable targets in 2016, St. Brown ranked No. 7 among that same group of wide receivers in drop rate.
St. Brown still needs to develop as a big-play threat on the outside to become a complete package at the next level. He ranked No. 42 and No. 46 in the 2018 draft class in deep pass yards and deep pass catch percentage last season, respectively.
- Special talent. Truly special talent. But there’s no way to evaluate him in this Notre Dame offense that (a) runs for like 300 yards a week now and (b) starts a quarterback from my high school (P-R-E-P PREP! PREP! PREP!) who isn’t good at throwing passes.
- One thing the Bears will like is watching him run block 20 times a game. Because if he’s drafted into this Bears offense that’s a seriously valuable skill set. (Right now it’s the most valuable.)
- As always with wide receivers in the draft, nobody will know where he’s going to be taken until he runs. But ND lists this kid as 6-5, 203 lbs. That size with decent speed is lethal in this league.
Why Watch This Week
A good writer named Tom Shanahan cites commentary from a Raleigh radio host, Steve Logan, in a recent blog post:
But Logan thinks N.C. State can turn Notre Dame’s strong running game to its advantage. The Wolfpack have one of the top defensive lines in the nation, led by projected first-round draft pick Bradley Chubb at defensive end. The Wolfpack are ranked sixth, allowing only 91.3 yards a game.
“It can happen,” Logan said of an upset. “Notre Dame is generating 470 yards a game — 300 on the ground. That’s good news from this standpoint for Dave Huxtable, the defensive coordinator at N.C. State: He can bring his safeties in to stop the run. It’s easier to bring the safeties to stop the run and make somebody beat you throwing the ball as opposed to the other way around. This is where N.C. State has an advantage.”
Logan seems to believe this is a week Notre Dame may struggle to run the ball. If that’s the case, this is the week to tune in and watch their top receiving threat; a serious Bears prospect in the coming draft.