5 receivers the Patriots could have drafted instead of Ja'Lynn Polk

Alabama v Texas A&M
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Troy Franklin 

Franklin mysteriously fell in the draft; one theory suggests he struggled to impress teams when they interviewed him while others believe his slim waistline was the crucial factor.

That same concern was raised about DeVonta Smith when he headed to the draft. Smith, or “skinny Batman” as they call him in Philadelphia, has caught 240 passes for 3,178 yards without many problems since.  

During his three seasons in Oregon, Franklin played 40 games, so he must be pretty durable. In those 40 games, he hauled in an impressive 160 catches, racking up 2,483 yards. The former Menlo-Atherton High School student also caught 25 touchdown passes.

The 21-year-old didn’t do himself justice at the Combine; his 4.41 40-yard time was ranked in the 81st percentile, but it was disappointing by Franklin’s standards. He clocked 22.3 mph when Oregon played USC in September so he should have run quicker indoors and without pads on.  

As you'd imagine, the rest of Franklin’s tape is jaw-dropping from someone who scored in 63% of the games he played. But teams may have been concerned about his route tree, or lack thereof. Franklin didn’t have to run many different routes because college defenses couldn't keep up when he hit his top speed.

Even when opponents played with one (very) deep safety, Franklin’s speed, combined with the poor angles defenders took, meant Franklin breezed past them.