Much has been made of Laquon Treadwell's 40-yard dash at the Ole Miss pro day, which clocked at 4.63. Certainly, that's not an ideal time for a wide receiver, particularly one who is just 6'2 with a generally average vertical. It's tough to gauge too much based around which receivers have been successful at similar speeds. To list just a few though, Plaxico Buress ran a 4.59, Larry Fitzgerald a 4.63. Anquan Boldin and Keenan Allen each ran 4.71s. Kelvin Benjamin ran a 4.61 and Mohamed Sanu a 4.67.
There have been many, many more failures with speeds over 4.6 though than there have been successes. In order to truly overcome his speed limitations and be worth the top 15 selection Treadwell is flirting with, he'll have to carry his strengths into the NFL. He has to be able to be physically dominant with the ball in his hands after the catch. He has to be a tenacious blocker in the running game. He has to make circus plays and be a reliable chain mover. That type of play is why the guys like Fitzgerald and Boldin have succeeded.
Treadwell isn't ever going to be a burner, but he does have to make sure that he doesn't waste any time in and out of breaks. He's a good route runner but not an elite one. He'll have to hone that craft in the NFL.
I can say with certainty that wherever Treadwell ends up on draft day, I'll be cheering for that team (unless it's the Patriots). For it to be truly enjoyable, however, Treadwell needs to flourish. With that in mind, here are a few teams I think he could fit in with.
Ravens, pick 6
Baltimore is starting Steve Smith and Mike Wallace at the moment. Smith is getting old, and Wallace is a speed-based receiver. Treadwell could really benefit from having that type of receiver opposite him. Plus, it would be fun to cheer for a team with a pair of starting receivers from Ole Miss.
And we're all aware Joe Flacco is a elite quarterback.
Giants, pick 10
WOOO ELI MANNING TO LAQUON TREADWELL
Saints, pick 12
New Orleans' tallest starting receiver is 5'11 Willie Snead. Treadwell could step in as the Marques Colston replacement and fill that role well. He's not as tall as Colston, but he does play a similar game.
And of course a lot of Ole Miss fans would love this, since many are also Saints fans.
Rams, pick 15
I mean... their starting receivers are currently Tavon Austin (who is very fast but is also 5'8, 176) and Kenny Britt (who is alright but not great). Also, Todd Gurley is insanely good and could go crazy if there were legitimate receiving threats in
St. Louis Los Angeles. Unfortunately, their QB situation is a mess.
Washington Somethings, pick 21
Laquon could step in and work with Pierre Garcon for a year. Washington is considering not extending Garcon's contract, so he would move into the starting role in year two. Desean Jackson would be across from Treadwell and has good speed. When running back Matt Jones has adequate blocking, he can do great things with the football. While the offensive line would remain an issue, Treadwell could help spring Jones to the outside more.
Vikings, pick 23
Stefon Diggs is a good deep threat (who Teddy Bridgewater's weaker arm can't really utilize). Jarius Wright is listed as the other starting receiver. He's small and didn't do much last season. Treadwell could function as a nice chain-mover.
Adrian Peterson is the running back.
Bengals, pick 24
AJ Green is a fantastic receiver, but the Bengals just lost Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu during the offseason. They need to find someone to put across from Green and take the heat off of him. In Cincinnati, Treadwell wouldn't have the top end speed guy across from him to really take the top off of defenses, but AJ Green is double-covered on almost every play. That's essentially as good.
Jeremy Hill and Gio Bernard are very good, young backs. Andy Dalton is an alright quarterback... though he just goes through bouts of terrible-ness sometimes. I was an AJ Green fantasy owner for five years. It's... not all that fun sometimes.
Chiefs, pick 28
Jeremy Maclin and Albert Wilson are the starters. Both are undersized, with Wilson coming in at 5'9 200 and Maclin at 6'0 198.
Alex Smith isn't looking for a deep threat. Without great arm strength, he relies on receivers who can help move the chains. Maclin still provides significant speed to couple with Treadwell's physical play.
The running game is the strength of the team, with Jamaal Charles, Charcandrick West, and Spencer Ware all being pretty good runners. Treadwell would be asked to block a lot in this offense and could really help with that.
The freaking Patriots, pick 29 (do not have a first round pick)
Currently, the Patriots are starting Julian Edelman and Danny Amendola on the outside. Amendola is 5'11 and has played in 16 games just twice in his seven-year career. Edelman is 5'10 and has played in 16 games just once during his seven years in the league. Treadwell would be a big, durable body that the receiving corps is missing.
Tom Brady is, of course, quite good. In the running game, Dion Lewis is a smaller back who is electric with good blocking. Treadwell could really help open up some things on the outside and extend runs for the guy.
But... please don't let him end up with the Patriots, God.