Alec Pierce 2022 NFL Draft Profile
In today’s NFL, it isn’t enough to have a true #1 receiver on your roster. We have learned over the last decade or so that it pays to have a bonafide slot receiver as well. Guys like Wes Welker, Jordy Nelson, Hunter Renfrow, etc. have carved out a spot in the league for guys who are precise in their route tree. This bodes well for Cincinnati WR Alec Pierce. I see him being more of a possession/slot receiver in the NFL (yes, I know he is 6’3) with the potential to turn into a consistent starter in the league. Here is our 2022 draft profile on Alec Pierce.
From being a special teams player as a true freshman for the Bearcats to being a key contributor to their College Football Playoff berth, Pierce was a focal point of the offense this season. Pierce had a nice showing at the combine as well, highlighted by running a 4.41 40-yard dash time and a 40.5 vertical jump. He looked fluid in the drills and his combine performance turned heads, even landing him on Chris Simms’ top receivers list for this class.
Pierce showed great ability to burn DBs down the field. He plays with aggression not found among receivers anymore, and this helps him fight for contested catches. Pierce also uses his big frame to carve out spots on underneath routes for catches. His frame also gives him a pretty solid catch radius. I think his NFL career will start out with him best being used as mostly a red zone threat to start until he gets adjusted to game speed at the next level.
My biggest knock on Alec Pierce is his release off the line isn’t great. Yes, he has an ability to create separation late in routes and on go routes, but he struggles to create space off the line. This tells me that coordinators are going to run man against him and press him off the line. He tends to run upright a lot, and when he is about to break into routes this gives DBs the hint that another move is coming. Just feels more like a big play type of receiver to me.
I don’t hate Alec Pierce. Watching his tape, I do think he has a chance to develop into a starter in the NFL, but I don’t think success comes early. Pierce is definitely a mid-round pick with decent upside. Landing in a system that needs a big body receiver or one that already had WR depth to where he can come in for red zone plays will be critical to him finding success early on.
Best fits: Washington Commanders, Baltimore Ravens, New Orleans Saints, Miami Dolphins
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