With the wide receiver class being so deep, Howie is able to explore the possibility of drafting another position in the first round and still being able to draft an impact wideout in round two. If that’s the case Hamler is someone who would figure to be in play.
NFL.com has a Tavon Austin comparison listed, which doesn’t really give you the full picture of Hamler’s dynamic skillset. They’re similar players, sure, but Hamler’s burst, acceleration, and electric wiggle in the open field is something Austin never quite had; not to mention he’s a better route runner. Throw on about 10 lbs of muscle and the more accurate comparison is Tyreke Hill.
Hamler is a guy who teams will find a variety of ways to get the ball to, and would work well out of the slot in the Birds RPO packages. He has the sort of speed to take the top off a secondary combined with the sharp route-running and RAC-ability that allows him be virtually uncoverable.
The catch with Hamler is his size—at 5’9’’ 180 he figures to be injury prone—and his history of drops. While he doesn’t necessarily have a ‘drop problem,’ he’s not as sure handed as you’d like. I don’t expect Hamler to be around at 52; I expect too many teams to recognize his potential in today’s passing game to let him hang around that long.
I wouldn’t be opposed to trading up into the mid-40s to secure Hamler if he’s the receiver they prefer. If they plan on going with another position at 21, they need to be aggressive in getting “their guy” at WR in the second round.