Welcome to volume VI of “The Draft Spies”. This week, we will spy on an exciting wide receiver prospect: Dazz Newsome. We will discuss why he is one of the most intriguing and electric players that the Bills could select in the upcoming NFL draft. Continuing the existing trend of adding effective Wide Receivers could greatly enhance offensive production.
SPY 1: WHO is the prospect?
Dazz Newsome hails from Hampton, Virginia, and also attended Hampton High School. The high school football career he assembled is more prolific than most. He played both offense (Running Back/Wide Receiver) and defense (Defensive Back), receiving accolades in all three phases of the game. Newsome scorched his league with 1,684 rushing yards, 413 receiving yards, and 35 touchdowns in 13 games as a senior. He led the league in all punt return categories and played a crucial role in the team’s (ultimately unsuccessful) championship run. He earned All-State Honors and the Offensive Player of the Year award from the Daily Press. Newsome received considerable interest from ACC schools, Maryland and North Carolina in particular. As a matter of fact, he initially committed to the Terrapins before flipping to the Tar Heels.
SPY 2: WHERE did he come from?
Evidently, he made the right decision. Newsome quietly tore up the ACC in much the same manner he did in High School. He played in all but four games in his entire UNC career. (Insert McDermott “availability” quote here.) Additionally, Newsome earned Second-Team All-ACC in 2019 and a spot on the 2020 Biletnikoff Award (Top Collegiate WR) watch-list. Meanwhile, he finished his UNC career third all-time in receptions (182), fifth in receiving yards (2,435), and tied-seventh in receiving scores (18).
SPY 3: WHAT are his attributes?
According to Joe Marino of The Draft Network, Newsome is “a good route-runner with excellent separation quickness, has terrific hands, outstanding ball skills, and is a fearless competitor”. TDN projects the 5’11”, 190 lb. receiver to be both a starting slot receiver and return man in the league. His top attribute has to be his insane ability to induce defensive mistakes throughout the play.
In the photo above, we see Dazz Newsome doing his best Josh Allen impression; simultaneously going beast mode and sending that defender into another dimension. This picture is proof that Newsome is punishingly difficult to bring down with the ball in his hands. The ability to deliver an off-angle stiff-arm while in mid-stride, all while exhibiting body rotation in the hips and core, is simply mind-blowing. Also, his eyes are focused straight ahead so that he can maximize his motor skills and vision to see the play through to the end. (This also helps with spatial anticipation and awareness.)
Lastly, Newsome shows the ability to coordinate his run-after-catch with his downfield blockers as one is seen in the immediate background. This is an important indicator of high football IQ and blockers will appreciate this trait.The 5’11”, 190 lb. receiver is projected by The Draft Network to be both a starting slot receiver and return man in the league. His top attribute has to be his (insert FIRE emoji) ability to lure defenders into making mistakes throughout the play, whether reading his route, path, or intentions in general.
Pursuit Failure Caused Rate (PFCR)
It is finally time to debut the PFCR! As a refresher, PFCR is a statistical metric that measures how good a player is at causing over-pursuit, creating broken tackles/stiff-arms, and accruing yards after contact. PFCR is based on a formulaic approach including all components mentioned above. It is scored on a 0-100 scale and is given a “U” if it is trending up and a “D” if it is trending down.
Newsome PFCR Score: 81.4 U
Pursuing Newsome is an exceedingly difficult task for defenders. Whether reading his route or anticipating his next moves, Newsome is hard to bring down. His ability to shake and bake in coverage and the open field are matched by a few in the draft class. This makes him, to quote Joe Marino, “truly a threat to all levels of the field”.
SPY 4: WHEN should he be drafted?
It is thought that Dazz Newsome could go anywhere from the third to sixth rounds. Given his natural speed/elusiveness and production as both a Receiver and Punt Returner, we at BF project him as an early day three pick (fourth or fifth).
SPY 5: WHY Newsome is a fit for Buffalo’s offense?
Newsome is a hybrid of Stefon Diggs, Cole Beasley, and Isaiah McKenzie. (As wild as that may sound.) Under the tutelage of master route runners Diggs and Beasley, he could become a stud Slot Receiver, making Buffalo’s passing attack even more lethal in the long-term. Additionally, Newsome would fill the Speed Receiver and Return Man roles from the get-go, offsetting the potential loss of Isaiah McKenzie Andre Roberts. (He would do his one-11th and more.) Lastly, and most importantly, Newsome has met virtually with the Bills, which means they have actual interest in him.
DARKHORSE BONUS POINT: Prospect Fun Facts
- Dazz’s father Myron and older brother Deon played collegiate football at Virginia Tech. (Family dinners must have been awkward.)
- Jonathan Alexander of the Chapel Hill News & Observer reported that Newsome’s ball skills improved considerably after UNC staff suggested that he see an eye doctor. The result of this visit was a diagnosis of nearsightedness and the prescription of contacts. (Needless to say, his vision improved.)
In closing, please follow The Buffalo Fanatics on all platforms, trust the process and go Bills.
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