Found December 17, 2012 on Optimum Scouting:
It's been fun to watch this West Virginia offense all season long. Geno Smith has been flat out dominant this season as more and more fans and evaluators realize that he's one of, if not thee, top quarterback prospect for the 2013 NFL Draft. And his Heisman vote-garnering teammate Tavon Austin has developed into a polarizing yet exciting prospect as people evaluate the Mountaineers. But lost in the shuffle, unfortunately and a little unfairly, in the media has been fellow receiver Stedman Bailey, who, according to Mike Casazza, will be declaring for the draft. And he's a legitimate Top 50 prospect in his own right that fans and evaluators should begin to catch-up on.   While Bailey may not have gotten the equal media attention that Smith and Austin received, he's certainly earned high marks and high grades by evaluators. A more NFL ready, developed, and polished receiver prospect than Tavon Austin, he's likely one of the premier speed #2 receivers in this draft, and will be a prospect who can provide an instant playmaker who can play the slot or outside at the NFL level. And interestingly enough, he's already gotten "attention" and a draft grade from someone close to him: his quarterback. Here's what his quarterback Geno Smith had to say about Bailey as a receiver prospect (all via twitter) on December 11th: "To say SB3 is a third round pic is absurd, the guy dominated every corner he lined up against...Once again politics playing a bigger role than production, which in fact robs the guy from well deserved accolades and discredits hard work."   While he went on to make a comment about major media and analyst types that we won't get into, he made his point about Bailey's contribution and his future NFL ceiling. And we here at Optimum Scouting agree. RELATED: 2013 NFL Draft Underclassmen Tracker So what is Bailey's scouting report, at least as of now? Here's what Alex Brown of Optimum Scouting, our lead Big 12/SEC scout who has evaluated a majority of West Virginia's games this year, had to say: "All season long, Stedman Bailey displayed consistently strong, physical hands at the point of the catch, winning short, intermediate and deep, regardless of how many defenders were nearby. Is a very precise and calculated route runner that possesses the fluid hips to get in and out of breaks with ease. On deep post routes and vertical-9 patterns, Bailey was tremendous in attack the cornerback’s technique, winning the positioning battle by stacking over the top of the cornerback and maintaining leverage through the catch point by keeping the corner on his back hip. His speed, surprising physicality and suddenness in and out of breaks, make for a dynamic outside receiver at the NFL level. Dominating Texas cornerback Carrington Byndum in West Virginia’s matchup with the Texas Longhorns, Bailey consistently won off the line with his release, sharp route breaks, and firm hands at the catch point. Bailey put on a slant route clinic, by sticking the corner on his back hip off the line and snatching 4 slants for 3 redzone touchdowns. Following the game, I wrote that, “should he declare, Bailey may end up being drafted in the top two rounds.” A first round selection isn’t entirely out of the question for Bailey, should he test well at the combine. Measuring at or just above 5’10, Bailey’s height should not be held against him, as he still wins at the catch point with strength and physicality." Alex and myself are certainly on the same page as Geno Smith: Stedman Bailey is worth more than a 3rd round pick. He has #2 receiver type talent, big play ability, and is further along in his development than many spread, quicker receivers that declare. Many have jumped on the "Geno Smith" bandwagon this season. And Heisman voters and fans alike grew to enjoy watching Tavon Austin play. But it's time for Stedman Bailey to get his much deserved hype.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

West Virginia WR Stedman Bailey to enter NFL draft

West Virginia's record-breaking receiver Stedman Bailey is forgoing his final season to enter the NFL draft. The announcement came during a press conference with head coach Dana Holgorsen on Monday ahead of the Mountaineers' date with Syracuse in the Pinstripe Bowl. The game at Yankee Stadium in New York City also will be the last for quarterback Geno Smith and receiver...

WVU star Bailey to enter NFL draft

West Virginia's record-breaking receiver Stedman Bailey is forgoing his final season to enter the NFL draft. The announcement came during a press conference with head coach Dana Holgorsen on Monday ahead of the Mountaineers' date with Syracuse in the Pinstripe Bowl. The game at Yankee Stadium in New York City also will be the last for quarterback Geno Smith and receiver...

Tavon Austin named All-Purpose Performer of Year

CHARLOTTE, N.C. – West Virginia University’s Tavon Austin has earned the 2012 All-Purpose Performer of the Year Trophy, announced today by College Football Performance Awards. Austin will receive the award at the Mountaineers’ home men’s basketball game vs. Oakland on Dec. 19. Austin, the Mountaineers’ leader in receptions, contributed 2,764 all-purpose yards this season...
Mountaineers News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

OPTIMUM SCOUTING
RECENTLY ON OPTIMUM SCOUTING
2014 Mountain West Conference Preview: Top 10 Senior NFL Draft Prospects
2015 NFL Draft: Get to Know These Three Underrated Senior Prospects
2014 College Football Preview: SEC’s Top Senior Prospects for the 2015 NFL Draft
2014 Heisman Odds: Evaluating the Senior Candidates and their 2015 NFL Draft Futures
2014 College Football Preview: Top Senior Prospects for the 2015 NFL Draft
2014 College Football Preview: Big 12′s Top 10 Seniors for the 2015 NFL Draft
2014 Supplemental Draft: No Prospects Drafted, All Four Now Become Free Agents
2014 Supplemental Draft: North Carolina’s Darius Lipford Leads Four Eligible Prospects
Bruce Feldman’s “Freak List”: Evaluating the Seniors For the 2015 NFL Draft
2015 NFL Draft: Ranking the Top 5 Prospects for Each Big Ten Team
Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.