Commodores ~ 6025/204
Being Linemen, they are indeed required to line up on the Line of Scrimmage before the Snap, unlike the others.
As this places them nose to nose with the opposing CornerBack ~ whereas the SlotBacks & Flankers are allowed to align a couple steps back, thus affording them more room to maneuver ~ they need to be beefier.
*Please do note, though: Schematically, the Split End is whoever lines up as the Split End...But for the purposes of these Scouting Reports, I am applying this NomenClature to those who are Split Ends by trade, so to speak: Those whose Skills Sets apply best to that particular Job Description. What their Coaches might do with them, once they're drafted, is another matter all together. Ditto, Flankers & SlotBacks. In any case, many play multiple Roles.
The most compelling Attributes of a Split End, in the 21st Century, are, in my view, and in no particular order:
Separation. Getting Open. This encompasses their ability to beat Press, their Acceleration out'f the Blocks, their Routing Precision, their Agility, their Ricochet, their capacity to outsmart Defenders, and their Instincts.
Catching. This encompasses Hands, Catch Radius, Vertical Agility, and Timing.
Navigation. How well he Navigates the Field in Pursuit of Yards After Catch: Power, Agility, and Field Vision.
Blocking. Having a WideOut who doesn't Block effectively is like having 10 Men on the Field of Battle.
Catching ~ Exceptional. He laid a few Clankers down in previous Years, but Matthews is vastly improved, this Year. He Tracks the Ball exceptionally well, and often exhibits spectacular Vertical Agility. He clearly needs to develop his Capacity to Box Out Defenders at the Catch Point, but he's got huge Hands and immense Potential.
Navigation ~ Adept. He's racked up pedestrian Yards After Catch Stats at VanDerBilt, but I couldn't help but notice that it is not very often that's put in a position to do so. When he actually gets the Ball with a little bit of Space to work with, his Ricochet is unremarkable, but he demonstrates Fluidity, Power and startling BreakAway Speed!!
Blocking ~ Outstanding. Consistently gets low and drives his man back. Very impressive, considering his Height.
What I love most about Jordan Matthews's Game is his Routing. The variety of Routes that he's been asked to run at VanDerBilt, and the sprawling array of Alignments whence he's been tasked to run them, has been astounding.
Most impressively, though, is that he runs them extraordinarily well, and that he has quite clearly invested Years of Practice, Patience, Attention to Detail, and open-minded attention to Coaching in order to master all the nuances that go into the vast array of moves, adjustments, and subtleties necessary for Success at The Next Level.
His Long Speed is unremarkable, nor is he blessed with explosive Ricochet out'f'is Cuts. But he's Quick, he's Fluid, and his Acceleration is exhilarating. You gotta check out the 2:43 Mark of this Draft BreakDown Tape in VanDerBilt's Game against the Ole Mississippi Rebels. He gets on'is Horse. That...is BreakAway Speed.
Perhaps most telling of all is that Matthews consistently produces at an high level against the SEC's Best.
He will not only consistently Move The Chains for you, but he'll rip 20 or 30 Yards off at a time.
And as soon as a Defender is lulled to sleep by Matthews's 40 Time, he'll suddenly surge 60 Yards and score.
And he'll do so in January, against the Best Defenses, when The Only Games That Really Matter are played.
Thanks, as always, to the extraordinary Work by the men of Draft BreakDown!!
Consensus Market Value