Senior Moments: WR Antonio Gandy-Golden

In preparation for FakePigskin’s 2020 Senior Bowl / NFL draft coverage, I will take an look at prospects whom are projected to have a key role at the next level.

Each prospect will be broken down by characteristics used when evaluating players and how they should transition to the big league.

Name:       Antonio Gandy-Golden

Position:    Wide Receiver

School:      Liberty

Height:      6’ 4”

Weight:      220

Overview

Liberty’s Antonio Gandy-Golden may have flown under the radar playing in the Independence (FBS) Conference and not getting national exposure, but NFL GM’s will surely be giving this extremely athletic and physical receiver a microscopic look at the 2020 Senior Bowl.

Through two seasons, Gandy-Golden has amassed 150 receptions for 2,430 yards; averaging 16.2 yards per grab and scoring 20 touchdowns.

One aspect that is likely to divert extra attention from recruiters is the uncanny ability to fight for the football, especially at its highest point over much smaller defensive backs and will be an excellent red zone target.

Attributes

Release vs. Press Coverage

Gandy Golden tends to get off the ball a bit slow and didn’t face much press coverage. When he did, he struggled. This will be an aspect that will be closely monitored by evaluators at the Senior Bowl and Combine.

Route Running

While getting off the line quickly will likely require upgraded technique, once launched the true skillset will shine, beginning with the route running. His best talent is how he can size up defensive backs and win the one on one balls. This will be invaluable when thrown the back-shoulder fade. He also excels at the nine-route and slant patterns.

Run after Catch

Strength and more strength. Rarely tackled by the first defender. Busted many screen passes and quickly gets into the open field. For a large man, he can also juke defensive backs who are already thinking twice about tackling him. Once in the open field, he can take it to the house.

Hands/Body Adjustment

Possesses a solid pair of hands and will catch most everything with his large wingspan. Continually puts himself in great position to make a play on the ball. Can easily become a possession receiver.

Blocking

Gandy-Golden was not asked to block much during his college stint, but certainly has the size and strength to make this an asset.

Playmaking and Separation Ability

Tracks the ball exceptionally well, especially on long routes and sideline grabs that require finesse. Can separate from the defensive back at the end of a long route. Can be counted on to make the big catch when needed most.

Final Thoughts

No doubt, the talent is there. Up front and tangible. He possesses many of the skills NFL general managers covet. Yet many questions remain. A solid Senior Bowl and Combine will surely turn the needle in the upward position.

Scouts are already all over the place with their evaluation of Gandy-Golden making him the ideal player to follow during this offseason.

Projected: Expect to see Gandy-Golden go early on the third day.

Questions Mark: How he will handle press coverage, downfield blocking and an upgrade in competition.

Comp: Dez Bryant

Team Fit: New England

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