The Philadelphia Eagles selected John Hightower, Wide Receiver, out of Boise State University. He was the 23rd pick of the fifth round and was the 24th wide receiver drafted in the 2020 NFL Draft.
John Hightower is 6’2” and 182 pounds. John Hightower played his first two years of college football at Hinds Community College before transferring to Boise State. He played two years at Boise State and will be 22 years old at the beginning of the 2020 NFL season. Originally a track star, Hightower was able to use those skills to establish a successful football profile and transfer to Boise for his junior and senior seasons.
John Hightower broke out at the age of 21 (age during their first season with a 20% receiving dominator rating) in his second season for the Broncos. Hightower’s best season was his senior season at 21 years old. Hightower had 51 catches, for 1,097 receiving yards, and eight scrimmage touchdowns for a receiving dominator rating (average percentage of their team’s receiving yards and receiving touchdowns) of 25.8% (31st percentile). Hightower had below-average age-adjusted production. He averaged 882.0 scrimmage yards (79th percentile) and eight scrimmage touchdowns (82nd percentile) per season for an average scrimmage dominator rating (average percentage of their team’s scrimmage yards and scrimmage touchdowns) per season of 14.4% (68th percentile). Hightower was exceptionally efficient as well and averaged 0.89 scrimmage yards per team play (71st percentile). Hightower performed on special teams too. He had 37 returns, for 842 return yards, and one return touchdown.
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John Hightower has a legitimate height-adjusted speed score of 99.5 (68th percentile) after running a 4.43-second 40-yard time at the NFL Combine. He has a phenomenal burst score of 126.5 (79th percentile) and an average agility score of 11.28 (43rd percentile). Hightower is an explosive wide receiver with excellent speed and burst. He is a finesse receiver that will win vertically in the NFL.
NFL Landing Spot
Philadelphia Eagles: One of the better landing spots for a rookie. 2019’s 12th rank offense. The Eagles ran more plays than any other offense, and threw on 58.9% of those plays. Carson Wentz’s 93.1 was good for 13th best, and he was above league average targeting most of the field. The Eagles only had one receiver play in all 16 of their games. JJ Arcega Whiteside had all the opportunity in the world, but the Stanford second round pick only managed to garner 22 receptions and was largely unimpressive. Zach Ertz remains the focal point of this passing attack, leading in targets in 2018 and 2019. Second year pro Dallas Goedert brought in the second most targets, seeing 87 to Ertz’ 135, meaning that the TE position accounted for 36% of the team’s targets. RB Miles Sanders drew a 10% target share. Alshon Jeffrey remains the WR1 for this team, but he has never been able to recapture his 2014 brillance, is coming off a big injury, has worn out his welcome in Philly and is a frequent target of trade speculation. DeSean Jackson remains a deep threat, but his health remains a concern and the Eagles can move on from him after this season. Greg Ward rounds out this WR depth chart that is composed entirely of injury cases, trade candidates, possible draft busts and practice squad players.
***Editor’s Note*** The Philadelphia Eagles selected Jalen Reagor in the first round of the draft.
Rivals’ Rapid Analysis
John Hightower had below-average age-adjusted production in college but is an athletically gifted wide receiver. He will rely on his speed and quickness to gain separation and win against NFL defenders. The Eagles invested minimal draft capital into Hightower. He has some opportunity and will compete with Jeffery, Jackson and Reagor for targets from Wentz.
John Hightower is in Dave’s fifth wide receiver tier, his WR22-WR24 depending on other landing spots, and his 37th-41st ranked rookie overall. If managers are high on Hightower, Dave would target him in the fourth round of superflex or single quarterback rookie drafts. John Hightower wasn’t very productive in college but has some athletic upside. He lands on what feels like a wide-open depth chart in Philadelphia. Most likely Hightower will contribute on special teams and as a depth receiver for the Eagles. There are still several wide receivers left on the board that are more attractive options to swing for the fences on late in fantasy drafts than Hightower.
John Hightower is in Shawn’s fifth wide receiver tier,his WR24, and his Overall Rookie Rank 38. Shawn would target Hightower in the mid-to-late fourth round in superflex rookie drafts (Mid fourth round in single QB). The Eagles depth chart is a mess, even with the addition of Reagor in round one. Jeffery is still there, but remains a target of trade speculation. Jackson can never stay healthy. Hightower isn’t the most exciting guy, the Eagles might have been able to target better receivers here, but the fact remains that Hightower can develop some viability and serve as a last pick dart throw.
This article was written in collaboration with Shawn Kennedy. For more analysis check out Dave and Shawn’s previous articles at Dynasty Football Factory. Additionally, you can also find Dave’s dynasty superflex rankings at Dynasty Football Factory. Stay tuned for more rookie wide receiver rapid reaction articles from us throughout the entire NFL Draft. We will also give you instant reactions for priority UDFA wide receivers to help you try and find the next Adam Thielen. Interact with Dave and Shawn on Twitter @ff_spaceman and @ff_walrus. You can listen to our rivalry on our podcast @ATaleofTwoRivals with @ff_banterman.