Everyone is always looking for an edge in the later rounds of their rookie drafts. A pretty good source of that can be undrafted free agents. I’d like to let you in on my top couple UDFAs. The common theme of these guys is going to be players who landed on good offenses. I’m going to try to focus on the positives of each player, as there is not much benefit to focusing on the negatives of undrafted players. The acquisition cost of all these players is so low that risk, in general, is virtually nonexistent.
Emanuel Hall (WR) Chicago Bears
6’2” 201 lbs
4.39 40 yd Dash
90th Percentile Speed Score
99th Percentile Burst Score
Signed with the Bears very soon after the draft ended. Truth be told, I think he is a better prospect than the receiver they took with their fourth-round pick, Riley Ridley. Hall had a productive college career and is a plus athlete.
Hall: 2 Ridley: 0
He posted a 35.7% college dominator per Player Profiler, which is good for the 69th percentile (obligatory- Nice). His college yards per reception was a whopping 22.4! He has a middle of the road Breakout Age, but it’s more important for a prospect to have “broken out” earlier than to have done so later, or not have. I hate to keep picking on Riley Ridley, but he barely broke out in college, at the age of 22.1 (14th percentile). It should be noted it’s harder to be a productive wide receiver at Georgia with all the constant roster churn of high profile recruits, than at Missouri.
The Bears have a lot of depth at the wide receiver position. But when you consider that they could save 13 million dollars by cutting Allen Robinson in 2020, and have other players they will likely try to extend (Eddie Jackson, Mitchell Trubisky) in the next couple years, Hall could conceivably work his way into a good role in the offense. Taylor Gabriel is also a potential cut candidate in 2020(4.5 million dollar savings). Hall is going to clog a roster spot for at least a year or two before providing value, but he should be basically free to acquire.
Hall makes his mark on the football field by getting behind the defense. Check him out as he does that a bunch in this video. If you see him out there on a waiver wire or in the later rounds of your upcoming rookie draft, give him a shot.
Ashton Dulin (WR) Indianapolis Colts
6’1” 215 lbs
4.43 40 yd Dash
93rd Percentile Speed Score
73rd Percentile Burst Score
Another wideout, another good offense. The Colts are admittedly a better landing spot than the Bears, because of the more sure thing with Andrew Luck at the quarterback position. The Colts drafted Parris Campbell, who I am high on as a prospect. This article isn’t about late first round rookie picks though, it’s about players you can acquire for basically free. You might not have heard of Dulin, as he played in college at Malone. What’s unique about him is that he posted a college dominator rating of 60.9%, good for the 99th percentile. He also broke out at the ripe old age of 18.3 (also 99th percentile). When you go to Malone college, and you want to get noticed by the NFL, you pretty much have to post those gaudy production numbers and the above athletic measurables.
It’s important to note that in 2020, T.Y. Hilton will be 31 and due zero guaranteed money at all. The Colts could conceivably save 14.5 million dollars if they cut him then. This may not happen, as they have a lot of cap space. But when projecting undrafted free agents, you need a lot of things to break your way. Devin Funchess only signed a one year deal with the Colts, and who knows if he will be re-signed. Chester Rogers is set to become an unrestricted free agent after 2019 as well.
By 2021, the top three wideouts on the team could be Deon Cain, a 2018 sixth rounder coming back from an ACL tear, the aforementioned Parris Campbell, and possibly Ashton Dulin. The overwhelming likelihood is that they continue to add to the position, but for Dulin to hit, it’s hard to think of a better set of circumstances for him to get and keep the job.
It can be a bit hard to find Dulin’s highlights, but luckily I found this video. The level of competition isn’t good, but good lord he pops. His contested catch ability comes into play a lot due to his quarterback not being good at football. Up until a few days ago, myfantasyleague didn’t even have him listed for picking up, so if you already had the primary free agency wave, you can probably find him hanging out there now.
Hope you enjoyed the breakdown of my couple favorite UDFA prospects to throw on taxi squads or the end of my bench. Go seek them out and add them!
Thank you all for taking the time to read my work. Hit me up on Twitter @DFF_Mike2 and let’s talk about why I’m probably wrong!