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Wide receiver Tre’Quan Smith is an explosive play waiting to happen

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Chick-fil-A Peach Bowl - Auburn v Central Florida Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images

Playing in Scott Frost’s entertaining, creative offense, wide receiver Tre’Quan Smith excelled in 2017. Smith caught 59 balls last season for 1171 yards - a ridiculous 19.8 yards per reception - and 13 touchdowns. Smith’s physical nature and ability to break off a big play is exactly what the Seattle Seahawks look for in an outside receiver and at 6-2 and 210 pounds, he has the frame of one too. As a likely day three selection, Smith would make sense as the latest in a long line of mid-round receivers brought in by the Seahawks.

Route Running

At UCF, Smith ran a full compliment of routes and was consistently a threat to bring down a deep ball for a touchdown. With long arms and a strong physique, Smith was aggressive at the top of his routes and plays physically. Smith lined up in the slot often and displayed a good understanding of zones, finding space and giving his quarterback an easy completion. As a deep threat, Smith is able to get on top of defensive backs and take them out of the play.

Smith’s releases need refining but there were flashes of outstanding ability using his hands to beat press coverage.

Leverage/Body Position

Smith’s body type and ceiling will likely see his long-term future on the outside, but it was apparent why Frost used him in the slot so often. Smith gets in front of defensive backs consistently and is able to use his length to make up for poor positioning.

Importantly for Russell Wilson and Seattle, Smith excelled in the scramble drill, working back to the quarterback, sitting in space and bailing his signal caller out.

Hands

One of Smith’s greatest strengths is his ability to negate under-throws by reaching back over defensive backs and corralling passes he has no business getting his hands on.

Smith’s greatest weakness is dropping passes he has no business dropping. Too often his quarterback will hit him in the hands only to see the ball bounce off and fall harmlessly to the turf — or worse, into the waiting hands off a defensive back.

Quickness/Agility

Smith comes out of his breaks with great agility and is able to turn up-field after the catch with fluidly. On underneath routes, he’ll separate consistently and then go to work after the catch.

Body Control

With outstanding length and a high catch radius, Smith has the makings of an outstanding jump ball receiver. He’s able to high point the ball really well and can play above the rim consistently. Smith bailed out under-throws and misses on a consistent basis. His body control on jump balls is terrific as he contorts and turns his ball fluidly.

Blocking

Blocking is a point of pride for Seahawks’ receivers and you see that in Smith’s game as well. He takes it personally and plays with great tenacity as a blocker.

Overall, Smith is a lot like the other possession receivers the Seahawks have brought in. He fits the mold and skill set they’ve been chasing for years, but has a long way to go before he can be a regular starter on the outside in an NFL offense. The selection of Smith could be seen as duplicative of Amara Darboh, but similar skill sets hasn’t been a deterrent at the receiver position for Seattle previously.