• Wed. Feb 28th, 2024
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Devontez Walker

 

North Carolina Tarheels
Position: Wide Receiver
6’2” 200 lbs
Age: 22
Draft Eligible: 2024
Devy Digest WR Rank: 11

Stats




Who is Devontez Walker?


Devontez Walker has a very entangled history from a luck standpoint. A 3* in the composites, Walker attended West Charlotte High in North Carolina. As a High School prospect, Walker played both sides of the ball and did what he could to help his team, even if it was a detriment to his stats and not being able to fully showcase himself. Walker did not play football in 2019 and initially committed to North Carolina Central in 2020, but football was canceled by the program due to COVID-19. Walker sought and was granted a transfer and elected to attend Kent St and was with the program in 2021 and appeared in 8 games after missing two full years. The next year, Walker would be named a starter and made an immediate impact for the team and showed out on the biggest stage against Georgia where he made a highlight reel as he reached 23.1MPH and earned his way into the power 5 and transferred to North Carolina. Walker participated in spring camp and built an instant rapport with Drake Maye, even into fall camp, expectations were high, and a week out from the season opener, the NCAA stated Walker was ineligible due to transferring twice. The NCAA has been giving out transfer waivers like candy on Halloween but chose to make an exception with Walker who only transferred in 2020 because the program he attended canceled football and he needed to find a place to play.

Furthermore, Devontez Walker requested a transfer waiver before entering into the portal and was granted that waiver, and the NCAA for some odd reason took it back out of the blue and Walker was forced to miss the first portion of the 2023 season. Since being reinstated, Walker has quickly become an electric player and the player everyone hoped he would be.

Advance Metrics courtesy of Campus 2 Canton


Keep in mind when looking at these charts that Walker did not play the first two years out of High School and his third year, was essentially after missing two years of live game play.

Strengths


Devontez Walker brings with him speed for days and after being clocked at over 23MPH in game speed, that speed is evident and defenses must respect that. If a corner decides to bump him at the line, Walker has a great release package to elude the jab to his chest. Walker will use nifty footwork and swim attack to thwart the defender. As an older prospect, Walker also brings good play strength to the table, while he isn’t a physical player, he brings that strength to smaller corners. Walker understands his speed is his main asset and can slow play a defender and then take off with quick acceleration. Walker has a knack for making plays, he’s electric with the ball in his hands, and watching him mix his speed is just masterful to watch. Walker tends to stick to go, posts, corners, and short to line of scrimmage plays where he can operate in space and create.

Improvements/Concern


Walker is an older prospect he is 22 years old whereas most draft eligible players will be 20. Walker essentially missed two years of football which was a crucial age where most develop and learn new traits to their game. Devontez Walker isn’t the greatest route runner, far too often he relies on his speed and athleticism to get by the defender. Walker has a limited route tree, it could be a situation where coaches want to accentuate his strengths and not ask him to run a full route tree. Walker isn’t physical at the catch point, he doesn’t go up and snag the ball away, that’s not the type of player he is. Walker can be physical off the line to get to where he needs to go, but his game can be described as finesse, and there's nothing wrong with that, it’s just a matter of what play style you like as a receiver at the next level. Walker has bulked up to 200 lbs, the added weight could help combat that but from the tape that we’ve seen, it’s still not something we label as a strength of his. Walker is in a tough position, he has two years of eligibility remaining but with Drake Maye leaving after the year, Walker should follow suit and not get involved in a rebuild at the college level, he’s also 22, so he needs to go as being a 23 year old prospect in the 2025 NFL draft, will not sound appealing to teams wanting a receiver in the early rounds. He needs to make the most of the remaining games he has left and then springboard that with the NFL combine.

Devy Value


Walker was a devy buy all offseason and during his ineligibility, now that window has passed and if you don’t have him, you’ll have to overspend. On the flip side, if you do have him and are willing to trade him if you don’t need a body at the WR position, you could probably get a good package for him as Walker has excelled since being allowed to play this year, if you have fears about his play style and age, this is the time to do it.

NFL Outlook


Devontez Walker will run a good 40 and by all indications, is an above average athlete who should test well in all other aspects at the NFL combine. Add to that his tape, even with a subpar supporting cast at Kent State, he showed out in the biggest games for them and at North Carolina, has injected life back into Drake Maye, Walker is a difference maker and day two draft capital seems well within his range of outcomes. He is an older prospect and that is a concern.