There are fourteen WRs battling for maybe six roster spots. One key to that competition is Keyarris Garrett, an UDFA out of Tulsa. Keyarris Garrett should have been drafted! No other way around it, but in the end the Panthers got an extra pick with this big Tulsa WR who will now be rocking the black and blue! This 6’4 221-pound big boy does no come from the SEC nor the Pac 12 and that stands to be one of the reasons he was still around when final calls were being made.
Basically a one-year wonder Garrett totaled 96 catches for 1588 yards and 8 end zone meetings last year and that was all as the team's only option to throw to, in 2012 he has 800 yards and 9 TDs then fought off injury for a year but it was nothing concerning as it was just a broken leg. (easy for me to say) He then came back strong leading CFB in receiving yards! He uses his body well and has very good acceleration for a man of his size and that paired with his 4.53 40-yard dash makes for a great combo when thinking of what you want in a WR.
Like most small school guys his routes will need help but with the best WR coach in the game I think that will not be an issue for very long. But he is showing great work ethic and the needed dedication to be great. Now it's not shock that undrafted guys have to fill a niche-role to become a successful member of a team and even more so when you are on a team that has not only depth at WR but high-end talent.
So are you guys ready for his role? Garrett caught 96 or 99 catchable passes last year! His 34 inch arms make him good for plucking the ball both high and out away from his frame. He does have limited run after catch ability but will get some as he shields out defenders. What does that all spell? Third down possession receiver! It is the clear fit for him, and now with Cotch gone we will need that guy who can move the chains on 3rd down, not looking for anything amazing he just needs to keep his attention on moving that ball down a little bit and creating a new set of downs. Garrett fits this mold and has the unselfish nature do become a productive Panther!
Could Garrett be the Key to the 2016 Draft Class? Maybe. Maybe not, but he was the nation’s leading receiver a year ago and went undrafted. That is a gift that I can’t wait to see on Opening Day and perhaps for years to come.