Athletic Aptitude Battery™ (A2B™) 2016 Wide Receivers

In this entry, we are looking at what the A2B™ has to say about the top 5 wide receivers of the 2016 draft class (based on rankings from CBSsports.com1). Our previous posts described the A2B™ in more detail, but for the newcomer the important thing to keep in mind is that A2B™ scores are obtained using only data from their NFL combine performance. As a further note, remember the A2B™ Domain Scores are relative to other NFL-caliber athletes. That is, don’t take an Athleticism or Speed rating of 10 to mean your grandma could beat the guy in a push-up contest or foot race (unless we are talking about Steve Urkel’s Grandmama). Below are the A2B Player Type, Domain Scores, and NFL Potential scores for each of these well-ranked wide receiver prospects.


Player Types

Looking at the Player Types, we see that there are only “Possession” and “Slot/Returner” receivers. This lack of any top-tier wide receiver A2B™ Player Types (“Elite” and “Speedster”) is uncommon when compared to past wide receiver draft classes. Despite their rarity (as noted last time), there are typically a handful of prospects that fall into these valuable A2B™ Player Types in a given year.

Domain Scores

  • Coleman, Doctson, and Fuller are all good overall athletes (>80th percentile for athleticism), but Treadwell appears to have limited athleticism based on his combine data (10th percentile).
  • Although Doctson and Fuller showed high overall athleticism, they were not especially fast given their excellent athleticism (i.e., speed scores were < 50).
    • In fact, Josh Doctson was substantially slower than we would expect given his excellent overall athleticism (Speed score of 10).
  • Doctson and Treadwell both have higher SEP scores compared to the other prospects.
  • Tyler Boyd is a below average athlete across the board (by NFL standards) based on his NFL combine performance.

NFL Potential

None of these wide receivers show exceptional levels of potential as receivers or returners. In a typical year, there are at least of few prospects with A2B™ NFL Potential scores above 70 and the 2016 wide receiver class does not have a single prospect falling in this range. That being said, Corey Coleman does have decent potential as wide receiver and returner (roughly speaking, scores > 60 put you in the top 25% of WR since 2000), which may be useful for a prospective team.

General Conclusions

There are a few points NFL teams may want to consider. Based on the A2B™ Player Types and NFL Potential scores of these top-ranked prospects, organizations with a need at receiver should be aware that there are no athletic standouts. That being said, in this entry, we only provide the A2B™s for the top five ranked wide receivers according to CBS Sports. These are not the top five ranked wide receiver prospects based on the A2B™. Identifying prospects with good A2B™ scores relative to their expert ranking could help teams make “value” picks.

In reference to specific players, there are also considerations to note. First, past data suggests that Tyler Boyd’s athletic profile may not translate well to the NFL. Second, even though Josh Doctson is a tremendous overall athlete, his lack of unique speed may limit his NFL potential. The athletic profiles of Fuller, Doctson, and Treadwell are in line with those of more average NFL wide receivers. A caveat to these scores is that are based only on the available combine data. Players did not always participate in every combine event (e.g., Treadwell didn’t do the 40yd dash), which obviously impacts the accuracy of scores. If players complete these events on their Pro Days, we can easily adjust their A2B™s accordingly.

In the next entry, we will discuss the 2016 cornerback class.