2023 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Cedric Tillman

  • Cedric Tillman, 6-3/215

  • Wide Receiver

  • Tennessee

  • Cedric Tillman Scouting Report
    By Charlie Harry

  • Size mismatch
  • Makes catches over defenders
  • Use size and strength to box out defenders
  • Reliable hands
  • Late hands
  • Red-zone weapon
  • Possessional receiver to move the chains
  • Has some run-after-the catch ability
  • Tough to tackle

  • Weaknesses:
  • Lacks speed
  • Not twitchy
  • Not explosive
  • Not fast in and out of breaks
  • Lacks suddenness
  • Can’t stretch a defense with speed
  • Could struggle to separate from NFL corners

  • Summary: For the NFL, Tillman is a big receiver who presents a size mismatch. He has good hands and presents the danger of making leaping grabs over defensive backs. Helped by his height and weight, Tillman is able to box out defensive backs to make catches even when he is covered. Tillman shows nice technique, including late hands, to limit a defensive back’s ability to break up passes. In the NFL, Tillman would be a good weapon in the red zone given his ability to make catches over defenders.

    With the ball in his hands, Tillman has some run-after-the-catch skills, using his powerful frame and ability to turn into a running back to pick up yards in the open field. He uses his size to break tackles and can be tough for defensive backs to get to the ground.

    Tillman has some limitations for the NFL because he lacks twitch, is not explosive, and is very stiff. He will never be a huge separation wideout who can get open against pro cornerbacks because he is too stiff as a route-runner and does not have special speed. Tillman is going to struggle to get open from man coverage because man defenders will be able to run with him and keep him from getting open on speed alone. Thus, he won’t be a threat to stretch the field with speed; he could struggle to get open underneath; and he is too stiff to get separation via route-running.

    If Tillman were faster, he would be a definite first-round pick, but his stiffness and speed limitations make him more of a second-day prospect and likely a No. 2 receiver in the NFL. However, some similar receivers like Laquon Treadwell, Josh Doctson and N’Keal Harry have gone in the first round in years past, and Tillman could be viewed like them. The team that likes Tillman enough to select him could end up doing it on the second day of the 2023 NFL Draft.

    Player Comparison: Michael Pittman Jr. Tillman reminds me of a poor man’s version of Pittman. Pittman is faster and more athletic, but both are big, strong, physical, and have some stiffness. Pittman was a second-day pick in his draft class, and Tillman could go on Day 2 in the 2023 NFL Draft.


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