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Carlos Henderson could make life simpler for whoever Denver’s QB is

DEC 23 Armed Forces Bowl - Louisiana Tech v Navy
Photo by Matthew Pearce/Icon Sportswire

Scouting Notes

Carlos Henderson could make life simpler for whoever Denver’s QB is

“A quarterback’s best friend” is typically a phrase meant to describe a tight end or running back who provides safe and reliable traits on a snap-to-snap basis as a receiver. But the Denver Broncos don’t have a standout pass-catching threat at either position, despite having two quarterbacks who could benefit greatly from receiving help at both spots. That may be where Carlos Henderson enters the picture, as the third receiver Denver has desperately needed in their offense the past few years.

Why will quarterbacks love Henderson? The 5-11, 200-pound receiver is built similarly to Jarvis Landry, and brings the same edge and post-catch ability to the position that makes the Dolphins wide receiver such a deadly short-intermediate area target for Ryan Tannehill. Henderson’s ability to create offense with the ball in his hands will consistently put Denver in advantageous down-and-distance situations, as he did often at Louisiana Tech.

Not only does Henderson have running back-like vision and elusiveness in the open field, but he plays with a nasty edge to his game that makes him tough to bring down, even for bigger defenders. His build is layered with muscle, and Henderson never shies away from contact on the field, instead choosing to dish it out whenever possible. Henderson has no qualms about working the middle of the field, aggressively breaking off inside routes to cross safeties’ faces and reel in tough grabs. He’s already begun to show off his ability to turn a quick hitter into a big gain during Denver’s OTAs.

But as the above tweet indicates, Henderson also brings deep speed and excellent ball tracking to an offense, traits that will be important if the strong-armed Paxton Lynch is inserted into the lineup. He’s a mid-4.4 speed guy who can slip behind a defense and make vertical plays when needed as well, opening up the route tree for the rookie.

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Jon Ledyard

Jon Ledyard has been writing about the NFL draft for several years now, and is thrilled to be bringing creative content and unique analysis to NDT Scouting. He lives with his wife Brittany and four-month old daughter Caylee in mid-western Pennsylvania. Jon is also the host of the Locked on NFL Draft and Breaking the Plane podcasts, while covering the Steelers for scout.com. The Office, LOST, weightlifting, ultimate frisbee, grilling, Duke basketball, and all Pittsburgh pro sports teams are his greatest passions.

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