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Jalen Saunders | Wide Receiver

Team: Oklahoma Sooners
Age / DOB:  (21) / 9/30/1992
Ht / Wt:  5'9' / 160

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Recent News

Jets selected Oklahoma WR Jalen Saunders with the No. 104 overall pick in the 2014 NFL draft.
Saunders (5-foot-8 3/4, 165) was a three-year starter under Bob Stoops, collecting 203 catches for 3,085 yards (15.2 YPR) and 26 touchdowns. He added three TDs on punt returns, which is where Saunders will likely make his living in the NFL. He has 4.44 speed and a 10-foot-2 broad jump. Saunders is too small to excel as a perimeter receiver, and not physical enough to handle a heavy workload in the slot. May 10 - 12:30 PM

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Date:

ESPN's Mel Kiper believes Oklahoma WR Jalen Saunders could provide good mid-round value.

Saunders (5-foot-9, 160 pounds) is an undersized "but savvy and quick receiver" with a history of productivity, Kiper opined. The slot receiver "has a good sense of space and how to find cracks in coverage. ... but he needs to gain a little strength," Kiper wrote. The draft maven also tossed out Pittsburg State's John Brown (4.34 40-yard dash) as a deep WR sleeper.
Mar 31 - 8:15 PM

CBS Sports' Rob Rang believes teams could have an issue with Oklahoma WR Jalen Saunders' "shockingly slow" shuttle times.

Rang writes it raises "questions about how much Oklahoma's spread attack exaggerated his overall athleticism." Saunders' pro day short shuttle was 4.42 seconds, which would have been good for 37th of 39 receivers at the Combine. "Similarly slow times came in the long shuttle (11.56) and 3-cone (7.29), results which also would have ranked among the slowest at the Combine among wide receivers." Saunders is an absolutely joystick with the ball in his hands, so the times are a bit puzzling.
Source: CBS Sports
Mar 13 - 11:52 AM

Oklahoma WR Jalen Saunders will attend the Senior Bowl.

Saunders is a lean slot receiver that is a joystick during his routes and in the open field. That lack of ideal size will likely, and possibly unfairly, keep Saunders out of the first two rounds, but his return ability should be sought after at the end of the second day.
Tue, Dec 17, 2013 01:29:00 PM

Oklahoma senior WR Jalen Saunders caught five passes for 39 yards and the game winning touchdown in the school's 33-24 win over Oklahoma State.

Saunders also rushed for 49 yards on two carries and added a 64 yard punt return touchdown. Yes, he is lean and short, but get Saunders in the open field and he works his magic. He translates to the slot and could be a third-round selection with return value.
Sat, Dec 7, 2013 03:40:00 PM

Oklahoma senior WR Jalen Saunders scored on a 91 yard punt return in the school's 48-10 win over Iowa State.

Saunders showed his open field movement skills, something that has been limited this season due to poor quarterback play. Saunders does not meet typical height and weight requirements, which might lead to a negative evaluation from some scouts, but we love him as a slot prospect. He also caught three passes for 15 yards.
Sat, Nov 16, 2013 03:50:00 PM

Oklahoma senior WR Jalen Saunders caught six passes for 153 yards and one touchdown in the school's 38-30 win over Texas Tech.

Saunders transferred from Fresno State prior to last season and has found a home in the slot. He is hurt by poor quarterback play, but Saunders found space behind coverage today for a long catch and run of 76 yards. Due to his lean size, Saunders might be a third-round pick.
Sat, Oct 26, 2013 08:38:00 PM

Oklahoma senior WR Jalen Saunders will "face an uphill battle to make an NFL roster," according to NFL.com's Dan Greenspan.

At the moment, Saunders is a rather polarizing prospect. Lauded by CBS Sports' Dane Brugler as the potential top senior WR prospect and by former NFL scout John Middlekauff as a DeSean Jackson clone, Saunders broke out after he was declared eligible midway through the 2012 season, logging a school-record 15 catches against Notre Dame. Greenspan believes the receiver's 5-foot-9, 160-pound frame may be too slight to absorb NFL punishment. The Fresno State transfer has one more season to put those doubts to rest.
Source: NFL.com
Tue, Jul 23, 2013 04:40:00 PM

CBS Sports' Dane Brugler believes Oklahoma's Jalen Saunders could emerge as the top senior WR.

"Although his size and skill set might limit him to the slot at the next level, don't be surprised if Saunders separates himself as the top senior receiver on some draft boards," Brugler writes. Again, we agree, as Saunders has some real ability from the slot to separate with quickness in close quarters. Some have already compared him to Desean Jackson, but Saunders will have to show "plus" outside skills this season to project to that spot in the NFL.
Source: CBS Sports
Thu, Jul 11, 2013 10:07:00 AM

Oklahoma senior WR Jalen Saunders drew a comparison to DeSean Jackson from former NFL scout John Middlekauff.

Middlekauff calls Saunders a "special player" but does note he isn't as "twitchy" as Jackson. We should note Middlekauff was on the Fresno State staff when Saunders joined the program, but that shouldn't take away from the receiver's obvious talent. He emerged as a got to presence in the slot for the Sooners, but there could be questions surrounding Oklahoma's passing game this year.
Wed, Jul 10, 2013 04:13:00 PM

Oklahoma senior WR Jalen Saunders "is as smooth as it gets," according to Scouts Inc.'s Kevin Weidl.

Weidl does wish Saunders was bigger, as the slot receiver is listed at 5'9/160 pounds. He wasn't able to play a full season for the Sooners last year after transferring from Fresno State, but Saunders has great burst and vision to make oncoming tacklers miss after the catch.
Wed, Jun 5, 2013 10:53:00 AM

Oklahoma senior WR Jalen Saunders only dropped 3.1 percent of the passes thrown his way.

According to Greg Peshek of The Sideline View, "Saunders is one of the more safe prospects statistically at this stage." On top of his low drop percentage, "he also gained 7.1 yards after the catch when Kenny Stills only averaged 3.1 yards after the catch in the same offense." We love Saunders' projection to the slot, but many will question his rail thin frame.
Wed, May 8, 2013 08:46:00 AM

Oklahoma junior WR Jalen Saunders will play in the Cotton Bowl despite being arrested earlier this month.

Saunders and a teammate were arrested on "complaints of misdemeanor marijuana possession during a traffic stop... just a few hours after the Sooners defeated TCU to end the regular season." Saunders has been a critical piece of the Sooners passing game success and is easily the team's best receiver. His quickness to separate form the slot is outstanding.
Source: ESPN
Sun, Dec 30, 2012 07:37:00 PM

Oklahoma junior WR Jalen Saunders was arrested over the weekend on a complaint of possession of a controlled substance.

Defensive back Cortez Johnson faces the same charges. ESPN's Jake Trotter broke the news and later added that the substance was marijuana. Saunders has been an absolute stud after being declared eligible following a transfer from Fresno State. He is the Sooners best offensive weapon and we expect him to return to Oklahoma next season.
Mon, Dec 3, 2012 08:29:00 AM

Oklahoma junior WR Jalen Saunders recorded seven receptions for 108 yards and one interception Saturday against TCU.

We doubt Saunders declares for the Draft due to a shortened season, but we hope he does. The junior is an absolute weapon from the slot, utilizing quick cuts and elusiveness in routes and after the catch. He has become one of the Sooners top offensive weapons, if not the most important.
Sat, Dec 1, 2012 03:38:00 PM