SOTT Draft Profile: Marvin McNutt
The next few weeks here on State of the Texans we will be doing some draft profiles of some particular players who could possibly fit into the Texans plans. We are not going to try to piece together scouting reports, but we enlist help of bloggers who actually cover the respective player and their school.
In this profile we take another look at the wide receiver position once again and focus on Iowa Hawkeye, Marvin McNutt. At 6’3″ and 213 lbs. McNutt looks the part of a NFL wideout, and after a big senior season at Iowa, he has gotten some scouts attention.
We ask Ross from Black Hearts and Gold Pants, a site dedicated to the Iowa Hawkeyes more about Marvin McNutt.
Can you give us some background on McNutt?
Marvin McNutt came to Iowa in 2007 as a dual-threat quarterback and a reputation as a tremendous athlete in high school in St. Louis. Midway through the 2008 season, after it became clear that then-sophomore Ricky Stanzi (drafted by the Kansas City Chiefs last year) was going to be entrenched as the starting quarterback for the next few years, McNutt moved to wide receiver. He spent the rest of 2008 learning the nuances of the position, before emerging as a full-time starter in 2009. He quickly emerged as a major playmaker and serious touchdown threat (8 touchdowns in 2009, 8 in 2010, and 13 in 2011), as well as a phenomenal big-play weapon.
What are McNutt’s strengths and weaknesses?
McNutt has excellent body control and developed into a very good route runner during his tenure at Iowa. He also has very large, strong hands and is adept at making difficult catches. Given his touchdown totals, it probably won’t come as much surprise that he was also an excellent weapon around the end zone; he was a tremendous weapon on fade routes, in particular. He has two major weaknesses: he doesn’t have great speed and while his hands are good, they were occasionally inconsistent. He had drops on fairly routine catches a little more often than you would like to see out of an elite receiver, although it seemed to be mainly a concentration issue.
Is McNutt a big play wide receiver?
McNutt was definitely a big play weapon in college. He had several touchdown catches of 30+ yards, as well as several big catch-and-runs that didn’t result in scores. While he doesn’t have blazing speed, he was difficult to catch once he got going — he was rarely hauled down from behind. He was also a very tough player — he wasn’t afraid to go across the middle and take a big hit to make a catch and he played through several nagging, minor injuries.
What did he mean to the Iowa football program in 2011?
McNutt was a huge part of Iowa’s offense the past three seasons — he owns virtually every significant single season and career receiving record at Iowa. He was also a big fan favorite among Iowa fans, thanks to his penchant for making big plays and scoring touchdowns. He was also a very humble, unassuming guy, which further endeared him to Iowa fans. He’s going to be missed terribly next season and his absence will be an enormous hole for Iowa to fill on offense.
How do you see McNutt projecting at the NFL level?
I am notoriously poor at judging the ability of wide receivers to transition from college to the pros (I thought USC’s Mike Williams would be a monster in the NFL; oops), but I do think McNutt can be a solid pro receiver. I’m not certain if he’ll be a big downfield threat in the NFL (he’ll need to work at getting faster and be able to run very precise routes), but he should be a strong possession receiver and a legitimate weapon in the red zone. He has a good work ethic and he showed remarkable progress at Iowa. It’s worth remembering that he’s only played wide receiver for about 3.5 years — he didn’t play it in high school — so there’s still room for him to improve.