Anthony Schwartz could inject speed into Chicago Bears
If Anthony Schwartz were not training for the NFL, he would be training for the Olympics as a sprinter. He recorded the Florida State record in the 100M dash in high school. However, he went to Auburn to focus on football. He got on the field as a freshman, but as a true offensive weapon, who had 27 rush attempts to 22 receptions. From there, he developed more into a wide receiver before entering the NFL draft as a junior.
The college stats for the Auburn wide receiver are below.
Anthony Schwartz recently worked out at his Pro Day. Check out the size and athletic testing traits that Schwartz will bring into the 2021 NFL draft.
Traits Anthony Schwartz brings to the NFL
The speed that Schwartz brings is on a different level than most. He is a player that teams have to at least identify that he is on the field because of what he can do with his speed. Schwartz not only extends teams vertically with his speed, but horizontally as he is he not only can fly after the catch on drag routes, but Auburn often used him for jet sweep situations.
Schwartz is not only fast, he leverages angles and knows when to cut upfield to maximize his potential for big plays.
Where Anthony Schwartz must improve in NFL
He is still a bit closer to a gadget player than an NFL wide receiver. His route tree is pretty limited to go routes, jet sweeps, and drag routes. He can stretch the field deep, but his contested catch rate is below what you want from him. He is also up and down as a ball tracker. His best work is catching the ball near the line and turning upfield.
He is raw at reading defenses and understanding leverage and is not to be trusted on timing or anticipatory routes.
NFL comparison for Anthony Schwartz
There are obviously not many players who are quite as fast as Anthony Scwartz. When looking at a list of players with similar size and athleticism, the best on-field comparison in the NFL to Anthony Schwartz is Mecole Hardman. The Chiefs drafted Hardman due to his raw speed and what he can do with the ball in his hands.
At times it works, and Hardman can rip off 60-yard runs and receptions that change games. At other times, Hardman cannot even get on the field because the Chiefs do not trust him in particular packages or with particular routes.
You saw in the Super Bow the frustration of how raw he is as a wide receiver. You draft Hardman for the upside but have to understand the downside that comes with him. The same can be said with Schwartz.
Does Anthony Schwartz fit with Chicago Bears?
We know that Matt Nagy and Ryan Pace are both suckers for the gadget type who can add a versatile spark to the offense. With that in mind, Anthony Schwartz is almost certainly on the Bears radar.
From a special team’s perspective, he could be valued, but beyond that, they could get him on the field s a WR4 who can be schemed touches. When he gets on the field, he can be a playmaker.
The question is when he would get drafted. You would hope for a raw player who can add a spark would fall into the third round, but speed rises, and Schwartz could very well jump into round two because of it. At that cost, it seems a bit pricey.
Still, if he were to be drafted, his speed and versatility would put him over names like Riley Ridley and Javon Wims. If he could catch on, he would not be far off from getting slot work ahead of Anthony Miller as well.