(Editor's Note: While the start of the 2018 NFL Draft isn't until April 26, it's never too early to profile some of the key participants. The staff of DallasCowboys.com intends to preview the landscape of the draft's top prospect, with an emphasis on possible Cowboys draft picks – from the first round to the last. Today's featured player is Colorado State wide receiver Michael Gallup.)
- Name:Michael Gallup
- Position: WR
- College:Colorado State
- Honors:Consensus All-American in 2017. Two-time all-conference selection, in 2016 and 2017. Biletnikoff Award finalist in 2017.
- Key Stat:From the time he transferred in from Butler Community College, Gallup displayed a penchant for racking up receptions. In his first season at Colorado State, he tallied 76 catches, averaging 16.7 yards per reception. Last season, he set a school record with 100 catches for 1,413 yards in just 13 games. That's an average of roughly eight receptions per game.
Where He's Projected:
This wide receiver class will be fun to figure out because of how tightly packed it is. There's only one receiver in this group that is universally accepted as a first-round talent, and that is Alabama's Calvin Ridley. After that, it's anyone's guess. Lump Gallup among that group of receivers. Depending on who you're talking to, he might go anywhere from the early second round to the third round. One thing is definitely clear: he is an upper echelon talent among this year's receiver class. If he lasts to the Cowboys' second-round pick, they'd likely have to take him there if they want him. It's doubtful he'll fall all the way to pick No. 81.
How He Helps The Cowboys:
We've talked plenty about how to fix this wide receiver corps, and Gallup fits that bill. He's not going to wow you with pure athleticism, but he is a polished route runner and could bring that ability to create separation down the field. His ability to rack up catches in colleges is a testament to this talent, as he is capable of getting himself open at all different levels of the passing game. Given a chance to ease himself into this veteran receiver group, it feels like a good bet that Gallup could make a contribution immediately.
- This is a guy that could be in the top three of the position or could be lower depending on how you feel about him.
- There are scouts that really like him and others that have him behind some of the other receivers, like Christian Kirk and DJ Moore.
- The film shows a player that is a good route runner and finisher.
- He'll need some initial work coming off the ball with his release but that shouldn't be too difficult to fix.
- His downfield separation is good with big play ability in his hands.
- What is most impressive about his work is his ability to carry his routes anywhere on the field.
- He is not limited to a few routes but is open to various types.
- Gallup gives you options, which can't be said about many of the receivers in this draft.
- I see him in that mix of second-round talent with the possibility of going before the Cowboys select at 50.