Wide receiver Devin Funchess had a more than respectable collegiate career at Michigan. For two straight seasons (2013 and 2014) he was selected to the second team All-Big Ten, even after switching to wide receiver from tight end following the end of the 2013 season. In 11 games as a starter in 2014, he grabbed 62 total catches, four of the resulting in touchdowns. Against Ohio State, he had seven catches for a total of 108 yards, demonstrating his ability to perform in a big game. He did miss one game due to an injured leg, but it certainly does not appear to be serious. In 2013, he was named the Big Ten Tight End of the Year, demonstrating a bit of versatility on his part. In fact, he had 748 yards at a tight end that season, the most ever recorded in Michigan during a single season.
At the combine, Funchess ran a 4.70 second 40-yard dash, which will likely need to improve if he is going to excel at the pro level. At the pro day, he was much fast at 4.47 and 4.53 seconds. His other results include 17 reps on the bench press, a 30.5 inch vertical jump, and a 122.0 inch broad jump. At 6’4” and 232 pounds, Funchess is a big receiver that exhibits the ability to create a mismatch with corners when in the red zone. He has some long legs that allow him to quickly cover ground when running a straight line, and he transitions well from the catch to a full out run. Another strength rests in his ability to use his size to win the battle against press coverage, and he has great control over his body, allowing him to catch the high throws that few others can. He also plays a physical brand of football, not being afraid to use his hands to separate from the defender at the top of the route. He appears to be best at intermediate routes.
Graphic via fansided
A notable weakness that needs to be overcome is his lack of vertical talent. He needs to gain a bit of speed and physicality, as he will not win many 50/50 balls due to his lack of control and less than stellar use of his hands. He had 20 dropped passes over the last three seasons, which if left to continue will certainly frustrate Cam Newton. He also has an inconsistent passing attack, and tends to get into to too much of a routine in terms of his play routes and speed. if this continues at the pro level, defenders will be able to easily read him.
With maturity, Funchess appears to be a great fit to benefit the high octane offense that Newton is trying to run in Carolina. He needs to gain consistency, and must develop more sure fire hands that will enable to run off the catch, much like he did at Michigan.
Graphic via bleacherreport