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Simmons' intangibles add value as prospect

If TJ Simmons’ draft projection was based solely on his personality and outlook, he’d be a first rounder. WVU’s Liberty Bowl MVP would be a great addition to any team in that regard, and his positive view and work ethic will give him a shot to hook on with some team as a free agent.

Playing in 30 games and starting 21 after transferring from Alabama, Simmons played all four receiver positions for the Mountaineers, displaying some versatility that will be of value for those teams needing a jack-of-all-trades pass-catcher who can learn and man any spot on the field.

Simmons was consistent throughout his three years with the Mountaineers catching 86 passes for 1,197 yards and nine touchdowns. He also showed the ability to get upfield, turning some shorter catches into good gains and providing the occasional big play on deep balls. He averaged 17.4 yards per catch as a senior, ranking him seventh in the Big 12.

Simmons’ Pro Day physical measurements were impressive. Without an ounce of discernible extra weight, he checked in at at 6′ 1 3/8″ and 208 pounds. His hand measurement was 9 3/8″ and his wingspan 75 1/2″. He put up 13 reps on the 225-pound bench press, had a vertical jump of 32″ and a broad jump of 10′.

In speed drills, the numbers weren’t quite as good. He had a 4.59 second 40-yard dash, with 10-yard and 20-yard splits of 2.64 and 1.50, respectively. His 20-yard shuttle time was 4.55, and his 3-cone drill time was 7.22.

Outlook: Simmons was a solid player for the Mountaineers. However, the lack of top end speed and the absence of dominant performances over his career will likely put him into the free agent class, although a late round pick isn’t out of the question. He’s an effective blocker and route runner, catches the ball well outside of a few body traps, and as noted at the top, will be an excellent teammate and energy guy in the locker room.

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