2018 Raiders Prospect Profile
Name: Marcell Ateman
School: Oklahoma State
Weight: 216 pounds
Ateman secures the ball with a quick stab. As a result, Ateman does not have to break stride. In addition, he shows no fear in catching across, below, or above his frame. During his career, Ateman won his share of jump balls. Contested passes found him instead of the defensive backs. This allows him to high point the ball with confidence.
While in Stillwater, Ateman showed a steady burst. Although he does not win with pure speed or separation, Ateman will get to a second gear and outrun defenders. His stride, due to his height, appears elongated. Yet, he finds a way to put daylight between himself and the DB
Ateman will need to drive hard on his routes. At times, corners would lag in front of him because he would tip the route early. In the NFL, defenders will recognize this early and jump the route, causing a deflection or interception. On deeper routes, Ate looks more comfortable. Under those circumstances, he needs to refine his short and intermediate patterns. Surprisingly, Ateman’s awareness and body control serves as a plus.
As mentioned, Ateman excels on outs and go routes. However, he can turn a quick slant into a touchdown. With post patterns, Ateman should be able to defeat safety help. Occasionally, Oklahoma State forced the ball to him vertically, whether open or not.
Ateman needs to remember his advantages over most corners. In the run game, he will not consistently anchor on a defender. This goes to a need to play with a chip on his shoulder. Consequently, Ateman will need to turn up the nastiness. Ateman owns a stout stiff-arm to disengage from tacklers. A few of those and the message will be heard.
With the Raiders desperate for playmakers at receiver, Ateman provides an option. His fluidity, big play ability, and size, Ateman would give Derek Carr a complement to Cooper. If the Raiders do retain Crabtree, Ateman could sit third or fourth on the depth chart, looking to ascend. Immediately, he would be the third-best receiver on the team. Ateman would pay dividends in the redzone. Derek Carr throws a great fade. Now, imagine a 6’4” wideout with leaping ability in the end zone. Overall, Ateman fits Gruden’s preference for bigger wideouts. Currently, he is a Day 2 prospect. Not to mention, a WR corps of Cooper, Crabtree, Ateman, Roberts, and Patterson looks promising.