2020 Raiders Draft Prospect Profile
Name: James Proche
Position: Wide Receiver
Weight: 193 pounds
Despite his lack of catch radius, due to his height, Proche catches just about everything thrown in his vicinity. Regardless of route, down/distance or proximity of corner, Proche opens the throwing window for his quarterback. Another aspect of this near-elite trait is the tracking. With excellent hand/eye coordination, even when downfield, look for the former SMU product to adjust. make no mistake, Proche displays enough confidence in securing the ball, he will stab out the arm, securing the pass with one hand.
With shorter strides that make up ground rapidly, Proche exhibits the requisite burst to function very well on the outside. Bluntly put, his long speed should translate at the next level.
The entire route tree appears open for Proche. When you watch his SMU film, look for the nuance as well as the overarching main aspects paints the whole picture. With footwork and slight head and shoulder fakes, he creates separation based on technical prowess.
More important that top end speed, Proche keeps corners guessing with his feet. From snapping off an out or crossing their feet on the double move, he wins with nimbleness. On top of that, the uncanny knowledge of getting a foot down remains one of his most underrated qualities.
While the Gruden offense makes Derek Carr look more accurate than he ever has, the receiver corps is the weakest link of the offense. Tyrell Williams, initially signed as a number-one, shows absolutely no signs of being the go-to receiver. His hands fail at crucial times. Additionally, he cannot gain any separation downfield, at all. Next, Hunter Renfrow, at best, should remain the fourth receiver. Granted, he possesses solid hands. However, the lack of separation bogs him down. In an offense, only so much scheming can create openings for wideouts. Lastly, the back end of the rotation continues to underwhelm. The Raiders traded a draft pick for Trevor Davis, only to cut him. Also, they overspent for Keelan Doss, only to sporadically activate him for games.
Meanwhile, Proche will not cost the Raiders a first or early second day selection. Plus, if they decide to select a wideout in the first round, drafting Proche still makes complete sense. Within the Raiders’ offense, Proche doesn’t need to be the prime option. In fact, he could slide into either the slot or outside. Blessed with quicks and hands, Proche presents defense with someone to pay attention to.
With all of the attention surrounding Derek Carr’s immediate future, enhancing the receiving corps from all levels could help. If the Raiders believe that Carr holds the key to their future, the time surround him with talent is now. More importantly, the receiving corps needs twitchy athletes like Proche to prevent defenses from sitting on routes and getting comfortable.