High School and College Career
Michael Jefferson’s college football journey began when he opted to join Alabama State after graduating from high school. In his freshman year, Jefferson quickly made an impact playing in 11 games for the Hornets. He finished with 12 receptions, 110 yards for an average of 9.2 yards per reception, and 4 touchdowns. Additionally, Jefferson had a solid quarterback rating of 80.2 when targeted by his quarterback.
The following year saw some setbacks for Jefferson. In 2019, now a sophomore, he played in only three games and made just 11 receptions for 142 yards, an average of 12.9 yards per catch, and one touchdown.
Jefferson’s junior year saw him return to form as he played in six games, hauling in 26 catches for 273 yards, an average of 10.5 yards per catch. He also scored two touchdowns, and his quarterback rating when targeted increased to 86.6.
At the end of the 2020 season, Jefferson transferred to Louisiana, where he would spend his remaining time in college football. As a senior in 2021, he played 14 games and made a total of 18 catches for 481 yards, an incredible average of 26.7 yards per catch, and caught four touchdowns. His QB rating when targeted by his quarterback was an elite 147.3.
In his final year of college football, Jefferson played as a fifth-year senior in 2022. Across 12 games, he made 51 catches for a total of 810 yards, averaging 15.9 yards per catch, and he caught seven touchdowns. His quarterback rating when targeted was a commendable 112.0.
Michael Jefferson Scouting Report Introduction
His fluidity and athleticism allow him to play with a certain grace, making his movements on the field appear effortless. His talent does not end there, however. One of his greatest strengths is his ability to set up defensive backs, positioning his body in such a way that it makes it difficult for them to make a play.
Another aspect of Jefferson’s game that sets him apart is his coordination and soft, reliable hands. He can make catches that could easily slip through the fingers of other players, and he can adjust to balls thrown behind him, which is an incredibly valuable skill in football. He is also excellent at digging out low throws, which may seem insignificant but can make all the difference in a game.
Jefferson is a natural pass-catcher with a level of focus that sets him apart. He is able to snatch the ball out of the air, using his reliable hands and impressive concentration to make even the most difficult catches look easy. He has the ability to make acrobatic catches seem routine, which is a testament to just how talented he is.
Overall, Michael Jefferson is the kind of player that any coach would be lucky to have on their team. His level of skill and concentration is unmatched, and his ability to set up defensive backs and make acrobatic catches can change a game’s outcome. If he continues to play at this level, there is no doubt that he will have a successful career in football.
Michael Jefferson, it seems as though his upper-body strength and quick hands make him a tough receiver to jam at the line. This makes him ultra-reliable in short yardage situations. Jefferson’s ability to act as a perimeter blocker in the run game helps his team move the ball downfield. When his team is running the ball and trying to get a gain on the outside, he’s capable of blocking defenders to create space for the ball carrier.
Jefferson’s effectiveness in contested-catch situations is another aspect of his game that sets him apart. He’s also skilled at high-pointing the ball, can quite easily outmuscle defensive backs in those situations.
Another one of Jefferson’s strengths is his ability to track the ball downfield. When his quarterback launches the ball on a long throw, Jefferson is capable of maintaining his focus and running under the ball for a catch.
He doesn’t have the speed to take the top off a defense. He’s not going to blow past a defensive back as his straight-line speed is not elite. This lack of threat may stem from his comfort level in traffic (a huge plus). He doesn’t need separation to have success so it wasn’t a top priority for him at the collegiate level, but NFL corners will be stickier. He doesn’t need speed to create that seaparation, but he needs to use his hands and route running ability. There’s no reason why he won’t be able to in the NFL.
Michael Jefferson is the 169th prospect on our draft big board.