NFL Draft: OU's CeeDee Lamb says DeAndre Hopkins comparisons are 'huge compliment'
NORMAN — ESPN NFL Draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. compared former OU receiver CeeDee Lamb to DeAndre Hopkins on SportsCenter on Wednesday.
"You see the way he works and the way he competes and you see that with CeeDee Lamb," Kiper said in making the comparison. "CeeDee Lamb doesn't have 4.35 speed. Neither did DeAndre Hopkins. He was in that 4.55-4.57 range. CeeDee Lamb's in that 4.51 range.
"On the field, you don't want to have to deal with them if you're a cornerback because they bring physicality. A lot of these cornerbacks in the NFL don't want to be physical. They don't want to tackle. And if that's the case with CeeDee Lamb, that cornerback's going to be in a lot of trouble."
A little later on the same show, Lamb was asked about the comparison.
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"That's a huge compliment, especially coming from a guy like Mel," Lamb said. "DeAndre does a great job in the league, being one of those top receivers, being a guy that can lead a team, make impressive catches."
Hopkins was the No. 27 overall pick in the 2013 NFL Draft by the Houston Texans and has topped the 1,000-yard mark in five of the last six seasons. He was recently traded to the Arizona Cardinals, where he'll team up with former Sooners quarterback Kyler Murray.
Lamb figures to go higher than Hopkins did.
Football Outsiders has Lamb ranked as the top receiver in the class. ESPN's Todd McShay has Lamb as the second receiver off the board, going No. 12 overall to the Las Vegas Raiders in the middle of a stretch of three consecutive receivers taken.
Kiper's latest ratings of the top players from the class has Lamb as the No. 2 receiver and the No. 12 overall player. His most recent mock draft has Lamb going No. 17 overall to the Dallas Cowboys.
"I call him CeeDee Y.A.C., and that's yards after catch," Kiper said. "That's where he's at his best with the stiff arms, and real physical and rugged he is with the ball in his hands, how he competes for every catch."
At OU's Pro Day last month, Lamb said he had a draft-day outfit planned out, but declined to share specifics.
With the NFL Draft, scheduled to begin April 23, being held virtually this year, Lamb said he hadn't decided whether to wear his planned outfit or go with something more casual.
"I think I may wear a draft outfit or I could just wear a nice little jumpsuit," Lamb said.