Leading up to the NFL Combine, Ole Miss wide receiver D.K. Metcalf posted a picture of himself working out on Twitter. The photo went viral, and many people within the NFL community were floored with how muscular he was.
Oakland Raiders head coach Jon Gruden said that Metcalf was built like a house. The photo also led many people to believe that it was photoshopped.
“There's no photoshop in that picture,” Metcalf said while speaking to reporters at the NFL Combine. “I know the work I put in so I'm not worried about what other people are gonna say.”
The photo also led many to critique Metcalf. Many experts believed that he was too big to effectively play at wide receiver.
“They haven't met me yet,” Metcalf said. “They haven't seen 'too big' in seeing what I can do on the field or as a 40 or bench 27 reps, they haven't seen me yet, so you know they can compare me to other big receivers that have been unsuccessful but like I say, they haven't seen DK Metcalf.”
After enrolling at the University of Mississippi in 2016, Metcalf would sit out the majority of his freshman season due to a foot injury. He would return fully healthy for his redshirt freshman season, bringing in 646 receiving yards and seven touchdowns on 39 catches.
Entering his junior season, Metcalf was expected to be one of the best receivers in the SEC. Unfortunately, a neck injury would hamper his season, limiting him to just seven games. In his limited play time, he grabbed 26 receptions for 569 yards and five touchdowns. Despite his very limited action in college, many see Metcalf as a first-round prospect, with the potential to be drafted by the Redskins.
According to Kyle Crabbs of the Draft Network, “Metcalf enters the 2019 NFL Draft as a rare prospect, his blend of physicality and explosiveness have the ability to develop into a game-changing WR. Metcalf projects favorably to just about any system, he's fluid enough to run hard angled routes and big enough to win in the red zone. Metcalf offers vertical explosiveness as well. An early starter just scratching the surface of how good he can really be.”
Prior to the NFL Combine, there were many questions over Metcalf’s mobility. Due to his larger frame, a lot of analysts doubted whether or not he would be quick enough to beat NFL cornerbacks with his speed. Metcalf quickly answered those questions by running a 4.33 40-yard dash, the fifth fastest at the combine.
Metcalf’s jaw-dropping combine performance continued onto the bench reps. He tied with N’Keal Harry for the most bench reps at the combine by a wide receiver with 27. At the other combine stations, Metcalf continued to show off his freakish athletic ability by posting a 40.5-inch vertical jump, third highest for a wide receiver, and a 134-inch broad jump, fifth highest for a wide receiver.
Metcalf’s motivation to make it to the NFL comes from following in the footsteps of his father, Terrence Metcalf, who was an offensive guard with the Chicago Bears for seven years, which really shaped his son’s life.
“I know in ’06 before they went to the Super Bowl, I actually got a chance to go in the locker room after they won the NFC Championship so that's like a memory that stuck with me a lot,” Metcalf said. “I got to hold the NFC trophy. And like I say, just to be there in that setting, it was great.”
His father has also been giving him a lot of advice for the draft process. The most important lesson that had been taught to Metcalf by his dad was to understand his hard work will eventually get noticed, even if it doesn’t seem like it will.