First look at 2012 WR prospects

Updated: August 24, 2011, 2:27 PM ET
Scouts Inc.
When evaluating wide receivers, it is important to consider all aspects of their games -- separation skills, ball skills, big-play ability and competitiveness/toughness. Here's how we rank the top wide receivers on our initial 2012 draft board by skill set (draft-eligible underclassmen denoted with an asterisk), as well as a look at all receivers with a draftable grade, market trends at the position and 2011 Day 1 wide receiver picks.

[+] EnlargeJustin Blackmon
Chuck Cook/US PresswireSeparation skills and big-play ability are hallmarks of Justin Blackmon's game.

Separation Skills
The challenge when evaluating a receiver's separation skills is sifting through variables such as his supporting cast, the offensive system he plays in, and the types of defensive coverage and the level of competition he faces. While there's no exact formula, some of the key ingredients in separating from defenders include recognition, initial burst, change-of-direction skills and competitiveness.