The Colts selected wide receiver from Cincinnati Alec Pierce in the 2nd round. Can Piece be an impactful player for the Colts as a rookie?
- Name: Alec Pierce
- Height: 6’3
- Weight: 211 lbs.
- Hand Size: 9”
- Arm Length: 33”
- Combine Stats: 40 Time: 4.41 sec | Vertical: 40.5 inches | Broad Jump: 129 inches | 3 Cone: 7.13 sec | 20 yd shuttle: 4.28 sec
- 2021 Stats (14 games): 52 catches, 884 yards (17 ypc), 8 TDs
- 2020 Stats (6 games): 17 catches, 315 yards (18.5 ypc), 3 TDs
- 2019 Stats (12 games): 37 catches, 652 yards (17.6 ypc), 2 TDs
Games Watched: Indiana, Notre Dame, Tulsa, ECU, Tulane
- Tremendous combination of size, length, speed and athleticism
- Soft, natural hands and consistently high points the ball.
- He does a great job of tracking the ball and adjusting to it in the air.
- Plays well in traffic, shielding defenders off and making tough catches.
- Smooth in and out of cuts.
- He shows good effort and willingness in as a blocker.
- Drop rate (7.1%) is slightly higher than average; usually just focus drops.
- He is not a threat after the catch.
- Releases at the line of scrimmage are limited; he doesn’t show a variety of moves to consistently create separation.
- He doesn’t consistently separate down the field
- Play speed looks slower than 40-yard dash score.
- He doesn’t run a wide variety of routes
- 3 year starter
- 3 star prospect in high school
- 2021 All AAC Second Team
Pierce is a big bodied, athletic receiver who jumped out of the building at the NFL Combine. With the Bearcats, he developed a good connection with Desmond Ridder and was their clear #1 receiver for the past season as well as being a 3 year starter. He has very good hands and does his best work in traffic. He locates the ball, even when stuck to the defensive back, adjusts his body well and high points the ball perfectly; he makes a lot of great tough catches in traffic. The way he tracks the ball is elite. He has good, soft hands and catches the ball away from his body, and although his drop rate is slightly higher than average, that can be contributed to focus drops and not poor technique or body catching. While he doesn’t run a variety of routes, he is smooth in the ones he does run; he primarily runs go’s, outs and hooks. Despite his great athletic scores at the combine, he has not proven to be a “yards after catch” threat and only averages 3.7 yards after the catch (which is tied for 377th in college football). His play speed does not match his 40 yard-dash. Pierce struggles to gain separation down the field and that is due in part to a lack of different releases at the line of scrimmage; he primarily relies on a “shuffle cut” style of release at the line of scrimmage. As a blocker, he shows good strength, balance and effort that suggests he will be a very good blocking receiver in the NFL and can be relied upon in run blocking situations. Pierce projects as a high-end #2 complimentary receiver or low end #1 in the NFL if his ceiling is reached. His size, athleticism, catching and tracking ability will keep him in the league and on the field for awhile.
NFL Comparison: Mike Williams
Route Running: 30/40
Run After Catch: 13/20
Tracking/Adjusting to the Ball: 17/20
Play Speed: 11/15
Balance/Body Control: 12/15
Special Teams Ability: No
FINAL GRADE: 76
A grade of 76 is a score of a player who projects to have an impact in year 1, but will require good players around him to truly maximize his potential. It also indicates someone who has the potential to be a future difference maker, but who’s ceiling is probably limited to that of a low end WR1 or high end WR2.
Can he help the Colts this year?
The short answer is yes. As of right now, he should compete with Parris Campbell for the #2 receiver spot and should be a good possession receiver with some vertical capabilities. If given the right opportunities, he should be a 40-45 catch, 500-600 yard receiver next year and that would be a big help to Michael Pittman who is the only true proven receiving threat on the team.