The New York Giants stole rookie wide receiver Jalin Hyatt in the third round of this year’s draft after the Tennesee product was projected to be drafted in the first round. Hyatt slid into round three and New York knew they couldn’t pass up; head coach Brian Daboll executed a trade to select Hyatt with the 73rd overall pick in the draft.
The Giants have high expectations for Hyatt, a playmaker that some are already describing as one of the fastest players in the NFL. But apparently, it’s not Hyatt’s speed that makes him such an elite prospect; according to former Tennessee offensive coordinator Alex Golesh, it’s Hyatt’s work ethic that led the speedy receiver to breakout as one of the top wide receivers in the country last year.
Jalin Hyatt can run any route
In a recent interview with the Giants Huddle Podcast, Golesh described Hyatt as a “high-level receiver” that can “run any route.”
“I think you can either play receiver or you can’t. I think when that question comes up, it’s because people don’t understand what we do and that’s exactly how we want it. When people don’t understand what’s going on, they tend to create reasons why it should work or shouldn’t work. He’s a high-level receiver. He can run any route. He can catch any ball. Obviously, he’s young, he’s got to develop just like any receiver out of any offense, and it’s the New York Giants’ job to coach him to do that.”Alex Golesh on Jalin Hyatt via the Giants Huddle Podcast
Hyatt posted an incredible 1,267 receiving yards and 15 touchdowns in 2022. His efforts earned him the Fred Biletnikoff Award, given to the nation’s best wide receiver each season. Despite his elite production, there were questions regarding Hyatt’s ability to translate his game to the next level leading up to the 2023 NFL Draft.
Is Hyatt a scheme-dependent wide receiver?
Analysts debated whether or not Hyatt was just a product of the scheme in which he played at Tennessee.
“That was the sexy question leading up to draft,” Golesh said. “Is it the offense? Is it the product of the offense? Is it what you guys do and the tempo?”
Golesh listed these common questions that popped up around draft season, but he also gave some detailed answers:
“I’ve never seen a scheme get somebody open on a defensive back. The scheme maybe allows a formational matchup that you like, but the guy has still got to do the job of getting open. He’s as complete of a receiver as a three-year guy can be. It’s on that coaching staff, and offensively with the staff [the Giants] have, [they] do an incredible job of getting guys open in space and creating matchups. He’s going to do whatever that coaching staff asks him to do, and hopefully from a fan standpoint, getting vertical over top of people is one of those things.”Alex Golesh on Jalin Hyatt via the Giants Huddle Podcast
The Giants are getting a home-run hitter in Jalin Hyatt
Hyatt was a big-play machine in college. According to Giants.com, Of Hyatt’s 108 career catches, 52 went for 10+ yards, 30 for 20+ yards, 21 for 30+ yards, and 12 for 40+ yards. Hyatt’s elite speed contributes to his home-run hitting ability, and it also factored into the Giants’ decision to target him in the NFL Draft.
Hyatt’s signature performance came against Alabama in 2022. In that game, the record-breaking receiver posted 207 receiving yards and five touchdowns on only six receptions. Giants general manager was in attendance for that game and cited it as a big reason why New York targeted Hyatt in this year’s draft.
“You could really feel his speed,” Schoen said. “It’s legit 4.3.”
Former Tennessee offensive coordinator Alex Golesh praises Jalin Hyatt’s work ethic
Hyatt went into the Alabama game confident as ever. It was that confidence that Golesh says led the receiver to such immense success.
“It was the fact that he went into that game really confident,” Golesh said. “He earned the right to be confident because of how he worked. I think on a very national stage that night, he showed everybody in the country what he was capable of doing, hence helping us win, which I think probably made it even more magical in a lot of different ways.”
Hyatt’s work ethic propelled him to success in college and the Giants are hoping it will do the same for him at the next level. At the team’s mandatory minicamp in June, Hyatt was seen putting in extra work with QB Daniel Jones after practice. Hard work pays off and the Giants are hoping this extra work will lead to a big rookie season from their dynamic third-round draft pick.