NFL Draft Debate: Julio Jones vs AJ Green

Julio Jones at the NFL Combine

Isn’t it crazy how 40 yards can hypothetically make you millions of dollars? Well, that’s exactly what happened to Julio Jones this past weekend at the NFL combine. Jones dominated his combine, stole the show and easily pushed his way into the top 10. Question is – will the longtime favorite AJ Green still be picked in front of Julio Jones?

Green and Jones were no doubt two of the best receivers in the country this past season, let alone the conference. What each does well, the other does better. Green probably has the better hands of the two, but Jones is now “faster” than Green and is more physical. So, it definitely begs the question of which one will be chosen first.

AJ Green did miss his first four games this past season due to an NCAA violation for selling his bowl game jersey. No one cares about that anymore, and the only thing teams care about is what happens on the field from here on out – except if you’re Ryan Mallett. Sure, they don’t want another Ben Roethlisberger on their team reeking havoc every weekend, but you are not getting that with AJ Green or Julio Jones.

Anyhow, the Jones vs Green debate will go on well past NFL Draft day.

AJ Green is 6-3, 211lbs, and he catches everything thrown his way – and even some that aren’t (see Colorado). Green is your prototypical receiver. He’s tall, lanky and has great hands. He is a great route runner and creates separation because, while he is slim, he is very physical getting off the line of scrimmage. Green did run a 4.48 40 over the weekend, which is not too shabby to say the least.

On the other hand, Julio Jones is 6-2, 220lbs and is a physical specimen. Jones blew everyone away when he ran a 4.39 in the 40 over the weekend. When you’re talking about sub 4.4 numbers, you are talking about a freak. Let’s not forget – Jones is 220lbs with the body of a linebacker running a sub-4.4 40. That is stupid sick. Jones does have good hands, but he is very physical after he catches the football. He has the ability to break tackles and the ability to create separation from a smaller defensive back.

Updated: Now, it is coming out that Julio Jones dominated the combine with a broken foot. Incredible! Hope he gets well soon.

My Decision

When I look at both of these receivers, I see talent and the ability to make plays. However, I still take AJ Green all day. Green may not be as fast or as physical as Julio, but the ability he has shown over the years to go get the football in the air makes him stand out from the rest. Green has proven he can stay healthy over the last three years as well, and he has taken some shots.

Whichever of the two you pick, I’m sure you can’t go wrong. Even though they are very different, each of them brings their own flavor to the gridiron.

I’m sure they both will still be playing many Sundays from now, and we’ll settle this argument in about 10 years.

Which one would you take, and why?

AJ Green at the NFL Combine