Transfer WR Dylan Wright (TX A&M) Looks the Part of a Superstar Wide Receiver
The Minnesota Gopher football team has taken more transfers this offseason than PJ Fleck thought possible when he took this job a handful of years ago. But, he couldn’t have foreseen what has become the Wild West of collegiate transfer markets in 2021.
Most of his pickups have filled gaping holes on the defensive side of the ball. But there’s one transfer portal steal on the offensive side that’s flown under the radar. His name is Dylan Wright and he comes from Texas A&M, where he played only one season that didn’t count against his eligibility. Yes, he has four full years left if he wants to use them. He’ll wear #16 for the maroon and gold.
Dylan Wright is a dude.
But when you see this Dylan Wright in-person, you start to doubt that he’ll last four more years. Media was allowed into their first Minnesota Gopher football practice in 1.5 years on Saturday and I got to see the 6-3, 215 lb transfer with my own two eyes. Trust me, it didn’t take long to spot him. Dylan just looks… different, even among 100 division I football players.
After practice, I asked PJ Fleck what he’s seen from Wright this spring. After “discretely” making sure I pronounce [Day-Len]’s name properly next time, he said the same thing I was thinking. Dylan Wright LOOKS the part of a superstar wide receiver.
“When you look at him, he’s impressive. He’s long, he’s tall, he can run, he can catch. He’s got a physical presence about him. Coming in and learning our system as a wide receiver in two months is very difficult to do. But again, we’re challenging him every single day, getting better every single day.
And Matt Simon is doing a really good job of, not only getting to know the offense, but to be able to make plays within the offense. But, he’s gonna have a role and he knows that. We have to get him caught up to speed really quickly. But these reps that we’re getting him in spring practice right now are priceless.
He’s a wonderful kid who’s excited to be here and excited to grow.”PJ Fleck on Texas A&M Transfer Dylan Wright
Looking the part means nothing.
Of course, nothing is guaranteed and looking like a superstar receiver doesn’t make you a superstar wide receiver. Ask the Minnesota Vikings how picking receivers based on looks has worked for them during Rick Spielman’s tenure as GM. Laquan Treadwell and Cordarrelle Patterson still haunt his draft profile.
But from the very small samples we’ve seen of Wright so far, his physical dominance seems to have carried over into his play. I’ve seen him make just as many ridiculous one-handed catches this spring as I’ve seen normal two-handed grabs. Clearly, that’s a skill he likes to show off because PJ Fleck addressed the use of two-hands after Dylan made a one-hander look easy during a fade drill at practice on Saturday.
I caught the exchange on video. Scrub to the 00:28 mark for the throw + catch. Then listen at the 00:44 mark for PJ’s coaching moment over the loud speaker.
Just a couple of days later, the Gophers put out a spring practice highlight/hype clip. A profile of Dylan Wright starts the video and another incredible one-handed catch from #16 hits in slow motion at the 00:26 mark. He also has an impossible one-hander from a high school camp that went viral…
“He’s gonna have a role and he knows that” – PJ Fleck on Dylan Wright
Let’s remember that Dylan Wright was a 4-star .9678 rated prospect (247Sports) before landing at Texas A&M just one year ago. That rating slated him at #70 overall, got him into the 2019 ‘UnderArmor All-America’ game and brought offers from every blue blood school he could have wanted, including Alabama, Georgia, Florida, LSU, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oregon, Tennessee, etc, etc, etc.
Now, he comes into Minnesota’s most unproven position group of 2021 with a full year of growth both physically and mentally. Wright will get all of the opportunity he desires with PJ Fleck and Co. The Gophers could be a completely different team if Wright can get up to speed, spread his wings and show off his talent right away.
We’ve already seen what PJ Fleck’s offense can do with two uber-talented wide receivers. They already have one dude in Chris Autman-Bell but will be looking for a second after Rashod Bateman’s departure to the NFL. Here’s Wright’s high school huddle film.
Eric Strack | Minnesota Sports Fan