STRENGTHS - Harper is a big, physical receiver that excels at using his frame to shield the defender from the ball. He is physical against press coverage and is able to run through contact and stay on his line. When the ball is in the air, he shows the ability to consistently high point and adjust to the ball in the air, as well as secure catches while absorbing big hits. He displays outstanding hands, as he naturally and quietly plucks every ball without letting it get into his body. Harper is also an aggressive runner after the catch, showing better than expected straight-line speed and the ability to consistently break tackles in the open field with his power. He is a competitive blocker that does an excellent job of locking out and keeping his feet moving to sustain blocks in space.
WEAKNESSES - Harper does not have quick twitch explosiveness, and will struggle to create consistent separation at the next level. He tends to get into his break too upright, and because of his long legs he struggles to change directions fluidly or accelerate out of his cuts to create space against man coverage. While he has good long speed, he does not accelerate to top speed quickly and is not a threat to stretch the field vertically. After the catch he at times runs with the ball exposed, leaving him susceptible to strips.
SUMMARY - Chris Harper may not be as highly touted as several of the other receivers in this draft class and may not have comparable production numbers because of inconsistent QB play at Kansas State, but he clearly has the physical skill set to start at the next level. He consistently wins 50/50 balls because of his ability to get inside positioning and outplay defenders for the ball in the air, and he is able to create separation with physicality on his breaks and subtle push offs before the ball arrives. He has a outstanding hands and a huge catching radius, and is an extremely competitive runner once the ball is in his hands. The biggest question on Harper's game is whether or not he will be able to create consistent separation, as he tends to get a bit stiff when changing directions and lacks the ability to accelerate out of his breaks. While his lack of innate explosiveness will likely prevent him from ever becoming a true #1 receiver, but he should develop into a highly productive #2 receiver that stays on the field in all situations because of his blocking .