Kirk Herbstreit makes his pick for 2024 NFL Draft's Puka Nacua

For those who love themselves some Puka Nacua, may I interest you in some Ladd McConkey?

Ladd McConkey, Georgia Bulldogs
Ladd McConkey, Georgia Bulldogs / Brandon Sloter/GettyImages

It is going to break so many people's hearts when Ladd McConkey ends up being a first-round pick. The former Georgia star wide receiver had a fantastic combine. Injuries may have slowed him down during his final year at UGA, but his NFL readiness could not have possibly been more on display than this past weekend in Indianapolis. McConkey was a day-two lock, now pushing to be a top-32 pick.

He may not have had many offers coming out of high school. Although he may look unassuming with his pads off, McConkey has the perfect combination of speed, competitiveness and physicality to make himself one of the best possession receivers in the league right away. He is every bit the plug-and-play type of pass-catcher. So much so that he has Kirk Herbstreit heaping a ton of praise his way.

ESPN's lead college football analyst and Amazon's lead color commentator for Thursday Night Football likens McConkey to Los Angeles Rams sensation Puka Nacua. He may not have been a first-round pick last season, but Nacua certainly turned heads during his rookie season out of BYU. Herbstreit expects that McConkey could do the same during his rookie year out of Georgia. I agree!

This is such lofty praise for a former three-star coming out of high school, but we know what we saw.

McConkey is much more than just a Hunter Renfrow out there; he could be the next Garrett Wilson.

Kirk Herbstreit views UGA WR Ladd McConkey as the next Puka Nacua

Barring injuries, I have always thought that McConkey's game would translate very well to the next level. Some may argue that he is a product of the Georgia passing game system, but it hasn't honestly been one that has given us many first-round talents outside the numbers. Yes, his teammate Brock Bowers will be a first-round pick, but you have to remember that he is a generational tight end as well.

To me, McConkey is the type of prospect that can succeed in most NFL offenses. He may not be a No. 1 speed wide receiver outside the numbers, but he is the type of guy that can get an offense going. Look for him to be a more polished version of former Georgia star wide receiver George Pickens. Right now, McConkey is a top-45 lock, possibly going as high as somewhere in the 30s.

Ultimately, putting this kind of praise on someone is never a good idea for any particular prospect. However, McConkey is in a rare position where this shouldn't matter. He put in all the hard work to be ultra-successful at Georgia. He went from a nobody coming out of high school, to being one of the most important pass-catchers we have ever seen tee it up Between the Hedgers in Athens, alright.

Whoever ends up drafting McConkey will have improved their wide receiver room exponentially.

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