clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

2023 NFL Draft Profile: SMU wide receiver Rashee Rice

Rashee Rice is a talented receiving prospect with elite ball skills but is inconsistent at times

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 17 SMU at Tulane Photo by Matthew Visinsky/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

One prospect the Denver Broncos are showing interest in and could select on day two or three of the 2023 NFL Draft is SMU wide receiver Rashee Rice. He is a 6’1”, 204-pound receiving prospect who has recently met with the Broncos ahead of the draft. The Athletic’s lead draft analyst Dane Brugler has Rice ranked as his 11th-best receiver in the draft while ranking him as his 82nd overall prospect in the 2023 NFL Draft. Brugler currently has a late third-round grade on Rice and he is expected to go sometime on day two of the draft.

Rashee Rice played a total of four seasons at SMU and is coming off a breakout year for them. During his four-year career, he totaled 233 receptions for 3,111 yards, and 25 receiving touchdowns. This past year, he hauled in 96 receptions for 1,355 yards and 10 touchdowns. All of which were career highs for Rice and this earned him an invite to the Reese’s Senior Bowl.

Player Profile

Height: 6’1”

Weight: 204 pounds

40-time: 4.51 seconds

Arm Length: 32 3/4”

Hands: 9 12 inches

Vertical Jump: 41 inches

Broad Jump: 10’8”

Short Shuttle: 4.23 seconds

3-Cone Drill: 7.02 seconds

Film Room

Scouting Report


  • Good size and build
  • A physical receiver
  • Not a blazer, but good enough speed to separate from defenders
  • High points the ball with his leaping ability
  • Great body control and makes some impressive ‘wow’ catches
  • Frames out defenders from making a play on the ball
  • Tracks the ball well downfield
  • Can make defenders miss after the catch
  • Run-blocking skills stand out
  • Often broke off his route to find an opening when a QB was scrambling
  • Team Captain and a highly competitive player on the field
  • Broke Emmanuel Sanders receiving yards record at SMU


  • Lacks top end speed and twitch which could limit him at the next level, especially after the catch
  • Does not have an advanced route running tree and will need to develop that in the NFL
  • Concentration drops are an issue
  • Just an overall inconsistent player who will look amazing one snap and struggle on the next one

Rashee Rice RAS

What other analysts are saying about SMU wide receiver Rashee Rice

A three-year starter at SMU, Rice moved from the slot to the perimeter as a senior in head coach Rhett Lashlee’s power-spread offense. At a program that has produced a long list of quality receivers, he had the most prolific season school history in 2022, breaking Emmanuel Sanders’ receiving yards record and ranking No. 1 in the FBS with 112.9 receiving yards per game. With his ability to frame his catches, Rice times his leaps and wins jumps balls, leading the FBS with 18 catches of 20-plus air yards downfield in 2022. Though he makes tough catches look easy, he is also guilty of dropping some easy ones and will freelance at will. Overall, Rice must prove he has NFL-level consistency (in all areas) to compensate for his average speed, but he is a ball winner with natural instincts after the catch. He can be a quality contributor early in his NFL career. - The Athletic’s Dane Brugler

Talented but enigmatic receiver with game tape that shows a lack of consistency and impressive ball skills. Rice has enough top-end speed to attack vertically but has a tendency for nonchalant running on intermediate routes and zone-beaters underneath. In one game you might see terrific ball-tracking and jump-ball victories followed by frustrating drops and a lack of physicality in fighting back on contested catches. The route inefficiencies can be cleaned up, but Rice must play with better consistency and urgency to find long-term NFL reps. -’s Lance Zierlein

Final Thoughts

Rashee Rice is a polarizing receiver prospect because of his really high highs and his really low lows. He flashes immense potential at times and makes some big plays and catches and then will have an ugly drop and just general inconsistencies to his game. Also, while at SMU in their spread offense, he was not asked to run a very advanced route tree so he will enter the league needing to develop that. With all that said, I think you have to buy in on the potential and trust your coaching abilities and clean up the other areas of his game.

To me, he reminds me a bit of Courtland Sutton. A big receiver who lacks that top-end gear but will make some amazing wow catches. Now, Sutton was not as inconsistent coming up, but the upside is similar in my mind.

The Broncos recently brought him in for a top-30 visit and I can see why they are interested. He is a big receiver who can win those contested catches down the field while also bringing a run-blocking element to the field. He is a team captain who is highly competitive, so he likely checks the culture box for Sean Payton.

The Broncos have had their receivers in trade rumors over the past month and even though they have quieted down, they are continuing to look at receivers in the draft. If they do indeed decide to move one of them, I could see them considering Rice in the third round of the draft.