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Notre Dame Football Recruiting

Film Don't Lie | Elijah Burress

February 10, 2024
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With 14 commitments, Notre Dame has most likely landed over half of their 2025 recruiting class. None of those commitments have come from anyone projected to play receiver, though.

That makes Elijah Burress‍ the first to jump on board.

The son of former Michigan State and Pittsburgh Steelers star Plaxico Burress, Elijah’s mother was also a track star at Penn State. He has the athletic pedigree and his father has clearly had an influence on his understanding of playing the position.

Despite his genetics, Burress has flown a bit under the radar as a prospect. I’m a fan of his game and really like this pick up for the Irish.

Height: 6’1”

Weight: 170

Projected Position: Wide receiver

ISD Grade: 90 (4-star)

National Average Grade: 87.8 (3-star)

What he does best:

Burress is an advanced route runner for his age. He has a great understanding of leverage and knows how to manipulate defensive backs with his movement in order to gain separation.

via GIPHY

He also has elite short area quickness and change of direction too. One year ago he ran 6.99 3-cone at a camp, which is an elite time. It would have been the third best time for a receiver at the 2022 NFL Combine and top-10 at the position in just about every year.

He has very good ball skills and also tracks the deep ball well.

via GIPHY

A slippery player after the catch, he can make defenders miss and shows great competitive speed to run away from the defenders on this long touchdown.

via GIPHY

What he needs to improve:

He needs to get a lot stronger. It’s evident after the catch when he struggles to break tackles. In every area it’s going to help his game from winning contested catches to fighting through press coverage.

He can do a better job of working back to the football when the timing is off with the quarterback. The ball isn’t always out when it should be with his quarterback and he will have won with his initial route, but needs to continue to adjust when things aren’t perfect.

What’s his ceiling?

I know Burress doesn’t have a big time offer list at the moment, but the reason why I like him as a prospect is that he has elite traits that can help him win in man coverage. Much like his head coach told ISD’s Christian McCollum, I also believe he is only scratching the surface with his ability because I think he’s going to get faster and stronger.

He’s a much different player than his father was, but he clearly has a good understanding of the position. Burress’ game projects a lot closer to former Notre Dame receiver TJ Jones as someone with make-you-miss ability after the catch who can play outside or in the slot in college.

Who he could be:

Former Notre Dame receiver TJ Jones

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