With the 82nd pick in the 2021 NFL Draft, the Washington Football Team strengthened its wide receiver corps by taking North Carolina wide receiver Dyami Brown.
Brown (6-foot-1, 189 pounds) has been an impact playmaker for the Tar Heels since appearing in 10 games as a true freshman in 2018. After grabbing 17 receptions for 173 yards and a touchdown that season, his production took a massive jump during his sophomore season with 51 catches for 1,034 yards and 12 touchdowns, which tied a school record. He also set a single-season school record by scoring at least one touchdown in 10 games.
Brown quickly made it clear that he could be a deep threat that can gash defenses. Nine of his 12 touchdowns that season were at least 20 yards, which was ranked second nationally by Pro Football Focus. He also led the ACC with 20.3 yards per catch, which ranked third in UNC history.
"Brown is a little thin," NFL.com's Lance Zierlein said in his draft evaluation, "but has good length and excellent ball-tracking talent with the ability to follow the flight over his shoulder and bring it in for the score."
Brown continued to improve during his junior season. In addition to becoming the first player in program history with two 1,000-yard seasons as a receiver, he earned first-team All-ACC honors and was named a Biletnikoff Award semifinalist. During his final game with North Carolina, which was against No. 10 Miami, Brown hauled in four receptions for 167 yards in a 62-26 win. That was not even his best performance, though; against Virginia, he had 11 receptions for 240 receiving yards and three touchdowns. The Tar Heels needed every bit of his production, too, as they escaped with a 44-41 victory.
If North Carolina needed a chunk play, it could count on Brown to deliver. Since 2019, he was either been first or tied for first in receptions (15), yards (606) and touchdowns (eight) on "go routes," according to PFF. And adding to that reliability, Brown has never dropped a contested target in his college career, one of the most impressive being a juggling one-handed snag against South Carolina.
The move has been praised by analysts like PFF's Mike Renner as "the steal of the 2021 Draft." Now, Brown will be paired with talented receivers like Terry McLaurin, Curtis Samuel and Adam Humphries. All three have their strengths; McLaurin is a crisp route runner, Samuel has versatility and Humphries knows how to get open and keep the chains moving. All of those players will serve as valuable teachers to Brown in his rookie year.
"To me, what he can do after the catch, what he can do getting off the line of scrimmage, that's why we're so high on him," Renner said. "You got a bunch of receivers...that can win at any level of the football field."