Name: Aidan Howard
High School: Gateway (Monroeville PA)
Height/Weight: 6-5, 195 pounds
Ranking: Rivals 3*, 247 3*, ESPN 3*
Additional Offers: UMass
One of the more versatile playmakers in the class of 2016, Aidan Howard will bring great size to the wide receiver position in Charlottesville. After playing wideout, free safety, cornerback, and even some outside linebacker in high school, Howard will make the full-time transition to offense at the next level.
With Virginia trotting out multiple four-recevier sets in the new offense, Howard is an ideal candidate to lineup on the inside. Offensive coordinator Robert Anae prefers to have bigger targets in inside, and Howard is that type of possession-recevier to perform the duties needed in the slot. Those duties will include providing extra blocking to the outside and getting open on 3rd down and short situations.
As seen on the film above, Howard displays acceleration at both corner and at wide receiver. Howard has excellent hands and can reach both high and low to come away with catches. Downfield blocking was a huge part of his high school team's game plan, and Howard shows tremendous effort coming from the slot to make blocks on the outside.
As far as playing time as a rookie it is pretty much the same situation as Dubois. Yes, he is only a freshman, but outside of Keeon Johnson, no other true wide receiver on Virginia's returning roster has really proven anything. With Virginia going four-wide often in the new scheme, Anae will likely put a lot of different bodies on the field. Howard will certainly get a chance to prove himself during summer training camp.