Laviska Shenault 2020 NFL Draft Profile
2020 NFL Draft
Laviska Shenault is projected to be one of the higher upside receiving prospects in what’s been touted as arguably one of the best receiver draft classes of all-time, coming out of Colorado, it will be interesting to see what teams take a shot on Shenault despite an up and down tenure as a member of the Buffaloes’ receiving corps.
College Career: Shenault got out to a slow start in his freshman year, catching just 7 passes for 168 yards before breaking out in 2018 with 86 receptions for 1,011 yards and 6 TDs. Shenault took a step back this past year, finishing with team-highs of 56 catches for 764 yards and 4 scores while adding another dimension to his repertoire, carrying the ball 23 times for 161 yards and a pair of TDs out of the Wildcat formation.
Strengths: Shenault has been viewed by many to have the perfect balance of strength, speed, toughness and discipline, as a lot of receivers with that level of strength have a tendency to use contact a bit too much and get caught, drawing unnecessary penalties. Shenault has the speed and acceleration to get open, get the ball in his hands and has the moves to get around defenders and break through any arm tackles that come his way. Shenault’s ability to pick up gains from wherever he catches the rock makes him a dangerous option on screen passes and short pass routes like slant routes.
Weaknesses: The lone knock on Shenault is that he has had durability issues in his time at Colorado as he missed three games with a toe injury in the 2018 season that needed surgery while also playing with a torn labrum at the end of that same season. Most recently, Shenault had been dealing with groin pain and was diagnosed with an overuse injury, but thankfully it was just a matter of his pain threshold as the injury wouldn’t require surgery.
Outlook/Possible Fit: Shenault doesn’t have the name brand of receivers ranked ahead of him, but there’s no denying that Shenault is one receiver that has the “total package” of size, speed and ability when it comes to route running and skills once the ball is in his hands. If Shenault can stay healthy and avoid the injury bug, there’s a good chance that we could see him as a team’s #1 receiver within the next couple of years. As far as a team fit goes, I could see Shenault ending up with the Minnesota Vikings. The Vikes lost out in the Stefon Diggs deal, and Adam Thielen can’t handle an entire offense on his own despite being a high-volume pass catcher for Minnesota. Shenault can take some of the load off of Thielen and allow Thielen to thrive in a more slot receiver kind of role and let Shenault be the power receiving threat on the outside to help Minnesota rebuild into a contender going forward.