Laviska Shenault Jr.

Jaguars Sign Laviska Shenault

The Jaguars have agreed to terms with second-round wide receiver Laviska Shenault, according to Field Yates of ESPN.com (Twitter link).

Shenault’s explosive abilities were often on display during his three seasons at Colorado, and Joe Marino of The Draft Network points to Shenault’s run-after-the-catch talent as his most promising trait. Sub-par quarterback play at Colorado meant that Shenault didn’t always post eye-catching numbers, but he did top the 1,000-yard mark in 2018 (before falling back to just 764 yards a season ago).

In Jacksonville, D.J. Chark and Dede Westbrook are virtually assured of commanding two of the Jaguars’ starting receiver roles in three-wide sets. Shenault, then, will likely compete with the likes of Chris Conley and Keelan Cole to become Jacksonville’s third pass-catcher.

As the 42nd overall pick, Shenault’s four-year contract will be worth something in the neighborhood of $7.696MM, according to Over the Cap. He should receive a signing bonus of $3.157MM and have a 2020 cap charge of $1.399MM.

Jacksonville now has five members of its 12-man draft class under contract. Here’s the full list:

1-9: C.J. Henderson, CB (Florida)
1-20: K’Lavon Chaisson, DE (LSU)
2-42: Laviska Shenault, WR (Colorado): Signed
3-73: Davon Hamilton, DT (Ohio State): Signed
4-116: Ben Bartch, OT (St. John’s (MN))
4-137: Josiah Scott, CB (Michigan State)
4-140: Shaquille Quarterman, ILB (Miami): Signed
5-157: Daniel Thomas, S (Auburn)
5-165: Collin Johnson, WR (Texas): Signed
6-189: Jake Luton, QB (Oregon State)
6-206: Tyler Davis, TE (Georgia Tech): Signed
7-223: Chris Claybrooks, CB (Memphis)

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Jaguars Take WR Laviska Shenault At No. 42

A pre-draft injury helped Laviska Shenault tumble out of the first round, but he did not fall too far. The Jaguars used their No. 42 overall pick on the Colorado wideout.

The third wide receiver taken in Friday’s second round, Shenault was long expected to be a first-round talent. But as the Combine revealed a deep wideout class, Shenault’s core muscle injury resulted in a drop into Round 2.

Shenault will join a Jaguars team that houses 2018 second-rounder D.J. Chark as its top wide receiver. At Colorado, Shenault totaled 1,011 yards in just nine games as a sophomore in 2018. The 227-pound talent will be expected to play a key role in helping the Jags determine if Gardner Minshew is a long-term answer at quarterback.

At first, Shenault’s groin issue was not believed to require surgery. However, a slower-than-expected 40-yard dash time preceded the talented prospect undergoing a procedure.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Draft Notes: Shenault, Wirfs, Simmons

After undergoing core muscle surgery earlier this year, Colorado wideout Laviska Shenault Jr. is almost fully recovered. In a letter sent to all 32 NFL teams, Dr. William Meyers stated that the receiver will be back to 100% by next week.

“I watched Laviska go through regular football drills yesterday at 5 1/2 weeks postop and he looked terrific,” the doctor stated (via NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport on Twitter). “I believe by April 25, 2020, he will be at 100% for full football activities.”

The receiver decided to undergo surgery following an underwhelming 40-yard dash time. Shenault went under the knife in early March, and recovery was expected to take at least one month.

The 6-foot-1, 227-pound wideout has been on the draft radar for a while, beginning with a 1,011-yard, nine-touchdown 2018 sophomore season. His stats dropped a bit in 2019, but the receiver could still be taken towards the end of the first round.

Let’s check out some more draft notes…

  • The Giants are among the teams in the top-10 that have done extensive research on Iowa offensive tackle Tristan Wirfs, reports ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler (via Twitter). Wirfs seems like a logical target for New York if they end up trading back, but Fowler hints that the Giants could also simply take the lineman with the fourth-overall pick. We previously heard that Dave Gettleman “loves” the 6-5, 322-pound lineman. Our own Zach Links profiled Wirfs earlier this week.
  • Isaiah Simmons made his name as a linebacker at Clemson, but many teams have told Ian Rapoport of NFL.com (Twitter link) that they see his future at the safety position. Simmons certainly has the versatility, as he played both positions (along with defensive end and cornerback) during his time in college. Simmons finished last season with 67 tackles, seven sacks, and three interceptions, and there’s a good chance he’ll be a top-10 pick in next week’s draft.
  • The Colts may target a signal caller in the draft, but GM Chris Ballard says he won’t “force the quarterback position,” (Twitter link Joel A. Erickson of the Indianapolis Star). “It’s got to be the right guy, the right fit,” Ballard continued. “I don’t know when that’s going to happen. Maybe this year, maybe next year, maybe two years from now.” The Colts inked veteran Philip Rivers to a one-year contract this past offseason, and they’re still rostering Jacoby Brissett.

NFL Draft Rumors: Reagor, WRs, Dantzler

Despite his lack of size, Jalen Reagor is making a name for himself in this year’s uncommonly deep crop of wide receivers. And, at his recent workout, Reagor boosted his stock even further. The TCU standout ran the 40-yard-dash in 4.28 and 4.22 seconds, according to the stopwatches of two observers, Aaron Wilson of the Houston Chronicle writes. The hand-timed accuracy may be called into question, but no one is questioning Reagor’s speed as the draft draws near.

The 5-foot-11, 195-pound receiver turned in a 1,000-yard campaign in 2018, then dipped to a 43/611/5 line in 2019. Still, he stands as one of the more intriguing WRs up for grabs.

Here’s more on the NFL Draft, including this year’s WR market:

  • The RaidersTitansVikingsColts, Packers, 49ers, Jets, Eagles, and Broncos are all in the hunt for wide receivers in the first three rounds, Adam Caplan of NFL.com tweets. Even after the likes of Jerry Jeudy, CeeDee Lamb, Henry Ruggs III, and Tee Higgins are off the board, there will be plenty of high-caliber talents available for them.
  • The top four receivers figure to go inside of the Top 20 this year, but several receivers are in play for the back-end of the first round, Tom Pelissero of NFL.com (on Twitter) hears. Pelissero lists Reagor, Arizona State’s Brandon Aiyuk, Baylor’s Denzel Mims, and Colorado’s Laviska Shenault Jr. as players who could make the first round cut.
  • After a disappointing 4.6-second 40-yard-dash at the combine, Mississippi corner Cameron Dantzler ran a 4.38-second 40-yard-dash this past week and backed it up with video proof (Twitter link via ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter). Meanwhile, Dantzler’s agent tells Calvin Watkins of the Dallas News (on Twitter) that his combine time was slowed by an injured hamstring. Most projections have Dantzler going somewhere in the first two rounds.

Draft Notes: Shenault, Wills, Moss, Niang

One of the many high-end wide receiver prospects in this draft, Colorado product Laviska Shenault will need surgery. Shenault will undergo a procedure that will sideline him for more than a month, Adam Schefter of ESPN.com tweets. The surgery is scheduled for next week, per Troy Renck of Denver7 (on Twitter). Shenault did not run well in this week’s 40-yard dash, clocking 4.58 seconds, and this injury helps explain that. The early-entry wideout is dealing with a core muscle injury and pubic bone inflammation, per Schefter. Shenault did not run a second 40. This could impact Shenault’s draft stock, but even given his injury history and the abundance of wide receivers in this class, it is unlikely he will fall out of the second round. The 6-foot-1, 227-pound wideout has been on the draft radar for a while, beginning with a 1,011-yard, nine-touchdown 2018 sophomore season.

Here is the latest from the draft world:

  • One prospect who might’ve seen his draft stock dip this week was Alabama offensive lineman Jedrick Wills. Wills seemed to be a lock to be a first-round pick as an offensive tackle, but it looks like a position change could be in his future. Some teams have taken him off their tackle boards all together and are projecting him as a guard at the next level, per Tony Pauline of ProFootballNetwork.com, who writes that this is causing his stock to slip and that teams are “concerned about his ability to mentally process a complex blocking scheme.”
  • LSU tight end Thaddeus Moss, the son of the legendary Randy Moss, got some tough injury news at the combine. His physical revealed a Jones fracture in his foot and he will undergo surgery, according to Tom Pelissero of NFL Network (Twitter link). While Pelissero notes that he’ll be ready well in advance of the regular season, this will unfortunately cause him to miss a good chunk of his first offseason program. Moss bursted onto the scene out of nowhere this past season, and had been regarded as a late riser and potential Day 2 pick. It’s unclear but this could hurt his stock a bit.
  • There was also some good medical news, as TCU offensive tackle Lucas Niang got a positive report following his November hip surgery, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network tweets. Rapoport writes that Niang is now considered one of the top offensive tackles in the draft. Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller had him going 77th overall in a recent mock draft, although he could go higher with this fresh clean bill of health.

 

No Surgery For Laviska Shenault

Good news for one of the most talented wide receivers in this year’s draft. Colorado’s Laviska Shenault was informed that he’ll only need rest, and not surgery, to address his nagging groin injury, sources tell ESPN.com’s Adam Schefter.

[RELATED: Latest On Alabama’s Tua Tagovailoa]

Shenault’s pain has been traced to osteitis pubis, which translates to inflammation of the pubic bone. Despite the aches, Shenault hopes to participate in the combine later this month as well as his pro day on March 11.

Before his latest doctor’s visit, teams were concerned that Shenault had aggravated a core injury, which kept him out of two games in 2019. Fortunately, that’s not the case, and the Colorado star should still be on track as a first-round pick.

This year’s crop of available receivers is uncommonly deep. Jerry Jeudy (Alabama), CeeDee Lamb (Oklahoma), Henry Ruggs III (Alabama, again), Tee Higgins (Clemson), and Justin Jefferson (LSU) headline the group along with Shenault. All of those players offer serious upside, but not all of them possess Shenault’s versatility. At Colorado, the man they call “2 Live” lined up at all three WR spots.

Shenault broke out in 2018 as he posted more than 1,000 yards and six touchdowns through the air, plus five more TDs on the ground for good measure. In eleven games last year, he finished with 764 yards but upped his per-catch average to 13.6 yards.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Draft Notes: Tua, Okwuegbunam, Reagor

As Tua Tagovailoa continues to rehab from a hip injury, the quarterback is uncertain whether he’ll enter the NFL Draft or stay at Alabama for another season. In a conversation with Cecil Hurt of TideSports.com (and passed along by Ian Rapoport of NFL.com on Twitter), Tagovailoa said he’ll continue to discuss his future with his parents in anticipation of the January 20th deadline to declare for the draft.

“There is a risk and a reward if I stay and a risk and a reward if I go,” Tagovailoa said. “The risk if I stay is obviously ‘Do I get hurt again?’ The reward is that I could come back and have another good year like my sophomore year and elevate myself back to the very top of the (NFL) draft.

“If I leave, I think the risk is a little higher. That risk would be how far do I drop in the draft. To me, it’s 50-50 between going in the first round and possibly going in the second round. If I go somewhere from first (overall) to around 24th, the money will be set. But let’s say — and I am just picking a number — that I go to the 31st pick. That would be about 9 million dollars. That’s a lot of money, an amount of money I’ve never had before, but it’s not high first-round money and you can never make that money up. They say you can (make it up) on your next contract but money lost is money lost to me.

“Those are the deciding factors. If my parents tell me that they think I should leave, that is obviously going to be a factor. But so far, they’ve told me that it’s my decision.”

The quarterback doesn’t have a timetable for his return from injury. Even with the ailment, we recently heard that Tagovailoa would still be a first-round pick in the 2020 draft.

Let’s check out some more draft notes:

  • TCU wideout Jalen Reagor announced on Twitter that he’s entering the 2020 draft. Following a 1,000-yard campaign in 2018, Reagor finished 2019 with 43 catches for 611 yards and five touchdowns. The 5-foot-11, 195-pound receiver is listed as the sixth-best player at his position by CBS Sports.
  • Maryland RB Anthony McFarland Jr. has declared for the 2020 draft. The former redshirt sophomore still had two years of eligibility. McFarland finished his season having compiled 614 rushing yards and eight scores on 114 carries. He added another 17 catches for 126 yards and a touchdown.
  • Missouri will be losing a trio of contributors, as defensive tackle Jordan Elliott, tight end Albert Okwuegbunam, and offensive lineman Trystan Colon-Castillo all declared for the 2020 draft. Okwuegbunam is easily Missouri’s top-rated prospect, with the tight end ranking third at his position, per CBS Sports.
  • Oregon State receiver Isaiah Hodgins will enter the NFL Draft, the player announced on social media (via Charean Williams of ProFootballTalk.com). The son of former NFL player James Hodgins, the Beavers wideout finished this past season with 86 receptions for 1,171 yards and 13 touchdowns. Considering the receiver depth in the upcoming draft, Hodgins will be hard pressed to be an early-round pick.
  • Colorado wideout Laviska Shenault Jr. is entering the draft, the team announced on Twitter. “Laviska Shenault represented our relentless culture and was one of the most dynamic, dominant and versatile players that I have ever coached,” said head coach Mel Tucker. Shenault had 1,775 yards and 10 touchdowns between the 2018 and 2019 seasons.