Doesn't explode out in the first few steps but has a second gear that most people can't match when he gets his momentum going. He'll win almost every foot race when he hits his stride. I expect him to be in the 4.5 range in the 40.
Strong, reliable hands. High points jump balls, lays out and makes diving catches, and doesn't have many drops. Very good hands whether he's running free, catching a screen, or if he's contested downfield.
Doesn't run a full route tree. Has a good jab step at the top of his route going into his break but doesn't explode out of it to gain separation. Runs great vertical routes that put him in position to make catches. Needs to learn how to set defenders up better. Not a lot of route running film.
He is used as an H-back which is usually a tight end or fullback so he's definitely strong. Bench presses DBs when blocking downfield. Strong legs to run through arm tackles and drive through contact for extra yards. One scout said "He will be the strongest receiver in the league the day he gets drafted". Squats 500 lbs.
High points the ball well, his vertical is huge and he is a legit 6'2. Jump ball weapon. Can go and get balls that are overthrown. Well timed jumps.
Run after Catch
Turns into a running back after the catch. Has the ability to make people miss and fights through contact. Has a different gear in the open field that nobody is going to catch up to. Hard to tackle because he's strong and runs through arm tackles. Does need to recognize when to just get upfield rather than try to juke. Needs space to
Catching in Traffic
Strong hands, concentration and body control allow him to come down with contested catches
Big Play Ability
All six games he was healthy he had a TD of over 25 yards. Makes explosive plays in every game he's healthy. Will be a big play threat at the NFL level as well but it will be harder when people are in the same ballpark of athleticism.
Suffered a toe injury that he missed 3 games with and then a torn labrum at the end of the season. He did play the last game with both injuries. Missed all of spring practice. Claims this was the first time he's been injured.
Not afraid of contact and often chooses to run through or over people. Used as a blocker because of his willingness to throw his body around. Played through significant injuries at the end of 2018. Fearless.
Extremely productive in 9 games last year he had 86 catches for 1,011 yards and 6 TDs. Also had 5 rushing TDs and 115 yards. Only one year of production.
Character was praised by high school and college coaches.
He does most of his damage downfield. He gets a lot of touches that don't go for many yards but he supplements them with huge chunk plays. He has good speed and concentration to track the ball and finish the catch. Had catches of 25 yards or more in each of the first six games when he was healthy. Understands how to beat defenses' leverage to get behind coverage.
Over the Middle
Doesn't generally run across the middle. Struggles to get separation before the QB has to make a decision. Good at making the contested catches and handling the contact but has to do a better job of getting open over the middle.
Fearless, tough, versatile. Plays like he has a chip on his shoulder. Football IQ is just normal.
Was consistently outstanding until injury in 2018. Didn't play much as a true freshman. Hands are consistent. Doesn't have the same speed and tenacity when he's not getting the ball.
Extremely gifted athlete at 6'2, 220 he can out jump and out run almost anyone he lines up against. His versatility and outstanding strength allowed CU to line him up as a slot, outside receiver, H-back, wildcat QB, and running back. Has a different gear when he gets to run downfield routes. Big time playmaker, is a threat whenever he touches the ball. Sure handed and wins contested catches and jump balls regularly. Plays fearless and is willing to sacrifice his body. Will be a deep threat and contested catch maker at the next level. Weight room freak. Turns into a RB after the catch, can make people miss or run through contact. Good agility for a guy his size. Builds up speed quickly after his first 2 steps.
Is a bad run blocker but he has the tools to be good. Not initially explosive out of his stance. Doesn't play with the same speed and toughness when he knows he's not getting the ball. Needs to learn how to find space when he doesn't get the ball out of his break and in scramble situations. Doesn't run a full route tree. Tightness in his hips. Has to learn how to find soft spots in the zone, doesn't find space well in scramble situations. Just a basic football IQ. CU manufactured a lot of touches for him so he wasn't actually beating coverage for all of his touches.
Laviska Shenault Jr. is one of the most freakish athletes in college football right now. His combination of strength, size, and speed is so rare, I struggled to find a really good comparison for him. As with most gifted athletes, he is a better athlete than football player right now as he is still learning the more advanced aspects of the game. The fact that he is still learning makes his gaudy numbers even more impressive because he was a legit Heisman candidate through the first 6 weeks of the season. He ended the year with 103 total touches for 1,126 yards and 11 TDs in 9 total games, the last 3 playing through significant injuries. He showed how tough he was by playing through those injuries and also by running over people frequently. It will be interesting to see his stats this year with a new coach and new offensive system that is more pro style. I've seen draft projections that have him as high as #6 overall. In my opinion he's a first round athlete but the 2020 class of WRs is so good that it is hard to project who teams have at the top of the board. If he stays healthy and adapts well to the new system I think he ends up a top 15 draft pick that needs some time to develop but could be deployed many different ways to get the ball in his hands.
I saw "stronger Sammy Watkins" a lot. Flip side is faster N'Keal Harry.