The LSU Tigers learned the final fate of several potential NFL draft prospects Monday evening—and there was little good news in Baton Rouge.
Confirming that both Jarvis Landry and Odell Beckham Jr. have filed paperwork and will enter 2014 NFL Draft. @LSUfball— Michael Bonnette (@LSUBonnette) January 13, 2014
It seemed like a foregone conclusion that the two star receivers would move on after enormous junior campaigns.
Beckham led the SEC in all-purpose yardage, tallying 178.1 yards per game. He totaled 1,152 receiving yards and more than 1,000 combined return yards, giving him 2,315 all-purpose yards for the season.
Jarvis Landry said: It's been best 3 yrs of my life being part of Tiger Nation. I've grown to become a man of respect, loyalty, integrity...— Michael Bonnette (@LSUBonnette) January 13, 2014
However, Beckham wasn't LSU's leading receiver. Landry bested him with 77 receptions for 1,193 yards and 10 touchdowns—all team highs.
The Tigers are now left with a massive void at receiver.
No other receiver broke 200 yards on the season. Hill was their No. 3 receiver with 181 yards. Their No. 5 receiver, senior Kadron Boone, will also be departing. Travin Dural will bring back more than any LSU receiver after totaling seven receptions for 145 yards and two touchdowns in 2013.
|Odell Beckham Jr.||59||1,152||8|
|TOP 3 TOTALS||154||2,526||18|
With its depth crushed, LSU could turn to junior college transfer Quantavius Leslie to fill the void. Leslie was a West Virginia commit coming out of high school, but he ended up at Hinds Community College. He then committed to the Tigers as a 4-star and the No. 5 JUCO receiver according to 247 Sports. He caught just one pass for 11 yards last season.
If Leslie and Dural aren't the answers, the Tigers could rely on a pair of highly touted newcomers.
Who will be LSU's leading receiver in 2014?
Nearly the entire offense will be overhauled, as quarterback Zach Mettenberger will be gone as well. LSU already appears to have his replacement: Anthony Jennings. The freshman led an impressive game-winning touchdown drive against Arkansas late in the season after Mettenberger's injury. If he doesn't pan out, the Tigers also have former Penn State quarterback Rob Bolden.
Even with the heavy losses, talent won't be a major issue for LSU.
The Tigers recruit as well as any program in the nation, so it might be a matter of how quickly the newbies adapt to their roles in the offense.
LSU will start its 2014 season with a stiff test against Wisconsin in Houston.