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NFL Draft Rumors: Laviska Shenault Jr. to Undergo Surgery for Core Muscle Injury

Blake SchusterCorrespondent IFebruary 29, 2020

Colorado wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr. speaks during a press conference at the NFL football scouting combine in Indianapolis, Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2020. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Michael Conroy/Associated Press

Wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr. did his best to impress scouts at the NFL combine. That may be the only time anyone gets to see him on the field from now until the draft. 

The Colorado product is expected to undergo surgery for a core muscle injury that will have him sidelined for four to six weeks, per ESPN's Adam Schefter:

Adam Schefter @AdamSchefter

Colorado WR Laviska Shenault, who has been dealing with core muscle injury and inflammation of the pubic bone, will have surgery that is expected to sideline him 4-6 weeks, per league source. Despite the injury, Shenault ran a 4.55 at the combine. But with no improvement, surgery

Shenault has been dealing with muscle inflammation of the pubic bone, but that didn't stop him from participating at the combine. The wideout ran a 4.58 in the 40-yard dash despite the injury. 

Bleacher Report's Matt Miller has Shenault listed as the No. 6 receiver on his latest big board, pegging him as a fringe first-rounder that he projected to go No. 28th overall. 

Of course, that was before it became known the CU alum would need surgery. Now his draft stock is surely to take a hit.

The 6'1", 227-pound native of Texas was wildly productive as a sophomore in 2018. He topped 1,011 receiving yards on a 86 receptions with six touchdowns in nine games. Shenault followed that up in 2019 with 764 yards and four scores on 56 catches. Even with an injured core muscle, Shenault still managed 17 reps on the bench press at the combine in Indianapolis. 

NFL.com analyst Lance Zierlein compared Shenault to Sammy Watkins and Greg Little for their ability to play in any WR slot:

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He offers explosive playmaking potential with strength/wiggle to house a short catch-and-run throw or race and leap to pull in a bomb downfield. Shenault shines as a phone-booth bully who's able to body up and create late windows while securing throws with vice-grip hands. Evaluators get excited by his talent as a direct-snap runner, but sometimes he's too physical for his own good, which could bring his history of durability into play. Despite his traits and talent, there is work to be done as route-runner and coordinators need to determine how best to use him. He's a high-end talent, but not a sure thing. An exciting ceiling but a lower floor.

With the current timeline for recovery, Shenault should be healthy enough to participate in minicamp and offseason activities with whichever club drafts him. 

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