Laviska Shenault Jr. is a fresh face in the Jacksonville Jaguars' receiving corps. The young wideout will enter his second season in 2021 with a lot of hope on his shoulders. Big things are expected of Laviska Shenault Jr. Can he deliver the goods with a highly-rated number one overall pick at quarterback?
Many NFL experts have tipped the young wide receiver for big things, claiming he could be one of the players in line for a breakout season. Here's why this could be the case.
Why Laviska Shenault could take off in 2021
The second year in the NFL is seen as the best opportunity to gauge how good a player can be. Rookie years are usually rough, as the transition from college to the NFL can be jarring. Players need to get used to playing football full time, learning the playbook, establishing a new schedule, learning what works and what does not, and much more. This usually takes at least a full year.
However, by the start of any player's second season, the routine sets in. The players are much more comfortable in the league and acclimatized to the demands of the big leagues.
When the thinking stops, instinctual reactions take over. Laviska Shenault has spent his rookie season thinking and learning. Now, it's time for him to take over.
Marvin Jones' addition
The Jacksonville Jaguars signed Marvin Jones during the offseason, who's coming off his second-best season in the league. In 2020, he caught 76 passes for 978 yards and nine touchdowns. Jones will likely take over the top receiving spot and knock all of the other receivers down a peg.
When this happens, Shenault will face less-talented cornerbacks, which will allow him to be open more often, which will net him more receptions. More receptions will net more yardage and move him up the leaderboard. No way to go but up.
Trevor Lawrence is much more of a gunslinger than Gardner Minshew. In college, Lawrence averaged 9.4 yards per attempt in his final year at Clemson. Meanwhile, Minshew averaged 6.9 yards per attempt last season. With more passes downfield, Lawrence will give Laviska Shenault a lot more opportunities to excel.
The deeper the pass attempts, the more opportunities for highlights for Shenault. If he gets more highlights, there will be a stronger argument for him being one of the breakout players in 2021.