2020 NFL Draft prospects to watch when LSU travels to Texas


With only one ranked matchup in Week 1 – No. 11 Oregon versus No. 16 Auburn – Week 2 showcases a pair of them with No. 6 LSU and No. 9 Texas taking the cake as the marquee game.

Both teams played host to middle of the road Group of Five teams and easily took care of business. Texas proved its worth on the offensive front and LSU accentuated its always high-flying defense. Quarterbacks Joe Burrow of LSU and Sam Ehlinger of Texas showed vast improvements but the verdict is still out till after the clock hits 00:00 on Saturday night.

LSU travels to Austin to take on the Longhorns at 7:30 p.m. ET on ABC with plenty of next-level prospects to focus on.


No. 6 LSU

#9 Joe Burrow – QB (6-4, 216, Sr.)

Burrow looked like a new quarterback Week 1 versus Georgia Southern. Throwing five first-half touchdowns, Burrow was dialed in from kickoff boasting an 85% completion rate with 278 passing yards. The senior quarterback showed excellent poise when in and out of the pocket putting together successful drives highlighted by above average accuracy. He showed the ability to make decisions when the pocket got muddy and when having to operate after his first read. Texas is a different beast than Georgia Southern but the Longhorns did surrender 331 passing yards to Louisiana Tech last week despite the 31-point victory.

Against seven ranked opponents last season, Burrow threw five touchdowns and interceptions apiece, completed 53% of his passes and averaged 212 passing yards a game. If taking out the finale versus UCF, Burrow averaged just 182 passing yards a game pocketing only one touchdown to four interceptions (51% completion rate). Barring certain situations, not all the mishaps are the fault of the quarterback but Burrow needs to show out against a gritty Texas squad in order to erase past blemishes. Last week vs. Georgia Southern: 85%, 278 yards, 5 TD.

#90 Rashard Lawrence – DT (6-3, 317, Sr.)

Lawrence showcases outstanding build and athleticism that teams covet for a first-round defensive tackle. Lawrence continues to prove his interior presence with a tremendous motor and rapid upper body movements to continually disengage from his matchup. LSU is not afraid to move the 300-pounder around as he screams versatility and creates an impact no matter the alignment. On his lone tackle of the opener, Lawrence showcased nearly all his potential that displays his well-deserved hype. Last week vs. Georgia Southern: tackle (TFL), sack, FF.

#18 K’Lavon Chaisson – OLB (6-4, 238, rSoph.)

After exactly a year of roaming the sidelines, Chaisson returned to the field for the Tigers and put together an admirable game. Showcasing his versatility, Chaisson accentuates the versatility of an edge defender functioning in coverage situations and as a consistent pass rusher. As noted in the tweet, Chaisson flips roles on third down, stays true to his assignment and then puts the cherry on top at the end of the play.

Chaisson’s quick-twitch athleticism paves way for him to be a chess piece among the front seven. Last week vs. Georgia Southern: 5 tackles, FF.

#7 Grant Delpit – SAF (6-3, 203, Jr.)

The heat-seeking missile did not miss a beat from 2018. Delpit fired on all cylinders last Saturday showcasing his range, acceleration and athleticism. Delpit’s football intelligence bursts off the tape being able to quickly diagnose and react accordingly.

He consistently shows the ability to explode through contact and work his way through traffic. Delpit’s biggest concern coming into the season was his tackling technique. Carrying over from LSU’s opener, Delpit’s tackling ability will be tested with plenty of perimeter runs and screen passes. Last week vs. Georgia Southern: 4 tackles (1.5 TFL).

#22 Kristian Fulton – CB (6-0, 192, Jr.)

Operating versus a triple-option Georgia Southern team last week, Fulton didn’t get much to work with as far as pass coverage goes. But when targeted, of course, he breaks up the pass. Fulton’s lower body fluidity paves way for him to matchup with any style receiver. If choosing to primarily shadow Texas’ Collin Johnson throughout the game, Fulton’s physicality and awareness will be heavily tested. His sticky coverage skills versus Johnson’s large catch radius play out for the best player versus player matchup this weekend. Last week vs. Georgia Southern: tackle, PBU.

Others to watch: #22 Clyde Edwards-Helaire – RB (5-9, 212, Jr.); #2 Justin Jefferson – WR (6-2, 195, Jr.); #79 Lloyd Cushenberry – C (6-4, 309, Jr.); #45 Michael Divinity – OLB (6-2, 238, Sr.); #6 Jacob Phillips – ILB (6-4, 229, Jr.).

No. 9 Texas

#11 Sam Ehlinger – QB (6-3, 230, Jr.)

A tough, hard-nosed player, Ehlinger has all the physical tools to operate in any offensive system. With a smooth delivery and reputable receiving unit, Ehlinger vividly displays the chemistry with his timing and placement. The junior is not biased toward one part of the field as he freely sprays the ball throughout with consistent mechanics and accuracy.

With near effortless arm strength, Ehlinger enjoys reading coverage from deep to short and planning accordingly. Despite being a solid scrambler with physical skills, he will tend to tuck the ball early after his first read and attempt to scamper for hard-earned yards. Last week vs. Louisiana Tech: 74%, 276 yards, 4 TD; 8 rushes, 34 yards.

#9 Collin Johnson – WR (6-6, 220, Sr.)

It’s hard to miss Johnson’s presence at 6-6. Partner that with smooth movement skills and savvy for the position and you have one of the best receivers in football. Johnson’s reliability as a pass catcher was on display this past Saturday highlighting his excellent concentration skills and body control.

Though not the quickest player when it comes to route running, Johnson finds plenty of ways to gain separation most due to his physicality. He is one of the best technicians when working on the outside versus press coverage with subtle hand motions to get initial separation. Last week vs. Louisiana Tech: 4 receptions, 59 yards, TD.

#6 Devin Duvernay – WR (5-11, 210, Sr.)

With six touches (including kickoff) on the opening drive, it was evident that Texas wants to heavily feature Duvernay in its offense in 2019. Duvernay finished with nine catches for 55 yards and an opening drive touchdown last week versus Louisiana Tech. He also toted the ball twice for four yards. The high-volume receiver showcases his top-end speed when working over the middle of the field and when being targeted behind the line of scrimmage. Last season, Duvernay put his ball tracking and high pointing skills on display showcasing a somewhat surprising catch radius. Last week vs. Louisiana Tech: 9 receptions, 55 yards, TD; 2 rushes, 4 yards.

#56 Zach Shackelford – C (6-4, 305, Sr.)

The preseason first team All-Big 12 center didn’t disappoint in the season opener. Showcasing a consistent kick slide with smooth transitions, Shackelford kept the pocket clean within the interior. The senior does an excellent job of re-positioning his hands while keeping his lower half in check. Showcasing an admirable anchor, Shackelford doesn’t often get put on skates when facing heavy-handed interior linemen and has the recovery skills to reestablish himself if things initially go wrong. Shackelford’s strength and technique will be constantly tested by a physical LSU defensive line led by Lawrence at defensive tackle.

#52 Samuel Cosmi – OT (6-5, 300, rSoph.)

On the first drive of the game, Cosmi made his presence known. With heavy and accurate hands, Cosmi has the hand technique to control his matchup and drive him out of the play. Partner that with a nasty demeanor and you have a dominate player. The 6-foot-5 redshirt sophomore locked down the left side for the Longhorns in Week 1 providing strength, athleticism and – most importantly – consistency. The heavy-handed tackle is also a smooth mover in space, locating his target and executing with accuracy.

Others to watch: #19 Brandon Jones – SAF (6-0, 210, Sr.); #73 Parker Braun – OG (6-3, 280, Sr.); #32 Malcolm Roach – DT (6-1, 295, Sr.). 

Christian Page is a scout and writer for Cover1.net. His scouting experience dates back to 2015. Christian has a background of radio along with collegiate athletic department experience and corporate marketing.