Scouting Report: Jarvis Landry, WR, LSU
Jarvis Landry is a player we’ve watched a lot over the last few years. He has some of the best hands in this year’s exceedingly deep receiving class, which is really saying something. Landry also has the ability to make some of the most absurd circus catches you will ever see. He plays the game with heart, focus and fearlessness. I think a lot of NFL teams would benefit by rostering the former LSU star, but fantasy value is another question that we’ll explore in this report.
Landry’s performance at the Combine was less than good. Let’s take a look at the numbers.
- Height - 5’11”
- Weight - 205
- Hands - 10 1/4”
- 40 - 4.77
- Bench - 12 reps
- Vertical Jump - 28.5”
- Broad Jump - 110”
These are some extremely poor agility numbers. So poor in fact, that we wonder just how healthy Landry was during the Combine. His numbers are so troubling that he’d have been better skipping the event entirely.
The poor numbers are particularly problematic because Landry has no single trait to hang his hat on. He’s not big and he’s not fast or explosive in his movements. If you go strictly by his combine numbers, this guy should not be able to get open against NFL corners on a consistent basis. Good thing we are willing to look past the numbers.
When Landry was asked to compare himself to LSU teammate Odell Beckham Jr., he gave a very direct answer that tells you why we want to look past the numbers in Landry’s case. “It’s like apples and oranges. We’re both great players. We’re both weird players. He takes the top off things a lot. For me, it’s intermediate, it’s special teams and kickoff. It’s the dirty work mostly, but you know, I love to do it.” The guy is not lying. Landry does love to the do the dirty work and it shows up on film.
When asked to describe how Cam Cameron’s NFL system made him a more complete player, Landry was to the point again. "Well he challenged us. He came with an NFL mindset to a college meeting and he challenged us mentally. He challenged us as far as time management, and he challenged us to train like a pro and think like a pro. In doing so, he brought the Digit System, which is probably the best system created”
Though Landry reportedly had a rough pro day--dropping a few passes, he did manage to improve his forty time with a reported 4.58. That’s a far less damaging time that what he posted in Indianapolis. This provides some hope and it’s also more in line with what we see on film. We anticipated Landry running about 4.55.
Let’s take a look at what we like about Landry.
- Toughness - This player has a will to win and make plays for his team. Physical and mental toughness. You can't teach it and Landry's got it.
- Hands - Landry has massive hands and he uses them exactly as you want a receiver to. He extends for the ball and snatches it out of the air. He has the ability to make eye-popping catches.
- Routes - He’s an intuitive route runner, and he’s very good for a college receiver. He works back to the quarterback well and has an effective double-move. We suspect he’ll continue to perfect this area of his game, because it’s an obvious must for him if he is going to get consistent separation in the NFL.
- Versatility - At LSU, Landry was moved around and lined up at all the different receiver positions. This could help him at the next level. Landry is a very intuitive receiver no matter where you put him.
- Blocking - NFL teams will notice this. Landry is one of the better blockers in this class both in terms of form and tenacity. He makes blocks consistently.
- Production - He posted nice numbers in a tough conference and he made the big plays too. He’s not just a stat guy.
Here's a look at Landry last season against Auburn. You can see the quality blocking and big play ability throughout.
In this game against Arkansas, Landry steps up after an injury to Odell Beckham Jr., and carries the load. Watch the circus catch on the play when Zach Mettenberger goes down. You will not see a better catch this year.
Landry’s game film can be intoxicating at times. The guy obviously makes big plays in big spots. His hands and his ability to focus in heavy traffic are both traits that NFL teams crave. Landry will lay out for a ball and he’ll take the hit to make the play. He is a quarterback’s friend to be sure. The issue for Landry at the next level is speed and agility. Can he get open consistently against NFL cornerbacks? He had the luxury of playing with a laser-armed quarterback at LSU. He may not have that next season depending on where he goes. He needs a quarterback who can get the ball into tight windows.
Getting open is going to be the huge thing. We know Landry can operate effectively against zone, but when teams go man, he’s going to have trouble getting more than a sliver against top cornerbacks. It will be hard to make him a go-to guy in that regard.
If Landry struggles with separation at the next level, he could end up being more of an opportunist, like Jerricho Cotchery or Jason Avant, who coincidentally play for the same team now. On the other hand, if Landry proves to be athletic and crafty enough to deal with press coverage and man coverage, he could evolve into more of a Hines Ward, who consistently made big blocks and tough catches for years. The right quarterback and offense will help in this scenario.
My feel on Landry is that he goes in the third or fourth round. He could be very interesting for a team like Seattle, Carolina or New England. I’ll update his status after the draft.
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Other 2014 Scouting Reports:
- Sammy Watkins, WR, Clemson
- Odell Beckham, Jr., WR, LSU
- Kelvin Benjamin, WR, Florida State
- Allen Robinson, WR, Penn State
- Jordan Matthews, WR, Vanderbilt
- Brandin Cooks, WR, Oregon State
- Carlos Hyde, RB, Ohio State
- Terrance West, RB, Towson
- Jerick McKinnon, RB, Georgia Southern
- Eric Ebron, TE, North Carolina
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