CU at the NFL Draft

April 29th

Contracts for CU’s undrafted free agents (Montez gets some guaranteed money)


QB Steven Montez … Washington Redskins … Three year contract … $2.295 million … $10,000 signing bonus … $35,000 guaranteed salary

CB Delrick Abrams … Atlanta Falcons … Three-year contract … $2,285,000 million … no signing bonus … no guaranteed salary

WR Tony Brown … Cleveland Browns … Hasn’t signed a reported contract yet …


April 28th

Three drafted Buffs slated to receive over $4 million in signing bonuses

From … Based upon where CU’s three draftees were selected, Laviska Shenault, Davion Taylor and Arlington Hambright are scheduled to receive contracts totaling over $14 million, with over $4 million in signing bonuses …

Laviska Shenault … Round 2, Overall pick No. 42

Total value: $7,696,063

Signing bonus: $3,157,137

Davion Taylor … Round 3, Overall Pick No. 103

Total value: $4,057,645

Signing bonus: $832,294

Arlington Hambright … Round 7, Overall Pick No. 226

Total value: $2,734,109

Signing bonus: $99,109


April 27th

Colorado holds onto No. 23 on the all-time list of NFL draftees

From … With three draft picks in 2020, Colorado now has had a total 275 players drafted into the NFL, good enough to stay in 23rd place on the all-time list. The Buffs lost ground to former No. 22, Auburn, which jumped over Purdue this year. The other schools around CU remained pretty stagnant on the list, with the exception of Minnesota, which moved into a tie with Florida State for No. 25 all-time …

The updated list (with 2020 NFL Draft picks in parentheses) …

No. 21 – Auburn (6) … 285

No. 22 – Purdue (2) … 282

No. 23 – Colorado (3) … 275

No. 24 – Arkansas (2) … 273

No. 25t – Florida State (2) … 271

No. 25t – Minnesota (5) … 271

No. 27 – Stanford (2) … 267


April 26th

Grading CU’s draft picks

Laviska Shenault – Jacksonville Jaguars – 2nd round, 42nd overall pick

  • CBS Sports … A- … Ridiculous YAC. Horse in the open field. Explosive. Good, not great routes. Tracks it well deep. Injury concerns. Best pick available over need here for Jacksonville.
  • ESPN … After going defense in the first round the Jaguars finally get Gardner Minshew some help on offense with Shenault. He’s a big receiver (6-foot-1, 227 pounds) who battled injuries and inconsistent quarterback play at Colorado the past two seasons. The Jaguars needed to add a receiver because DJ Chark is the only receiver under contract beyond 2020. Shenault — who describes himself as a mix between Larry Fitzgerald, Jarvis Landry and Julio Jones — played all three receiver spots but is a better fit outside. Shenault had core muscle surgery after the combine and his doctor sent a letter to every team saying he would be fully recovered by April 25. Shenault participated in some combine drills despite dealing with the injury, which obviously played into his 4.58 time in the 40-yard dash.

Davion Taylor – Philadelphia Eagles – 3rd round, 103rd overall pick

  • CBS Sports … A … Taylor got a raw label during pre-draft process I didn’t see. Crazy fast. Takes on and defeats blocks with authority. Played and held his own flexed out as cornerback at times. Major range. Reads keys quickly. New-age LB and exactly what Philadelphia needs
  • ESPN … The theme of the Eagles’ offseason has been speed, and they added some more with the selection of Taylor, a former state champion sprinter who ran a 4.49 40-yard dash at the scouting combine. He wasn’t able to play high school football on Friday or Saturday nights as his family observed the Adventist Sabbath, but he received parental permission to play college ball. He still has a lot of developing to do as a player, but he brings an intriguing skill set to an Eagles linebacker group that could use a shot in the arm.

Arlington Hambright – Chicago Bears – 7th round, 226th overall pick

  • CBS Sports … D+ … Tall, run-block specialist who transferred from Oklahoma State. Has to get stronger and play with better pass pro balance
  • ESPN … The Bears waited until the seventh round to address the offensive line. The unit was a major area of concern — across the board — after the group underperformed in 2019. Hambright is a well-traveled player who went from junior college to Oklahoma State to Colorado as a graduate transfer. The Bears found a late-round steal in starting left tackle Charles Leno Jr. back in 2014, but seventh-round picks are usually longshots. Hambright played tackle in college but could end up at guard. The Bears are looking to get bigger up front. Hambright is listed at 6-foot-5.

Video – Davion Taylor: “Welcome to Philadelphia”



April 25th

Buffs sign as undrafted free agents

The list of CU’s undrafted free agents … 

  • Linebacker Delrick Abrams, Jr. … with the Atlanta Falcons
  • Quarterback Steven Montez … with Washington Redskins (keeping alive CU’s streak of undrafted quarterbacks, dating back to 1997 and Koy Detmer, taken in the seventh round by the Philadelphia Eagles)
  • Wide receiver Tony Brown … with Cleveland Browns

All-Time WRs taken in 1st & 2nd Rounds of #NFLDraft

  • 16 – USC
  • 8 – Arizona State
  • 7 – Colorado
  • 6 – Washington
  • 4 – Arizona
  • 4 – UCLA
  • 3 – Cal
  • 3 – Stanford
  • 3 – Oregon State
  • 3 – Utah
  • 2 – Oregon
  • 0 – Washington State (interesting that, with all of the wide receivers going through the Mike Leach system, that none of them ever made it through to the first or second round of the NFL Draft)

Chicago Bears take offensive tackle Arlington Hambright 

From … Tackle Arlington Hambright became the third Colorado player selected in the 2020 NFL Draft on Saturday when the Chicago Bears used a seventh-round pick to take Hambright.

Hambright, the 12th pick in the seventh round (226th overall), joined wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr. (second round, Jacksonville) and linebacker Davion Taylor (third round, Philadelphia) as Buffaloes to hear their names called in the draft.

The 6-5, 300-pound Hambright started all 12 games for the Buffs last season at left tackle after coming in as a graduate transfer from Oklahoma State. He was named the Pac-12 Offensive Lineman of the Week after CU’s 16-13 win over Stanford, one of three times he was nominated, with the others coming against Nebraska and Washington. He finished the year with 75 knockdown blocks, 12 touchdown blocks and 14 perfect plays on passing touchdowns.

He also became the first Buff taken by the Bears since 1995, when Chicago used a first-round pick to take Heisman Trophy winner Rashaan Salaam.

Buffs who have been picked by Bears 

Player … Position … Year … Round … Pick

John Zeigler … Back … 1946 … 8th …64th overall
Greg Horton … Offensive Tackle … 1974 … 3rd … 56th overall
Randy Geist … Defensive Back … 1974 … 16th  394th overall
Mike Spivey … Defensive Back … 1977 … 2nd … 43rd overall
David Tate … Cornerback … 1988 … 8th round … 208th overall
Dennis Collier … Cornerback … 1994 … 7th round … 205th overall
Rashaan Salaam … Tailback … 1995 … 1st round … 21st overall

Jaguars’ head coach Doug Marrone on Viska: “The guy is a definite playmaker”

From …

Doug Marrone: (opening statement) “I think with a player like Laviska Shenault Jr., we feel there are multiple areas where he can make plays. You may not have known about him before, but you may have saw a couple of highlights they showed where he was a Wildcat quarterback and lined up in the backfield as a running back and moved all over. He is just a tough guy. He does not run out of bounds. He breaks tackles. He can really do a lot of things. He is physical, he is fast. The guy is a definite playmaker. We talked about getting playmakers on offense and today was the start of that. It is still the same theme – we need to stop the run. We understand that, and we feel that we have some good pass rushers with [K’Lavon] Chaisson being there in the first round. Now, helping out in the middle now with [DeVon] Hamilton. We really feel good about him. He is a big guy. We think he is going to get a lot better even though he is really good right now. You can see him on the move. He has such great strength at the holding point. I think he is going to really help us on the inside. Again, trying to stay with the same theme of what we are trying to get done and that is what we were able to get done today.”

DM: (On WR Laviska Shenault Jr.’s versatility and ability to play from multiple different spots on offense) “I talked to him. Obviously, we feel he has the size and the speed to play outside. After we had drafted him and I got on the phone with him, both [Offensive Coordinator] Jay [Gruden] and I had a plan. We talked about how we’re going to do it and how we’re going to use him. I told him, I said, ‘Look, we have some plans,’ and you can put him in the backfield, he can play Wildcat, you can put him as the F-tight end, you can do a lot of things with him. You see it on his tape in 2018 and 2019. That’s one of the things that we looked at; we went back there, and I said, ‘Look, we can do all those things, but the whole key is going to be how well you grasp it, how well you pick it up.’ Because if he can, make no mistake about it, we want to be able to do those things.”

DM: (On what sort of feedback Wide Receivers Coach Keenan McCardell offered on Laviska Shenault Jr. and how much he relied on his evaluation) “Keenan is a guy that has played the position.  He’s always done a very good job of evaluating the receiver position along with our scouts, and has always done a good job of developing guys in that position.  He has great insight. So anyone who has great insight and is a good evaluator, you’re going to listen to him.  It’s part of the process.  You know, our scouts are at schools talking to those coaches, our coaches talk to them, [Offensive Coordinator] Jay Gruden has to look at them, see how he likes them, I’ve got to look at them.  So there’s a lot of things that go on and Keenan’s obviously going to play an important role in this kid’s future. He’s going to be in that meeting room.  He’s going to learn from him. He’s going to work.  He’s going to become a better football player just because he’s got a good coach like Keenan McCardell.”

Laviska Shenault’s post-pick press conference: “I’m just ready to work. That’s really all there is to that”

(On his thoughts about being drafted in the second round) “Definitely had first round hopes, but, I mean, at the end of the day it is what it is. I understand everything happens for a reason, but

(On his physicality on the field) “That’s how I live my life, being tough and I take it to the field. So anytime you see me you see it’s being tough.”

(On why he likes to be known as a football player rather than just a wide receiver) “I think I’m an athlete. I think I can move around everywhere and do anything that’s at task, you know, and dominate in different places, do what everyone loves.”

(On why he describes himself as a mix of Jarvis Landry, Larry Fitzgerald and Julio Jones) “I said Jarvis Landry because everyone knows he plays with that dog mindset and that dog mentality and he says it and he makes it known. He’s not a big receiver at all, it’s not about the size, it’s about the attitude he plays with and how aggressive he plays, and I think I do the same thing. Larry Fitzgerald, he’s just like a business person. When he gets on the field you already know he’s strictly about business and he’s gonna get the job done. Julio Jones, he’s just a freak and he can do anything; do everything. We’ve seen him do everything so that’s just that can-do-everything type of athlete and I think I can do the same thing.”

(On how he feels about playing with Gardner Minshew II) “I’m excited, I can’t wait. Just ready to get that bond together and it all starts with the bond and I can’t wait to definitely, definitely get on the field.”

(On if he kept track of Minshew Magic) “I didn’t, not as much, but I know when he started playing he definitely made a mark, but I didn’t keep that much attention towards it.”

(On whether his father passing is his motivation and if there’s any correlation with his dreadlocks) “I think it’s just part of my motivation. I think I have a couple of motivation things that’s the reason why I’m doing what I’m doing. And my dreadlocks, when my dad died I just decided not to cut them no more and I like them, of course. It’s my fashion.”

(On what it means to be drafted to the NFL) “I think it’s just another door open, just another level unlocked. There’s plenty more levels to it so I’m not stopping right now, and just gonna keep on leveling up. It’s all actions.”

(On how scoring six rushing touchdowns as a sophomore at the University of Colorado will translate to the NFL.) “Most definitely. I love getting the ball anywhere I can create mismatches. I love getting the ball in my hands when its right off the snap too. That’s just what I like to do. I like to gain those yards. It doesn’t have to be easy, it can be hard. But I definitely like to get the ball to me quick and get those hard yards and those red zone yards. So, yeah I’m definitely looking forward to it.”

(On how scouting reports mention his lack of speed from his 40-yard time, but that does not equate to his proven speed for breakaway plays on the football field.) “First off, my 40 time, I ran that while needing surgery. So that was the hard thing, just not being able to put in all the work I wanted to because it was mostly rehab and rest the whole time prepping for the combine. So that was the bad thing about that.”

(On what would be a true 40 time if he was perfectly healthy.) “If I was perfectly healthy, I really think anywhere between 4.39-4.44.”

(On why he chose to attend University of Colorado over schools like LSU and Alabama.) “Making this decision was really more of what feels right. Also, Colorado used to be a team that was very good. If you watch the 30 for 30’s you see how aggressive they play and how good they were. I just wanted to try to bring that back as much as possible.”

(On how much he met with the Jaguars prior to the draft, how those conversations went and what the Jaguars said they liked about him.) “I think I did meet with them at the combine and I had just a lot of talks with the receivers coach [Keenan McCardell]. He said he just liked me overall, he likes me as a player, and he likes how I can move around everywhere and just dominate in every position. We didn’t spend that much time together though; it wasn’t like a lot of time. It was kind of shocking to be honest.”

(On how excited he is to play for his new wide receiver coach, Keenan McCardell.) “Very excited. It’s always good to be under somebody who has a lot of experience. I’m just ready to get over there to learn and just get better every day.”

(On plans to shave off the dreads for the NFL.) “No.”


April 24th

Davion Taylor taken in the third round by the Philadelphia Eagles

Press Release from Colorado outside linebacker Davion Taylor took the next step in what has been an improbable journey Friday night when he was selected in the third round of the NFL Draft by the Philadelphia Eagles.

Taylor, taken with the 103rd pick overall (39th in the third round) became the second Buff taken thus far in the draft, following Jacksonville’s pick of wide receiver Laviska Shenault Jr. in the second round.

The 6-0, 228-pound Taylor did not play high school football because Friday and Saturday games conflicted with his family’s religious beliefs. But he finally obtained his mother’s blessing to play the sport when he enrolled at Coahoma (Miss.) Community College and quickly made up for lost time. He made the football team as a freshman walk-on, then became one of the nation’s top junior college prospects as a sophomore when he finished with 87 tackles (three for loss), three pass breakups and one interception.

Taylor’s athleticism caught the eye of Division I coaches across the nation, as he also ran track at CCC and qualified for the NJCAA national championships in the 100-meter dash. He signed with Colorado and started 10 games in 2018, when he finished with 52 tackles, including nine for loss. He also ran track as a junior and finished sixth in the Pac-12 100-meter dash.

Taylor’s game improved dramatically as a senior under the tutelage of defensive coordinator Tyson Summers. Playing CU’s hybrid safety/linebacker spot, he sharpened his instincts each week and earned honorable mention All-Pac-12 honors, finishing with 69 tackles (8.5 for loss) and seven pass breakups. He significantly improved his pass coverage skills and is considered to have a huge upside as he continues to learn the nuances of the game.

Taylor then put together an outstanding NFL Combine, where he ran a 4.49-second 40-yard dash and recorded a 35-inch vertical leap. His draft stock steadily climbed throughout the spring, culminating with his selection Friday.

Davion Taylor post-draft analysis 

From ESPN … The Eagles declined Nigel Bradham’s option and Kamu Grugier-Hill signed with the Dolphins. Nathan Gerry missed too many tackles last year, free-agent acquisition Jatavis Brown makes more of an impact on special teams than on defense and 2019 undrafted free agent T.J. Edwards played just 110 snaps this year. So the Eagles had a pressing need at linebacker. Taylor should make an immediate impact on third down and develop into a starter in time.

Buffs who have been picked by Philadelphia – Taylor the First Buff since Jeremy Bloom to be drafted by Eagles

Player … Position … Year … Round … Pick

Ernie Lewis … Back … 1946 … 9th round … No. 77
John Fabling … Back … 1946 … 21st round … No. 197
Tom Brookshier … Back … 1953 … 10th round … No. 117
Bob Salerno … Guard … 1959 … 21st round … No. 243
Jim Perkins … Offensive Tackle … 1962 … 7th round … No. 86
Mike Woulfe … Guard … 1962 … 15th round … No. 208
Ralph Heck … Linebacker/Center … 1963 … 11th round … No. 144
Lynn Baker (basketball) … 1967 … 16th round … No. 412
Charlie Johnson … Nose Tackle … 1977 … 7th round … No. 175
Dan McMillen … Outside Linebacker … 1986 … 5th round … No. 128
Leonard Renfro … Defensive Tackle … 1993 … 1st round … No. 24
Mitch Berger … Punter/Place Kicker … 1994 … 6th round … No. 193
Koy Detmer … Quarterback … 1997 … 7th round … No. 207
Melvin Thomas … Offensive Guard … 1998 … 7th round … No. 240
Michael Lewis … Strong Safety … 2002 … 2nd round … No. 58
Jeremy Bloom … Wide Receiver … 2006 … 5th round … No. 147

Laviska Shenault picked by Jacksonville Jaguars in the second round

Press release from … Colorado’s Laviska Shenault Jr. became the Buffaloes’ highest draft pick since 2011 Friday when the Jacksonville Jaguars took the talented wide receiver with the 42nd overall pick in the NFL Draft.

The 6-foot-1, 227-pound Shenault opted to make himself available for the draft after his junior year with the Buffaloes. Taken with the 10th pick in the second round, Shenault became CU’s highest overall pick in the draft since 2011, when tackle Nate Solder went to New England with the 17th pick in the first round and cornerback Jimmy Smith was selected by Baltimore with the 27th pick in the first round.

Shenault turned heads around the nation with a breakout sophomore year at CU when he caught 86 passes for 1,011 yards and six touchdowns while also rushing 17 times for 115 yards and five scores. He followed up with a solid junior year when, despite being the focal point of opposing defenses all year, he still caught 56 passes for 764 yards and four touchdowns to go with 161 yards rushing and two touchdowns.

Heading into last season the DeSoto, Texas, prep product was projected as a potential top 10 pick, but a core muscle injury that limited him for roughly half the year dropped his stock slightly. Shenault underwent surgery immediately after the NFL Combine in February and a recent doctor’s report pronounced him 100 percent healthy again.

Shenault’s speed and strength have impressed NFL scouts and front office personnel since he burst onto the scene in his sophomore seasons. In a six-game span, he posted 780 receiving yards, 87 rushing yards and 11 total touchdowns. His play-making ability made him a threat to score from anywhere on the field and his size and strength made him one of the nation’s leaders in yards after catch and yards after first contact.

Shenault’s projected salary

Total $7,696,063

Signing Bonus $3,157,137

Towards the 2020 cap $1,399,284

Buffs chosen by the Jacksonville Jaguars up to two

Player … Position … Year … Round … Pick

Chris Hudson … Cornerback … 1995 … Third Round (No. 71 overall)

Player … Position … Years …

Chris Hudson, Cornerback … 1995-1998
Deon Figures, Cornerback … 1997-1998
Brandon Southward, Linebacker … 1999
Chris Naeole, Offensive Guard … 2002-2008
Brian Iwuh, Outside Linebacker … 2006-2009
Terrence Wheatley, Cornerback … 2010
Toney Clemons, Wide Receiver … 2012

Is it possible that Laviska Shenault slides into the third round?

Right after the 2019 NFL Draft concluded, Pacific Takes put out a list for its top candidates for first round picks for the 2020 drafts.

CU’s Laviska Shenault came in at No. 6. Not the No. 6 wide receiver, mind you, but the No. 6 pick overall.

A year later – another year with injuries later – the 2020 NFL Draft has concluded its first round, and not only was Laviska Shenault not the No. 6 overall pick, he is not going to be the No. 6 wide receiver taken in the draft.

So, how far will Shenault fall?

According to analyst Daniel Jeremiah, Shenault is the 11th-best player remaining on the board, and should go early in the second round:

Shenault is arguably the best athlete in the entire draft class. He is tall with a thick, muscular build. He lined up everywhere in Colorado’s offense — out wide, in the slot, at running back and he even took snaps as a Wildcat quarterback. Shenault isn’t a nuanced route runner, but he is a monster with the ball in his hands. He excels on quick hitters, fly sweeps and vertical routes. He has strong hands and his transition into a running back is immediate after the catch. He steps through tacklers and has a burst to finish. He is very competitive. Overall, Shenault comes with some durability concerns and will need time to develop into a fully polished wideout, but he can have an immediate impact for a creative offensive coordinator. He’s too big, strong and fast to not contribute. His drafting team just has to figure it out.

Meanwhile, over at, Shenault is rated as the 30th-best player left on the board, just three spots shy of slipping into the third round:

Shenault has excellent size, average length and below-average timed speed. He’s a versatile weapon who’s ability to move around the formation makes it easier to create favorable matchups. He’s at his best with the ball in his hands, whether that’s after the catch or on a carry. He’s an instinctive open-field runner who picks up yards after initial contact and has the ability to make defenders miss. 

The NFL Draft resumes tonight, with the second and third rounds (resuming at 5:00 p.m., MT) …

Six wide receivers taken in the first round – but not Viska

From the Daily Camera … Laviska Shenault will have to wait at least another day to hear his name called.

The star receiver from the Colorado Buffaloes generally is viewed as a player with first-round talent, but a history of injuries and late surgery following the February draft combine to repair a nagging core muscle injury perhaps conspired against Shenault on Thursday, as the first round of an NFL Draft conducted virtually did not include the CU junior.

Shenault is likely to hear his name on Friday, as the second and third rounds unfold beginning at 5 p.m. MT. Rounds four through seven will be held Saturday beginning at 10 a.m. MT. CU has not boasted a first-round pick since 2011, when tackle Nate Solder (17th overall, New England) and defensive back Jimmy Smith (27th, Baltimore) both were selected in the opening round.

At 6-foot-1 and 225 pounds, Shenault has the prototypical frame for an NFL receiver, and despite dealing with injuries for the bulk of his career he made a habit of running roughshod over smaller opponents. Over the past two seasons, Shenault caught 142 passes for 1,775 yards and 10 touchdowns. He added another 276 yards and seven touchdowns on the ground, proving to be a dependable weapon out of the wildcat formation in short-yardage situations.

Continue reading story here

First round breakdown … 

8 seniors
24 underclassmen

6 Cornerbacks
2 Defensive linemen
2 EDGE rushers
4 Linebackers
7 Offensive linemen
4 Quarterbacks
1 Running back
6 Wide receivers

19 offense
13 defense

Big 10 5
Big 12 5
PAC 12 3 – Justin Herbert, QB, Oregon (No. 6); Austin Jackson, OT, USC (No. 18); Brandon Aiyuk, WR, Arizona State (No. 25)
SEC 15

The Southeastern Conference often touts itself as college football’s toughest league, usually pointing to the number of players it sends to the NFL annually. On Day 1 of the 2020 NFL draft, the conference set a new benchmark in that department.

Fifteen players from the SEC heard their names called in the first round Thursday night, a record in the common draft era (since 1967), according to ESPN Stats & Information research.

That surpassed the previous record of 12 first-round picks from a single conference, achieved three times before by the ACC (2006) and SEC (2013 and 2017).


April 23rd

Laviska Shenault looking to become CU’s fifth wide receiver to go in the first round

From … With 24 first-round NFL Draft picks in their history, the Colorado Buffaloes have had their fair share of selections at a number positions.

The list includes five offensive linemen, four running backs and four defensive linemen — positions for which the Buffaloes have been known throughout the years.

But wide receiver has also been a productive first-round position for the Buffaloes. In fact, if CU’s Laviska Shenault Jr. hears his name called Thursday night, he will be the fifth wide receiver in Buffs history to go in the first round.

For the last two seasons, Shenault has been part of a celebrated group of Buffs wide receivers that also included K.D. Nixon, Juwann Winfree (a sixth-round pick last season) and Tony Brown (a possible draft pick this year). That group came on the heels of another standout group — Shay Fields, Bryce Bobo and Devin Ross — that helped lead CU to the 2016 Pac-12 South title.

But those groups are just two of a long list of outstanding receiving corps the Buffs have produced over the years, including a lineup in the early 1990s that boasted three future first-round picks.

That’s right — three first-round picks.  In 1992 and ’93, Colorado’s roster included Charles E. Johnson, Michael Westbrook and Rae Carruth, and all three ended up as first-round NFL picks: Johnson to Pittsburgh in 1994, Westbrook to Washington in 1995 and Carruth to Carolina in 1997. Those picks came on the heels of CU’s first wide receiver taken in the first round, Mike Pritchard to Atlanta in 1991.

It was part of a 10-year stretch that saw the Buffs have eight receivers drafted. Along with Pritchard, Johnson, Westbrook and Carruth, the list also included Jeff Campbell (fifth round, Detroit, 1990), Rico Smith (sixth round, Cleveland, 1992), Phil Savoy (seventh round, Arizona, 1998) and Darrin Chiaverini (fifth round, Cleveland, 1999).

But in terms of an abundance of talent on one roster, it would be hard to match those 1992 and ’93 CU teams, whose wide receivers coach was a young man by the name of Karl Dorrell.

Dorrell returned to Colorado this year in Februar,y when he was named the Buffaloes’ 27th head coach. Along with coaching CU’s receivers in 1992-93, he also served as an offensive assistant at CU from 1995-98 — meaning he coached five of the eight Buffs receivers drafted in the 1990s.

Continue reading story here


April 22nd 

CU Draft Prospects …

Biographies and valuations from

Offensive tackle Arlington Hambright … Hambright joined the Buffaloes in the summer of 2019 as a graduate transfer from Oklahoma State. He started all 12 games at left tackle for UC, earning honorable mention All-Pac-12 honors. The native of Ypsilanti, Michigan, played two years at Garden City Community College, including the school’s 2016 national title-winning campaign. After redshirting his first year with the Cowboys, he started five games at left tackle in 2018 before missing seven contests due to injury and returning to play as a reserve in the team’s Liberty Bowl appearance.

Overview ... Hambright played tackle as a senior at Colorado, but will need to move inside due to his lack of functional length. He plays with a good combination of agility and play strength to fit with a zone scheme or pin-and-pull rushing attack as a guard who can get into space and land on the move. His stiff punch can discombobulate lesser college rushers, but an NFL offensive line coach will need to correct the oversetting and lunging in order for Hambright to hold up against pro competition. He has enough athleticism, power and twitch to earn a back-end roster spot.

Grade … 5.69 … Chance to make end of roster or practice squad …

Wide receiver  Tony Brown … Brown began his collegiate career at Texas Tech, where he hoped to be the next Tech receiver to make his name in the NFL. He played in all 13 games as a reserve pass-catcher his true freshman season (14-250-17.9, one TD) but saw his production drop a bit despite starting two of 11 games played in 2016 (13-128-9.8). Brown decided to move on from Lubbock after that season, eventually choosing Colorado, where he could play for the receivers coach that recruited him to Tech (Darren Chiaverini). His high school coach, Mike Moschetti, was a former CU quarterback. Brown redshirted in 2017 and worked his way into the starting lineup the following year (32-333-10.4, one TD, six starts in 12 games). He tied for the team lead with 56 receptions (707 yards, 12.6 per, five scores) in 12 games (eight starts) as a senior, earning honorable mention All-Pac-12 honors.

Overview … Outside receiver who makes up for a lack of speed with crisp, clever routes and above-average contested-catch toughness. Brown is a smart, competitive receiver with a completion percentage on his targets that was 10 points higher than his quarterback’s overall total in 2019. He’s more linear than fluid in his movements, but he changes direction without much speed loss underneath. He has very little special teams experience, which could hurt his chances if he doesn’t impress with his testing numbers.

Grade … 5.69 … Chance to make end of roster or practice squad …


April 21st

CBS ranks CU draft prospects

From CBS Sports

Where CBS Sports has CU players ranked, both overall and by their position …

37 – Laviska Shenault Jr. – WR (7)
130 – Davion Taylor – LB (10)
280 – Steven Montez – QB (16)
420 – Tony Brown – WR (62)
509 – Delrick Abrams Jr. – CB (53)
572 – Alex Kinney – P (9)
613 – Arlington Hambright – OL (95)
744 – Mikial Onu – S (55)

The NFL Draft goes seven rounds, with a total (including compensatory picks) of 255 draft picks


April 20th 

Quirky CU Draft Facts 

— On two occasions, CU Buffs have been “Mr. Irrelevant”, the last choice in the NFL Draft. In 1977, the Minnesota Vikings selected fullback Jim Kelleher, while in 1984 the Los Angeles Raiders selected quarterback Randy Essington. CU was the only school with two players earning this distinction until South Carolina had the final players of the 2009 and 2013 drafts;

— Nine times in Colorado history, an undergraduate has declared for the NFL Draft, (including Isaiah Oliver for the 2018 Draft), and all nine players have been drafted. Wide receiver Laviska Shenault should make it an even ten this year;

— CU has never had the No. 1 overall draft pick, but has had the No. 2 overall pick, with fullback Bo Matthews going No. 2 to San Diego in the 1974 NFL Draft;

— Overall, Colorado has had six top ten picks, including Matthews, HB Byron “Whizzer” White (No. 4 to Pittsburgh in 1938); WR Michael Westbrook (No. 4 to Washington in 1995); TE J.V. Cain (No. 7 to St. Louis in 1974); CB Mark Haynes (No. 8 to N.Y. Giants in 1980); and OG Chris Naeole (No. 10 to New Orleans);

— Starting in 1994, the NFL limited the draft to seven rounds. Since then, only 13 teams have had double digit draftees in the same draft, including the 1995 draft, when the 1994 Buffs had ten players drafted. In that draft, CU had seven players taken in the first 71 picks, the first time that one school had as many as seven players taken in the first 75 picks;

— In the 1977 draft, five Buffs were selected in the second round, with all five taken within 18 picks of each other;

— In the 1996 draft, CU had only seven seniors available, with five of those players being drafted (and a sixth player signing as a free agent). The five players drafted were: OG Heath Irwin (4th round; New England); DE Daryl Price (4th round; San Francisco); C Bryan Stoltenberg (6th round; San Diego); CB T.J. Cunningham (6th round; Seattle); and DT Kerry Hicks (7th round; Carolina);

— In the decade between 1991 and 2000, Colorado had 58 players drafted, second in the nation. In the past decade, 2010 to 2019, Colorado had … 15.


April 19th

CU NFL Draftees – It’s been pretty quiet decade for Buffs

CU finished the 2019 NFL draft with only one selection, with Juwann Winfree being selected by the Denver Broncos in the sixth round. The 2019 draft represents the sixth draft in the past ten years in which Colorado has had fewer than two players selected, including three seasons (2010, 2015, and 2016) in which no Buffs were taken.

The past decade of CU players selected in the NFL draft:

2010 (0)

2011 (4)
17. Nate Solder, OT, New England (1)
27. Jimmy Smith, CB, Baltimore (1)
118. Jalil Brown, CB, Kansas City (4)
227. Scotty McKnight, WR, N.Y. Jets (7)

2012 (2)
160. Ryan Miller, OG, Cleveland (5)
231. Tony Clemons, WR, Pittsburgh (7)

2013 (2)
109. David Bakhtiari, OT, Green Bay (4)
172. Nick Kasa, TE, Oakland (6)

2014 (1)
45. Paul Richardson, WR, Seattle (2)

2015 (0)

2016 (0)

2017 (4)
60. Chidobe Awuzie, CB, Dallas (2)
66. Ahkello Witherspoon, CB, San Francisco (3)
111. Tedric Thompson, SS, Seattle (4)
246. Jordan Carrell, DT, Dallas (7)

2018 (1)
58. Isaiah Oliver, CB, Atlanta (2)

2019 (1)
187. Juwann Winfree, WR, Denver (6)

CU Draft Prospects …

Biographies and valuations from

Laviska Shenault … Laviska Shenault became one of the nation’s top receivers in 2018, and was named Colorado’s MVP even though he only played in nine games (eight starts). He was a first-team All-Pac-12 selection after leading the FBS with 9.6 receptions per game and ranking fourth in the country with 112.3 receiving yards per contest (86-1,011-11.8, six TDs). He also scored on five of 17 rushes on the year, making him the only player in the country to have five rushing and receiving touchdowns. Shenault was a second-team all-conference selection in 2019 after seeing a reduction in his production (56-764-13.6, four TDs receiving; 23-161-7.0, two TDs rushing) in 11 games (eight starts). He flashed as a true freshman in 2017, leading the Buffaloes with 24 yards per catch (7-168 in 12 games as a reserve). Shenault helped DeSoto High School (Texas) win its first-ever football state title his senior year (46-825, nine TDs).

Overview … “2 Live” is both talented and stoic as a three-level threat with outstanding physical traits and ball skills. 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.

Grade … 6.35 … Will be a starter within two seasons …

Davion Taylor … Taylor had an unusual path to Pac-12 football. Growing up in Magnolia, Mississippi, he played football throughout high school but was not allowed to play in games on Friday or Saturday night as his family observed the Seventh-day Adventist Sabbath. Taylor was also a state champion sprinter and triple jumper, though he missed the state meet his junior year because it was on a Saturday. When Davion turned 18, he received his mother’s blessings to change his observance to play college football. He nearly didn’t make the team at Coahoma Community College but wound up becoming a starter during his freshman year. Taylor was rated a four-star junior college recruit after his second year at Coahoma, and Colorado snatched him up. He started 10 of 12 games played in 2018 (52 tackles, nine for loss, one sack, three pass breakups). Taylor also started 10 of 12 games played as a senior, garnering honorable mention All-Pac-12 notice by posting 69 stops, 8.5 for loss and tying for the team lead with seven pass breakups. He also continued his work on the track in Boulder, finishing sixth in the 100 meters at the Pac-12 Outdoor Championships.

Overview ... Traits-based linebacker project with rare speed and explosiveness who may need an extended developmental runway to counter his lack of experience and awareness. Religious beliefs prevented him from playing high school ball (other than a single game) and he is still in the early stages of learning and applying proper technique and fundamentals in all phases of the game. While his inexperience shows up plenty on tape, he has flashes that show off what he could be capable of in the future. Scouts say he’s very coachable and that he’s one of Mel Tucker’s (current CU head coach and former NFL coach) favorites. At best, he develops into a playmaking starter after two or three years. At worst, he should be a plus special teams talent fairly quickly.

Grade … 6.18 … Good backup who could become a starter … Rounds 3-4 …

Steven Montez … Alfred Montez, Steven’s father, played quarterback at Texas Tech and Western New Mexico before playing one season with the Oakland Raiders. The younger Montez has the talent to have a much longer professional career. He redshirted for the Buffaloes in 2015 after a successful high school career in El Paso. Montez started three of 10 games played in 2016, earning the team’s Most Outstanding Freshman award (83 of 140, 59.3 completion percentage, 1,078 yards, nine touchdowns, five interceptions). Pac-12 coaches voted him honorable mention all-conference the following season after he started all 12 games (228 of 337, 60.5 completion percentage, 2,975 yards, 18 touchdowns, nine interceptions). As a junior, he started all 12 games again, completing 64.7 percent of his passes (258 of 396) for 2,849 yards and 19 touchdowns and nine interceptions. Montez started all 12 games for the Buffaloes in 2019, as well, completing 255 of 405 passes (63.0 percent) for 2,808 yards and 17 touchdowns with 10 interceptions. He also showed some mobility during his career at UC, running for over 950 yards and scoring 12 times on the ground.

Overview … Montez has good size with decent arm talent and mobility but has failed to take steps forward as a three-year starter. He’s slow to get through progressions and doesn’t filter through coverages well enough to craft sustainable passing plans. Teams may see him as a developmental prospect based upon physical traits, but his interceptions were mostly easy takeaways and that doesn’t figure to improve against faster talent on the backend.

Grade … 5.48 … Priority Free Agent …

CU not “DBU” … but the Buffs are not far off

The Buffs are right up there with the blue-bloods of college football when it comes to defensive backs selected.

Below is a list of the schools (source: which have had the most defensive backs drafted in Common Draft Era (since 1967, when the NFL and AFL began taking steps towards their merger in 1970):

61- Ohio State

59- USC

52- Notre Dame

49- Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas, Miami

48- Colorado

44- Florida State

Colorado at No. 23 on the all-time list of NFL draftees

From … Colorado has had 272 players drafted into the NFL, with (hopefully) several more to be added to the list in 2019.  Arkansas and Florida State are right behind Colorado, and may pass the Buffs this year.

No. 21 – Purdue … 280

No. 22 – Auburn … 279

No. 23 – Colorado … 272

No. 24 – Arkansas … 271

No. 25 – Florida State … 270

No. 26 – Minnesota … 266

No. 27 – Stanford … 265

NFL First Round history for the Pac-12 … 

Colorado has had 24 first round draft picks in its history, 28th in the country, seventh in the Pac-12. The Buffs are just behind Cal (with 27), Washington  and Arizona State (with 26), and Stanford (with 25). Oregon State, with the fewest, celebrated just its sixth first round pick in 2014 with Brandin Cooks.

Washington State broke a long Pac-12 drought without a first round pick, dating back to 2003, when Deone Bucannon went to Arizona with the 27th pick in 2015. The longest drought without a first round pick now belongs to Arizona, which last had a first round pick in 2008.

The Pac-12 conference and the first round of the NFL draft (rank nationally, number of all-time first round picks, and each school’s most recent first round picks – Source: Winsipedia):

*Updated to include 2020 NFL Draft*

No. 2 – USC – 82 … Most recent: 2020 – Austin Jackson, OT, 18th pick, Miami Dolphins

No. 14t – UCLA – 36 … Most recent: 2018 – Josh Rosen, QB, 10th pick, Arizona; Kolton Miller, OT, Oakland

No. 22 – California – 27 … Most recent: 2016 – Jared Goff, QB, 1st pick, Los Angeles Rams

No. 23t – Washington – 26 … Most recent: 2019 – Kaleb McGary, OT, 31st pick, Atlanta Falcons

No. 23t – Arizona State – 26 … Most recent: 2020 – Brandon Aiyuk, WR, 25th pick, San Francisco 49ers

No. 25t – Stanford – 25 … Most recent: 2017 – Solomon Thomas, DT, 3rd pick, San Francisco 49ers; Christian McCaffrey, RB, 8th pick, Carolina Panthers

No. 28 – Colorado – 24 … Most recent: 2011 – Nate Solder, OT, 17th pick, New England; and Jimmy Smith, CB, 27th pick, Baltimore

No. 39 – Oregon – 19 … Most recent: 2020 – Justin Herbert, QB, 6th pick, Los Angeles Chargers

No. 47t – Washington State – 14 … Most recent: 2019 – Andre Dillard, OL, 22nd pick, Philadelphia

No. 55 – Arizona – 10 … Most recent: 2008 – Antoine Cason, CB, 27th pick, San Diego

No. 60t – Utah – 8 …  Most recent: 2017 – Garrett Bolles, OT, 20th pick, Denver

No. 66t – Oregon State – 6 … Most recent: 2014 – Brandin Cooks, WR, 20th pick, New Orleans

(And, in case you are wondering … No. 68t – Colorado State – 5 … Most recent: 1987 – Kelly Stouffer, QB, 6th pick, St. Louis)

13 Replies to “CU at the NFL Draft”

  1. Congrat’s Buffs and best luck going forward – drafted and undrafted but signed after.
    Laviska is a great Buff, I hope we hear his name for years to come followed by “..a Colorado Buffalo”
    The guy played hurt, and it is telling that his younger brother is aboard.
    Maybe Montez not being the guy, sees he has to learn and improve, and maybe get playing time, who knows but good luck to all.
    Great stories for all, especially the Jucos, that will be a recruiting plus…

  2. Viska was an amazing player for us while we had him. This WR class is extremely deep hence why he fell out of the first round. Coupled with the fact that he hasn’t been healthy for a whole season and he pulled up on his 40 time with no pro day is why he is falling hard right now. when he does get drafted, he will be a force when he sees the field. i do feel bad for him.

  3. Thats a lot of data. Different data. But the same kinda everywhere.

    Over the “Long Haul”

    Buffs are Buffs

    Note: 20 to 30 over the long haul
    Note: Wonder what those same stats looked like circa 2005. Where the rankings higher?

    1. Well, since the data is everywhere (and, by inference, easy to find), why don’t you do the leg work and find us the stats from 2005.

  4. I still maintain that Laviska can replicate what the 49’ers did with Deebo Samuels. Samuels in the Super Bowl was very impressive, but we’ve seen Viska at least be able to do all those things at the college level that Samuels does. Of course this all depends on if Viska can stay healthy and is in the right system.

    At times it seems to me that there are some NFL Offensive Coord. that are too stubborn to utilize the players that they have as they are totally into their own bullheaded ideas of what they are going to run. Agree or not there are some very smart and great coaches out there but as a group they can be as bull headed as…….someone that still thinks Nebraska is entitled to be a Natl. Power, which I might add it is no longer true. There, a little pro mixed in with college FB.

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