3 reasons the Carolina Panthers traded for Laviska Shenault Jr.
By Dean Jones
Carolina Panthers can use Laviska Shenault Jr. in multiple ways
Things didn’t go quite according to plan for Laviska Shenault Jr. with the Jacksonville Jaguars. In two seasons with the team, he brought in 67.6 percent of his targets for 1,219 receiving yards and five touchdowns, adding a further 132 yards on the ground before being moved on just before their final cuts.
While this wouldn’t indicate a prominent role on the Carolina Panthers given the weapons already on the roster, his skill set is something that might assist if he gets on board with Ben McAdoo’s complex scheme quickly.
Shenault was accused of failing to create separation effectively as an outside receiver. He wouldn’t be classed as explosive, but there is a physicality to his game that’s intrigued Carolina enough to take a closer look.
The Panthers might look to utilize Shenault as a hybrid receiver/running back in a similar way to how Deebo Samuel is deployed by the San Francisco 49ers. This is something the team had success with when Curtis Samuel went over 1,000 all-purpose yards before departing in 2021 free agency for the Washington Commanders.
Getting the football in Shenault’s hands is crucial. This might also give the Panthers a more dependable catching presence out of the backfield if Christian McCaffrey is forced to miss time at any stage.
It might not work out. But the Panthers didn’t pay over the odds to find out if Shenault can make a better go of things in a different environment.