The 2020 college football season was a complete bust for everyone associated with LSU. Everyone except Terrace Marshall that is.
When Ja’Marr Chase opted out prior to the season starting the onus was on Marshall to step up and be the No. 1 receiver and Marshall did that in leaps and bounds. Working with three different quarterbacks, two of whom were true freshmen, and getting shadowed by opposing teams best cover corner, Marshall still dominated in the seven games he played in. Marshall showed he could be a team’s go-to option and at LSU’s Pro Day got to show off his enticing mix of size and speed.
Marshall needed a good 2020 season and to test well in front of pro scouts to work his way into the first round. Nine days from now he’ll have accomplished his mission.
Position: Wide Receiver
Height: 6’2” 5/8
Arm Length: 32 3/4
Hand Size: 9 1/2
Broad Jump: 10’5”
Vertical Jump: 39
40-yard Dash: 4.38
2020 Stats: 48 receptions, 731 yards, 10 touchdowns (seven games)
First thing that jumps out about Terrace Marshall is his size and speed. Standing at 6’2” with 32-inch long arms puts him roughly at the same size as Michael Thomas from the New Orleans Saints. Marshall, like Thomas, uses those long arms and impressive vertical jumping ability to create an absurd catch radius. If the ball is in Marshall’s zip code, he’s got a great chance to come away with it.
But how reliable are those hands? Marshall wasn’t just LSU’s leading receiver last season, he also had the most drops with seven. To his credit Marshall only dropped two passes from Joe Burrow in the 13 games he played during LSU’s 2019 championship run. Perhaps the seven drops can be chalked up to a lack of chemistry with him and TJ Finley and Max Johnson.
What can’t be denied is that Terrace Marshall makes a living catching touchdown passes. Marshall played in 32 career games at LSU and caught 106 passes, 23 resulted in a score. That’s about a touchdown every four catches. Had Marshall played the entire 2020 season he probably breaks Dwayne Bowe’s record school record for career touchdowns (26).
With the game favoring offense more and more Marshall will be a matchup nightmare for opposing defense. That 4.38 speed means he can take the top off the defense and even if a corner can get a hand on him, Marshall has the size and leaping ability to shake him off and go get a contested ball.
He scored that last touchdown despite being interfered with by eventual first round pick Noah Igbinoghene by the way.
In this day and age teams can never have enough playmakers out wide, and there’s plenty of teams picking at the backend of the first round (Tennessee, Baltimore, New Orleans, and Green Bay) who could stand to bolster its receiver room.
The one knock on Marshall is health. As a senior in high school he fractured his fibula and dislocated his ankle. While Marshall was able to play all 13 games in his freshman season at LSU, he was a shell of himself as he attempted to work his way back from that gruesome injury. As a sophomore he fractured his foot against Vanderbilt and missed three games.
But if Marshall is healthy, he’s the kind of receiver that will make any offense better. He showed in 2020 he can be an X-receiver, and in 2019 when he played alongside two other first round receivers he was just as vital to that historic offense’s success as Ja’Marr Chase and Justin Jefferson. He has the size teams covet and the speed defenses fear.
We spent all of last season saying it and it’s worth saying it again. Terrace Marshall: first round draft pick.