What the scouts say about the Bills' Day 3 picks. Is Khalil Shakir a steal?
Here is how the scouts view all of the Buffalo Bills' picks, including Boise State's do-it-all threat and the "Punt God."
(Note: With our heavy number of Bills fans who subscribe, we wanted to pass along the extended scouting reports on their picks. Bob’s full nine-part series, with full rankings, can be read at the links below.)
Here is information and comments made to me by scouts before the draft regarding the Buffalo Bills’ selections on Saturday, the third day of the NFL draft.
KHALIL SHAKIR, WR, Boise State
Hometown: Murrieta, Calif.
Fact/Stat: Fourth-year senior, started 24 of 43 games … Caught 208 passes for 2,878 yards (13.8-yard average) and 20 TDs but dropped 10 passes as a senior … Returned 23 punts for an 8.0 average and eight kickoffs for a 23.8 average.
AFC scout: “This is a really good player (but) he’s got 29-inch arms. Most people thought he’d run 4.55. He plays in the slot. He’s an A-plus competitor. They love him at the school, and they don’t like much of anything there. He’s just a steady eddie. You know exactly what you’re going to get. Then he runs 4.4. There’s a chance he goes second round but I think he’s the classic third-round No. 3 receiver. Quarterbacks will absolutely love him because you can count on him being where you want him to be. He knows how to play football.”
NFC scout: “Like him. Third round. He’s quick and sneaky fast. He’s dependable. He’s got really good hands. He’s a really good route runner.”
AFC scout: “He certainly does not play to his speed. Free agent. The 4.4 really shocked me. I didn’t see him making explosive plays. Problem with a guy like that, there’s so many that size.”
NFC scout: “I didn’t see much in this guy. He’s just average. Average speed, average skills, just average at everything. Just one of those dime-a-dozen kind of receivers. For me, he’s a late-round guy.”
AFC scout: “Loves the game. One of the best leaders on the team. Brings energy to the room … An athletic receiver with good suddenness in the open field. Is able to make defenders miss in space. Smooth, deliberate route runner who doesn’t waste much movement but can be slow in and out of his breaks against man coverage.”
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MATT ARAIZA, P, San Diego State
Hometown: San Diego.
Fact/Stat: Fourth-year junior … Left-footed … Kicked off for three years; also made 50 of 68 field goals (73.5%) … Punted five times in 2020 and then 79 in ’21. Career gross average was 51.1. His net was 44.2 in ’21.
NFL special-teams coordinator: “This guy is Corey Bojorquez. He’s got just phenomenal numbers. He’s got a great gross average but he’s pretty inconsistent. He’s certainly more of a line-drive guy. He didn’t get near the same hang time that (Jordan) Stout gets. But, he had a really good combine and a really good pro day. He’s never held because he kicked field goals. After watching him at pro day the holding is going to be a deal for him. He kicked off, but he’s more of a line-drive guy like he is as a punter. He can really get it deep down the field but he doesn’t get it up as well. I can’t shade him above Stout because I think Stout will be a better holder. You’d be taking a little risk. I think he’ll get drafted. Fifth or sixth round.”
NFL special-teams coordinator: “Very talented. Big-time leg. Raw, very raw. He’s got a big leg. He’ll probably be in a camp. I don’t know if he makes it right away.”
AFC scout: “He has the strongest leg. He’s a three-step guy. He outkicks his coverage a lot of the time.”
CHRISTIAN BENFORD, CB, Villanova
Height: 6-0 ½.
Hometown: Randallstown, Md.
Fact/Stat: Four-year starter … Intercepted 14 passes, including seven in 2021, and broke up 47 passes, including an FCS-leading 18 last season.
AFC scout: “Active and physical in run support. Willing to step up in the alley. Throws his body into contact. Saw some time at safety early in his career. Motivated for the NFL. Humble, no ego. An outside corner with exceptional size and adequate speed. More smooth than sudden in his movement. Not an instant accelerator; struggles to recover if he loses a step early. Best in press or zone coverage. Marginal burst and man cover skills.”
LUKE TENUTA, T, Virginia Tech
Hometown: Crozet, Va.
Fact/Stat: Fourth-year senior, three-year starter … Started 1 ½ seasons at right tackle opposite LT Christian Darrisaw before starting on the left side in 2021 … His father, Jon, has served as a defensive coordinator and position coach all over college football for about 40 years.
AFC scout: “I loved his father. He was defensive coordinator at Ohio State and Georgia Tech and NC State. He (Luke) is nothing.”
BAYLON SPECTOR, LB, Clemson
Hometown: Calhoun, Ga.
Fact/Stat: Fifth-year senior, two-year starter on the weak side but also played extensively in 2019 … Finished with 210 tackles (22 for loss), nine sacks and four forced fumbles … Weighed 244 in April 2021.
AFC scout: “He tries hard. He’s better than (James) Skalski there. He’s got some movement.”
AFC Scout: “Physical downhill player will crash into gaps and take on offensive linemen. Works hard to get there. Adequate burst and speed. Does all the extras. Loves the grind. Not flashy or loud. Trusted, lines everybody up. Athletic ability is solid in the box but he’ll be outmatched with some of the spatial aspects of the game.”