While the 2020 NFL Draft is still far off in the distance, players that will be drafted early are on the field now. Each week presents unique matchups for draft prospects and this week is no different. Here are five NFL Draft prospects to watch in college football week 2.
1. Grant Delpit, S, LSU
Delpit is the best safety in the class as things currently sit. After getting national recognition last season, he is poised for a great junior season this year. The Tigers already beat Georgia Southern pretty easily, but now Delpit will have to lead them against the Texas Longhorns.
In this game, Delpit and the defense will have to shut down Sam Ehlinger and a Texas offense that is high-powered. He will have to limit big plays and keep an eye on Texas wide receiver Collin Johnson, who is also an NFL Draft prospect. For LSU to win, the defense has to play great, because there is no guarantee that their offense is effective.
2. Isaiah Simmons, S, Clemson
It’s not often that two highly-touted safety NFL Draft prospects have big games on the same weekend, but that is true this weekend. Simmons is the leader on the Clemson defense and helped them defeat Georgia Tech in the opening week. Now the Tigers take on Texas A&M in a game they nearly lost last season.
Why is this matchup important for Simmons? Because of Kellen Mond’s dual-threat abilities, he’ll have a lot of responsibility. Simmons will have to prove that he can be good in coverage and that he can stop the run in this game, which will draw the eyes of NFL scouts. Clemson can win even without a good effort by Simmons, but it will be a lot easier for them if Simmons plays well.
3. Laviska Shenault, WR, Colorado
Shenault is one of the most talented receivers in the country, he just doesn’t get many opportunities to be in the spotlight. This week he’ll have a nationally-televised game against Nebraska to show the world what he can do. Expect the hype around him to start building more if he plays well in this game.
Nebraska’s defense was not good last season, but they do have some good corners in Lamar Jackson and Dicaprio Bootle. Shenault is more talented than both, but will need to prove it on Saturday to help the Buffaloes move the ball. Playing well in this game could help his draft stock rise and could help Colorado get the coveted win over a rival.
4. Chase Young, Edge, Ohio State
Young got his season off on the right foot, as he had 1.5 sacks against Florida Atlantic. As one of the top players in the class, a lot of eyes will be on him every week. This week will have an increase in difficulty for Young, but he is so talented that he still may get great production.
The Buckeyes are playing the Cincinnati Bearcats this weekend. Cincinnati proved to have a solid offensive line, an improving quarterback and a star running back in their win over UCLA. Young will be able to show proficiencies in pass-rushing and run-stopping in this game. It may not be the closest game, but Young will still get some good tape to put together.
5. Collin Johnson, WR, Texas
Like Delpit, Johnson will have a chance to prove himself in the LSU-Texas game. Johnson already made a highlight-reel catch in week 1 and finished the game with four catches for 59 yards and a touchdown against Louisiana Tech. He’ll have a lot more to prove against LSU this weekend.
Johnson could have gone to the NFL after last season, but decided to come back for another season. In this game against the Tigers, he’ll be going against a few secondary players that have NFL futures including Grant Delpit and Kristian Fulton. A good game could see Johnson’s stock rise in a very crowded wide receiver class.
*Johnson is questionable with a groin injury.