2018 Raiders Draft Prospect Profile
Name: Allen Lazard
School: Iowa State
Weight: 228 pounds
For his size, you would expect Lazard to display a robotic motion when catching passes. However, he shows fluidity on passes in and away from his body. Standing 6-foot-5 greatly elongates his catch radius. As a result, Lazard appears constantly open. Whether he can continue this against better corners at the next level remains the question.
During the combine, Lazard’s draft status hinged on his 40. Either way, he would hear his name called. Yet, where depended on the stopwatch. To the surprise of many, Lazard clocked in at 4.55. For a 228-pound wideout, that time elevates his stock. If you look at his film, you will see where his burst begins. Granted, Lazard will not streak past corners. However, he gets up to speed on the strength of long, fluid strides. As a result, corners could camp on short routes.
For his size, Lazard saw a multitude of route combinations. The Cyclones used him on screens, weaving through traffic. Following that, he would snap off a post or deep out. With Lazard, the key is to allow him to use his enormous frame to his advantage. Under those circumstances, he excels over the middle and in the red zone. While his short routes need quicker steps and better footwork, Lazard handles the intermediate routes with ease.
As mentioned, Lazard’s frame operates as both a blessing and curse. A player his size is not expected to have the quicks and stop/start that much smaller wideouts possess. If you are Lazard’s size, tightening up the footwork would enhance the shorter routes.
If Jon Gruden’s past is any indication, receivers like Lazard check every box. Gruden prefer taller receivers that can body small corners and dominate downfield. In traffic, the red zone, or middle of the field, Lazard can help the Raiders. With Michael Crabtree expected to return and Amari Cooper geared to receive targets, Lazard can slowly climb the depth chart. Derek Carr usually favors Crabtree in the rezone. On the other hand, having a big receiver that can high point the ball over smaller defenders would help the Raiders. Additionally, Lazard could slide in as a Day 3 selection. Without a doubt, the Raiders will draft a receiver to enhance their struggling group.