“Benjamin is extremely undersized and bases his entire game around his speed and quickness. He has a hard time getting off the line of scrimmage if not given a free release. He lacks the strength or size to recover if jammed by a more physical receiver. Benjamin has also struggled throughout his career to create any production in traffic. His preference is to be outside on the perimeter, away from contact, which could be his Achilles heel if moved into the slot.” – Travis Benjamin’s NFL Draft profile
Benjamin has done well for himself as a gadget player, but he is mainly a deep threat with burning speed, as his draft profile acknowledges. According to his 2017 receiving numbers on Next Gen Stats, Benjamin is given 7.3 yards of cushion by opposing defenders and has an average separation of 3.5 yards on routes, which is tied with speedsters like Tyreek Hill and Ted Ginn (for comparison, Allen’s is almost a full yard less at 2.7).
However, what the draft analysis mentions about him staying away from contact is spot on. At 5-foot-10 and 175 pounds, Benjamin isn’t exactly a big-bodied receiver and tends to shy away from getting hit.
And how can we not forget this:
Anthony Lynn said he's still confident in Travis Benjamin as Chargers punt returner: "He made a bad decision." pic.twitter.com/aLzRXuHdrc
— Jack Wang (@thejackwang) October 29, 2017
Thanks for reading along! It was fascinating to go back and see how some of the Chargers’ draft profiles foreshadowed future NFL problems each player still has, yet also showed that coaching and developing players can also begin to erase those college issues. Let me know if there’s any cool throwback draft nuggets that I missed. Go Bolts!