2015 NFL Draft Profile: CB Josh Shaw, USC


Evaluating the draft stock of Josh Shaw gets a bit complicated for a few different reasons. First we have to address his off the field concerns and his injury concerns. Then we have to address whether he should be a cornerback or a free safety at the next level. There is a lot to discuss, so let’s get right down to it.

Josh Shaw may be a familiar name, even if you aren’t a USC Trojan fan. He was the USC player who before the 2014 season injured his ankles and then lied about how it happened. He claimed that he was being heroic, that he saved someone’s life, jumping into a swimming pool off a balcony. He later admitted that he was not being a hero, and that he lied about the reason he jumped off the balcony. Long story short, without all the details, it was a mess.

Shaw’s character concerns aside, he is a flashy athlete. He ran a very speedy 4.44 second 40 yard dash at the combine. Along with speed he has great vertical ability that can make him a playmaker in the secondary. He only played in 3 games in 2014 due to his injured ankles. He did impress at the Senior Bowl though.

The question scouts have is whether or not he will be a cornerback or a free safety in the NFL. He has elite speed but he is not a physical man to man corner. He is an undisciplined cornerback and he can get beat deep despite his stellar measurable athleticism. He would not be the first cornerback to become a great free safety. Rod Woodson is a great example of that.

GMENHQ Big Board Ranking: 54th Overall Prospect


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  • Great speed
  • Good vertical ability
  • Ball skills
  • Good at knocking the ball loose from receivers
  • Jumps on routes, not afraid to take chances
  • Good recovery speed


  • Not a shutdown man-to-man cornerback
  • Not very physical
  • Can get beat deep because of inconsistent technique
  • Character concerns

Shaw is an elite athlete with plenty of room for growth and development. His athletic ability is unquestionable. A team could be compelled to take a chance on Shaw, because of his talents.

Next: 2015 NFL Draft Profile: RB Jay Ajayi, Boise State