Justin Marshall, WR, Buffalo | NFL Draft Scouting Report

It's a true toss-up as to whether Buffalo wide receiver Justin Marshall is selected in the 2023 NFL Draft. Does his scouting report lean one way or the other?

Our rookie scouting reports combine film and analytics to provide the best possible predictions for player performance. With the 2023 NFL Draft just a couple of weeks away, let’s take a look at the scouting report for Buffalo WR Justin Marshall.

Justin Marshall NFL Draft Profile

  • Position: Wide Receiver
  • School: Buffalo
  • Year: Redshirt Senior

Marshall was a three-star recruit out of Newton High School in Covington, Georgia. He received offers from well over a dozen Power Five schools. After numerous visits and interviews with various schools, Marshall chose to play college football at Louisville.

After redshirting his entire freshman season, Marshall saw his first game action in 2019. Yet, it was an uneventful start to Marshall’s career. He recorded stats in just five different games, totaling 135 yards on six receptions. Things didn’t get better in a COVID-impacted 2020, as Marshall caught just seven passes for 87 yards.

By 2021, Marshall was in his fourth year at Louisville and had yet to do anything. While he wound up having his best year yet — 23 catches for 322 yards and his only touchdown — it wasn’t going to cut it at Louisville.

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Marshall’s production with the Cardinals wasn’t going to get him drafted or likely even signed as a UDFA. As a result, he chose to return to school for another year, opting to transfer to Buffalo.

While Buffalo obviously presented a significant step down in competition, it did allow Marshall a chance to showcase his skills more. He played in 13 games, catching 64 passes for 837 yards and nine touchdowns.

Overall, across two programs, Marshall appeared in 33 games, finishing his college career with 100 receptions for 1,381 yards and 10 touchdowns.

Tony Pauline’s Scouting Report for Justin Marshall

Strengths: Louisville transfer coming off a sensational senior season. Tracks the pass in the air, extends his hands, and snatches the ball away from his frame. Possesses soft, strong hands and natural pass-catching skills. Uses his frame to shield away defenders, gets vertical, and exposes himself to the big hit.

Nicely times receptions, displays terrific eye/hand coordination, and makes the difficult over-the-shoulder reception. Uses his hands to separate from defenders, sells routes, and possesses short-area quickness. Keeps the play in bounds and is tough to bring down after the catch.

Weaknesses: Must improve his route-running footwork and isn’t quick in or out of breaks. Lacks deep speed and isn’t a vertical threat.

Overall: Marshall is a big-bodied receiver with long arms and reliable hands. He displayed the ability to take over games last season, and while he plays to one speed, Marshall has the potential to be a real good fifth or even fourth receiver on Sundays.

Justin Marshall Pro Day Measurements and Results

  • Height: 6’2″ (unofficial)
  • Weight: 210 pounds (unofficial)
  • Arm Size: N/A
  • Hand Size: N/A
  • Bench Press: N/A
  • 40-Yard Dash: 4.41

Buffalo WR Justin Marshall Current Draft Projection

On Tony Pauline’s Big Board, Marshall ranked 268th overall and is projected to possibly get drafted in Round 7. With a 3.27 grade, he’s Pauline’s WR37 in the class.

The best wide receiver prospects are early declares. After that, we want four-year players that were highly productive. Marshall checks neither box.

Marshall not only spent five years at college, but he didn’t break out until his fifth season, and only after transferring out of a Power Five school to a step down in competition. And he wasn’t overly dominant to boot.

Marshall didn’t earn a Combine invite, but from what information we were able to gather from Buffalo’s Pro Day, he did run around a 4.40 40 time. That’s good for Marshall’s size and gives NFL scouts something to cling to when considering taking a shot on him.

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With that said, college production is the most predictive indicator of NFL success. Marshall spent a full four years at Louisville without producing anything even remotely close to NFL-caliber numbers. His lone year at Buffalo was very good, but it wasn’t indicative of a guy who will go on to have NFL success.

Special-teams experience goes a long way toward earning a spot on an NFL roster, but it doesn’t appear Marshall has that. He’ll have to rely purely on his athletic abilities and the improvement of his receiving skills.

It’s always a challenge for Day 3 picks. It’s even more of a challenge for UDFAs. Pauline has Marshall on the border of getting drafted. But whether he’s a seventh-round pick or a UDFA, Marshall is unlikely to make an NFL roster.

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