Pros and cons of Buffalo Bills taking Florida football’s Justin Shorter in 2023 NFL Draft

Kevin Brockway
The Gainesville Sun

Florida Gators wide receiver Justin Shorter was selected in the fifth round by the Buffalo Bills on Saturday in the NFL Draft.

Shorter was the 150th overall player picked. He played 9 of 13 games for the Gators in 2022. ranking second in receiving yardage with 29 catches for 577 yards and 2 TDs.

Here's what Shorter brings to the NFL:

Staying close to home:Pros and cons of the Jaguars taking Florida football’s Ventrell Miller in 2023 NFL Draft

Bills bound:Pros and cons of Buffalo Bills taking Florida football’s O'Cyrus Torrence in 2023 NFL Draft

Bears bound:Pros and cons of Chicago Bears taking Florida football’s Gervon Dexter Sr. in 2023 NFL Draft

The positives

A former USA Today high school All-American and New Jerey high school player of the year, Shorter began his career at Penn State before transferring to Florida. He finished his career with the Gators with 95 catches for 1,395 yards and 8 TDs.

Last season, teamed with strong-armed Anthony Richardson, Shorter displayed his speed and ability to get behind the defense, catching touchdown passes of 75 yards against Eastern Washington and 51 yards against LSU.

Shorter ran a 4.55 in the 40-yard dash at the NFL combine and at 6-foot-4, 229 pounds is a big and strong enough target to endure contact and break tackles after the catch.

The concerns

At times, Shorter is slow getting off the snap, which makes him less effective on short routes and more effective on intermediate and deep routes. Last season, Shorter missed three of Florida's final four regular season games with a hamstring injury after appearing in 23 straight games during his sophomore and junior seasons.

Shorter was unable to convert in the red zone last season, catching just 2 touchdown passes, and was inconsistent high-pointing lob passes in the end zone.

Final thoughts

Shorter has the physical tools to be an effective NFL wide receiver but needs to continue to work on his quickness and ability to break press coverage.