This offseason has seen plenty of change for the St. Louis Rams as a team, but arguably the position seeing the most upheaval is wide receiver. It’s been a long time since names like Isaac Bruce and Torry Holt were a part of the Greatest Show on Turf in the Edward Jones Dome, but the team appears poised to rekindle that spirit in the upcoming season. One player that figures to play a prominent role in that resurrection is last year’s second round draft choice Brian Quick.
Even though there were some positive takeaways from Quick’s 11 catch, 156 yard effort with two touchdowns a year ago the performance did not live up to the lofty NFL Draft status as the top selection in the second round. Inconsistency and difficulty adjusting to the speed of the pro game were the primary reasons for Quick’s lackluster statistics as a rookie, but now he figures to accelerate the learning curve in year two.
With the departures of both Danny Amendola and Brandon Gibson via free agency, quarterback Sam Bradford will be anxious to make new friends in the receiving corps. Rookie Chris Givens outperformed Quick as a fourth round selection a year ago, and he figures to be atop the depth chart at the position.
Givens’ is more of a deep threat option with his blazing speed, however, which leaves Quick as the primary underneath target along with now third-year wideout Austin Pettis. The Rams figure to run plenty of two tight end sets this season with free agent prize Jared Cook and incumbent tight end Lance Kendricks at the position. This will make the wide receiver position a bit of a toss-up on any given play.
Obviously eighth overall selection from this past April, Tavon Austin, will be in the mix for plenty of offensive touches. He figures to be a versatile weapon that lines up all over the field though, which should not impact Quick all that much.
Quick’s primary asset as a receiver is his big body providing his quarterback with a wide target at 6’3” 220lbs. He figures to be a real weapon in the red zone as one of his scores from a year ago so aptly illustrated.
Terrell Owens is a name that many shy away from using as far as player comparisons are concerned, but Quick has all of the same attributes. Both came into the league as small school projects (Quick Appalachian State, Owens Tennessee-Chattanooga) in many respects with outstanding physical tools and plenty of mental work to due on the practice field. The big difference is that Owens had a legend like Jerry Rice as a mentor with the San Francisco 49ers while Quick has little in the way of guidance on the roster around him.
It will be interesting to see how Quick can perform in training camp going up against two physical corners like Cortland Finnegan and Janoris Jenkins on a regular basis. His growth in year two figures to be largely determined by the progress he makes going up against these two coverage experts play after play in practice.