Taking a player at the very beginning of the second round in the NFL Draft is now essentially a late first round pick in the eyes of many. As a late first rounder, certain expectations are placed above said pick, and when that potential remains unrealized many begin to question the logic of the selection in the first place.
Right now with the St. Louis Rams there are plenty of question marks surrounding last year’s top of the second round choice in wide receiver Brian Quick. There was tons of optimism coming out of rookie mini-camp last year when Quick first arrived on the scene, and many coaches and players alike were raving about his potential impact with the team.
Even with that initial hype, it seems that Quick may still be stuck at the number four spot on the team’s depth chart as far as receivers are concerned. That is really worrisome news given the fact that he manned that spot a year ago when both Danny Amendola and Brandon Gibson, both of whom left via free agency this offseason, were still with the team.
Offensive coordinator Brian Schottenheimer told the St. Louis Post-Dispatch that Quick is “doing a lot better” and has “stepped up this year, but he remains stuck in the four receiver spot with the team. The main cause for Quick being stuck in neutral is Austin Pettis who has been the standout of the offseason thus far. Schotty went on to explain the logic behind this to the team’s website saying:
“Quite honestly, (Pettis) is probably having the best camp of all the skill players. He’s a tireless worker, very competitive, can play all the spots which helps and he’s having a tremendous spring.”
Last season Pettis really established a rapport with quarterback Sam Bradford down the stretch as he caught multiple passes in four of the team’s final five games including two five-reception games in Weeks 14 and 15. With just 8.7 yards per catch (YPC) however, Quick could overcome Pettis with his 14.2 YPC from a season ago. There’s something to be said for consistency, but Quick clearly has the edge in upside which may warrant more playing time as time moves along.
Coming from a small school can take a little while to adjust to the league, and Appalachian State certainly qualifies in Quick’s case. Receivers coach Ray Sherman actually compared Quick to another former small schooler turned All-Pro in Terrell Owens last offseason which speaks volumes to his potential. Once the light finally comes on for Quick the Rams will be in the position to really reap the benefits of his physical talents.