Another young New England Patriots wide receiver was impressive in preseason action. But instead of the usual names, it was Quentin Sims. Yes, an undrafted rookie out of the University of Tennessee-Martin made quite the impression in last night’s preseason finale against the New York Giants.
This game was Sims’ first extended look in the preseason, and he did not look like an undrafted rookie making what essentially was his preseason debut. First, with about 12 minutes to go in the fourth quarter, Sims caught a pass in traffic and then broke away from his defender for what ended up being a 52-yard touchdown. The catch was on a slant route designed to simply move the chains, yet Sims showed some nice quickness to able to get the edge on the cornerback and take it to the house. Sims’ catch and run was similar to Demaryius Thomas‘ game-winning touchdown reception against the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 2012 AFC Wild Card Game. Ironically enough, Tim Tebow was the quarterback on both of these throws.
Sims made another good touchdown catch with less than 10 seconds left in the game. This time, he caught a fade route to the right, in which he was able to box out the defender. This reception took some physical strength, one that is often seen from bigger and stronger wide receivers like Sims. Receivers that can make these types of catches are best utilized as red-zone threats — something to keep in mind in the future.
Sims will most likely not make the final cut, but he should definitely be a consideration for the practice squad. At 6-foot-3, 202 pounds, Sims has the size and the strength to be a good red-zone threat. He also showed the ability to get yards after the catch, which is something that is crucial in the Patriots’ offense. If one of the current young wide receivers gets injured or is ineffective, Sims should be the first candidate to replace him.