Dec 29, 2013; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans wide receiver Kendall Wright (13) during warm ups prior to the game against the Houston Texans at LP Field. Mandatory Credit: Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

Kendall Wright to receive more targets downfield?

Tennessee Titans wide receiver Kendall Wright is one of the most underrated players in the game, and it seems like the whopping 94 receptions he caught last season were far too quiet. Wright is one of the game’s premier slot receivers, and the Titans allowed him to free-wheel routes and establish an almost innate rapport with Ryan Fitzpatrick towards the end of the season. The former Baylor star caught 12 passes for 150 yards in a monstrous effort against the Arizona Cardinals, but the most impressive stat is the fact that he caught at least five receptions in 12 games last season.

The model of consistency, Wright is capable of so much more due to his intelligence as a route-runner. He’s only 5’10” and doesn’t have elite long speed, but he’s no slouch downfield either. In fact, ESPN NFL Nation’s Paul Kuharksy writes that Wright will be used vertically more often under the more creative Ken Whisenhunt and Jason Michael. Kuharsky believes that Wright’s mediocre, chain-moving 10.8 yards per reception will “jump”, so he’s worth watching even more closely next season.

With the Titans set to deploy Wright on the outside and on more deep routes next season, it’s fair to wonder just how many stats the 1,000-yard receiver could hook up. He’s consistently increased his knowledge of the position and his route tree during his career, and he looks ready to shred defenses in his third year after racking up over 90 catches last season with ruthless consistency. As Wright continues to impress, so will his numbers and versatility, and while there are questions about Jake Locker’s accuracy, there are no questions that Wright is a top safety valve for the make-or-break QB. Keeping up with the talk of Wright being used more often vertically, Locker undoubtedly has the arm to hook up with him on those occasions. Moreover, Wright’s runs downfield will help free up others, such as likely breakout TE Delanie Walker, if they don’t lead to catches on their own.

Tags: Kendall Wright Tennessee Titans

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