Sammy Watkins is aware of he hasn’t lived as much as lofty expectations, however somewhat than run from that narrative, he embraces the possibility to alter it.
“I instructed the coaches, ‘My again is in opposition to the wall,'” the brand new Inexperienced Bay Packers receiver stated, by way of the workforce’s official web site. “My profession hasn’t been what I projected it to be.”
The Buffalo Payments drafted Watkins with the No. 4 general decide in 2014. In his first two years within the NFL, the wideout displayed dynamic capability. He netted 982 yards in 16 video games as a rookie and 1,047 yards and 9 TDs in 13 video games in his second season.
However accidents and inconsistency have marred the previous first-round decide as he is bounced across the NFL since. Watkins hasn’t performed a full season slate since his rookie marketing campaign and hasn’t earned 675 passing yards in any season since 2015.
“That is been the knock on my profession — to remain on the sector,” he stated. “Once I’m on the sector, I can ball, I can catch balls, I can rating and I am a dominant participant. However the secret’s staying on the sector.”
After his run with Buffalo ended following three seasons, he spent a 12 months with the L.A. Rams, three with the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs, and performed final season with the Baltimore Ravens earlier than becoming a member of Inexperienced Bay.
There have been some flashes of playmaking capability, together with a implausible playoff run with the Chiefs en path to a Tremendous Bowl victory. However Watkins hasn’t put it collectively constantly to turn out to be an every-week weapon. Final season in Baltimore, he received off to a superb begin, almost netting 100 yards in his first sport and compiling 292 yards on 18 catches by way of 5 weeks earlier than accidents struck.
The Packers, who used a second-round decide on Christian Watson, however did not add a big-name veteran after buying and selling Davante Adams and watching Marquez Valdes-Scantling check in Ok.C., are relying on Watkins turning again the clock.
“I do not suppose his sport has fallen off in any respect since we have been collectively in 2017,” coach Matt LaFleur stated of their time collectively in L.A. “A bit of bit has been perhaps a scarcity of alternative, however he’ll be a giant a part of our offense.”
With Aaron Rodgers preferring working with veterans somewhat than breaking in younger mustangs, Watkins has an opportunity to play a big function on a playoff workforce.
“I believe it is necessary to get guys who’ve rather a lot to play for, and I believe Sammy has the chance to proceed and journey down a brand new path in his profession,” Rodgers stated. “There’s undoubtedly going to be alternatives for him to make performs for us on this offense. I like the disposition, I actually benefit from the individual, and I believe he has all the things proper in entrance of him to have as productive a 12 months as he needs to.”
The 28-year-old Watkins is aware of his NFL window is closing if he does not reap the benefits of his alternative in Inexperienced Bay.
“To get that decision undoubtedly modified my entire outlook on coming into this season and the way I wish to play, and I simply can’t wait to get began,” he stated. “I am not completed but. I really feel like I received much more in my tank, much more soccer to be performed on the highest stage, and hopefully, I will be constant and keep on the sector.”