Entering year four in the green and white, wide receiver Robby Anderson is hungry for a breakout season.
After a head-turning 2017 that saw the 6'3", 190-pound WR record a career-high 63 receptions for 941 yards and seven touchdowns, Anderson wasn't quite satisfied with his 2018 performance in which he hauled in 50 catches for 752 yards and six TDs. With his blazing speed and soft hands, Anderson quickly became labeled a player who could take the top off the defense. But with head coach Adam Gase now in the picture, the Temple product is ready to showcase all areas of his skill set.
"I've been labeled a 'deep threat', but everybody who knows what I can do knows that's not the case," said Anderson back in April. "But he's (Gase) really going to make me a great player, he's going to bring greatness out of me, and he's going to let me do things I haven't really been able to do and take me to that next level. And I'm confident in that."
Anderson is confident that he will be able to expand the Jets' offensive abilities with the help of Gase, and the feeling is mutual.
"We want to think of ways to get him the ball, ways to create variety in his routes," Gase told reporters at the NFL Combine. "Instead of just doing one or two things, maybe we can open that up to five, six, seven things to where he's a threat on multiple levels —whether it be underneath, intermediate or down the field."
A Physical Machine
After missing the entire 2017 season due to a neck injury, Quincy Enunwa made a slow and steady bounce back in 2018. He started the year off hot, recording six receptions for 63 yards and a touchdown in the Jets' Week 1 rout of the Detroit Lions. But injuries again played a role in his season and he was limited to 11 games and finished with 38 receptions, 449 yards and one TD.
Staying healthy is going to be one of the biggest challenges for Enunwa and Gase wants his bruising wideout to pick his spots.
"It's a fine line with him. He is a physical player, he's a big man. When he gets to the secondary, he's a tough guy to bring down," said Gase of Enunwa. "We were on opposite teams last year and he carried about 12 guys on his back for about 10 yards. At some point, you'd like him to go down. When you know it's getting too many (hits), just going down and saving yourself for the next play because we're going to need him."
New Guy In The Slot
A new addition to the unit this spring was former Washington Redskins' slot receiver Jamison Crowder. An explosive target, Crowder can win in the middle of the field and outside the numbers.
"I pride myself on just going out there and being a ball player, regardless of where they want me to play — inside and out it doesn't matter," said Crowder. "I just try to learn as much as I can and continue to go out there and take it to the field and continue to grow as a player in this league, both mentally and physically. I take pride in everything honestly."
Although he missed seven games last year with an ankle injury, Crowder was a consistent threat his first three professional campaigns. In 2016-17, he averaged 67 receptions and 818 receiving yards and the 5'9", 177-pounder scored a career-high 7 touchdowns in '16.
"I think I'll be very valuable. Just looking at the film, he (Gase) had guys like Wes Welker, Jarvis Landry, those guys have really put up numbers in this league," Crowder said of his role. "I'm just trying to learn the system as best as I can and go out there and be the best that I can every day and bring that value that I can to the offense and to the team."
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Talent Down the Line
The depth at receiver includes both new faces and strong veteran experience. Josh Bellamy, who was first united with Adam Gase in Chicago when the latter was the offensive coordinator in 2015, has talked openly about Gase being a big reason he signed with the Jets. Much of Bellamy's experience comes on special teams, so he will also have responsibilities on Brant Boyer's units in 2019.
Sam Darnold's former USC teammate Deontay Burnett (10-143) flashed potential in 2018 and could play a larger role in the offense this season. And Ty Montgomery, who presents both a rushing and receiving threat, is a weapon who set career highs with the Packers in 2016 with 457 yards on the ground and 44 receptions.