Heaps: Why moving WR DK Metcalf around is beneficial for Seahawks
If the Seahawks had a breakout star in 2019, most people would say it was second-round pick DK Metcalf.
Metcalf, a wide receiver from Ole Miss, was a polarizing prospect heading into last year’s draft because he looked the part of a superstar with his large, chiseled frame and his ability to run the 40-yard dash in 4.33 seconds, but he also had some injury history in college and was criticized for his limited route-running. Seen by some as a first-round talent and pick, Metcalf slid all the way to the end of the second round, where the Seahawks traded up to select him.
He quickly proved that was a smart move on Seattle’s part, as he emerges as quarterback Russell Wilson’s No. 2 target behind veteran receiver Tyler Lockett and Metcalf ended the season with 900 yards and seven touchdowns while appearing in all 16 games. He wasn’t done there, either, as in his first career playoff game, he set an NFL rookie playoff record with 160 yards and a touchdown against the Eagles.
So what is the next step for the now second-year receiver? For starters, Metcalf may be adding more to his plate in the playbook.
“My role won’t be just an ‘X’ receiver,” he told Q13 Fox News’ Aaron Levine. “They can move me around whenever possible.”
The “X” receiver typically lines up on the line of scrimmage and flexed out wide away from the formation. Last season, Metcalf was a fixture in this spot for the Seahawks.
Former NFL quarterback Jake Heaps of 710 ESPN Seattle’s Tom, Jake and Stacy was pumped up after hearing that Metcalf may be moved around the offense.
“Give me some more of that, please, because this is what I’ve been preaching about DK Metcalf since last year,” he said. “DK as a young rookie showed that he can handle the role that was given to him in terms of being an ‘X’ receiver, handling the six routes that they asked him to master and boy did he do that in a hurry. And it quickly led to them eventually midway through the year starting to expand his route tree.”
Heaps has worked out with Metcalf and Wilson during this offseason in his work as Wilson’s personal quarterback coach and has seen firsthand that Metcalf can be a special player in the NFL.
“I believe DK Metcalf through the work he’s put in this offseason through his workman-like mentality has now grown to a place where A, physically he’s a very gifted player and B, mentally I think he’s ready to take the next step, which is to become a true elite receiver in this league,” Heaps said. “And what do true elite receivers in this league do? They get moved around all over the field and are placed in different spots so they become mismatch nightmares. They become problems for defenses and defensive coordinators because they don’t know where they’re going to line up on the field, which then leaves them in a very difficult spot to try and match coverage to limit that player.”
Listen to the entire second hour of Wednesday’s Tom, Jake and Stacy at this link or in the player below.