- Oct 24, 2013
- Reaction score
Even as the #3 receiver....he's got Evans (who's never had less than 1k yards in his eight year career) and Godwin (who would be going for his third straight 1k year if he had played more than 12 games in 2020) ahead of him. These are high volume guys that also happen to be two of the best in the league. Not to mention that when Gronk plays....he's one of Brady's favorite targets....and one of the best tight ends in the history of the league. Fact is that TJ was on the field for less than 25% of offensive snaps last year......and is still under 50% so far this year. He's starting to see some more time because of injuries ahead of him, so he'll have an opportunity to prove himself. But it's silly to point to his lack of production midway through his second year in the NFL as proof of anything.
And the comparison to Osborn just doesn't track. Behind Jefferson and Thielen....there is basically nothing. Not to mention that with Irv Smith out and Rudolph gone....TE isn't really a position that is demanding many targets. And that isn't to take anything away from what Osborn has contributed this year. He's played REALLY well. But it's an entirely different situation. If Osborn was on the Bucs....he'd also be around the fifth or sixth option when the entire roster is healthy.
We're almost to the end of his 2nd year and WR is one of the easier positions NFL players can make an impact immediately. I agree that he has been buried on the depth chart on a very deep team, but he has had more opportunities this year and hasn't taken advantage of them yet.
As for Osborn, Conklin's numbers are similar to Gronk's, although over 4 more games. Tampa Bay has also attempted to throw the ball 140 times more this year (prior to tonights game) which is significantly more than the Vikings run first offense.
The opportunities are there now for TJ and he has to make the most of them. The Bucs have little financially invested in him so he has to step up or he could easily be replaced by another 5th rounder in the future. I hope he has a great end to the season.