From being kicked out of practice and twitter rants to being relegated to the second team offense, Austin Seferian-Jenkins is stepping up in a big, big way.
There’s always been potential for Austin Seferian-Jenkins. I mean, that’s what we always heard, right? “He’s got potential. He’s got the size. He’s got the natural athletic ability.” Yet, when it came down to it, ASJ has been disappointing in his first two seasons.
Earlier in training camp, Dirk Koetter announced that Cameron Brate was the starting tight end on the depth chart and ASJ was on the second team. Many people, present company included, believed that could be a legitimate outcome of camp. Now, Seferian-Jenkins appears to have taken this as a personal challenge that he is doing his best to overcome.
Even Jameis Winston was excited about ASJ’s recent emergence in practice, especially after snagging three touchdowns in the joint session with the Jags Thursday;
There’s no getting around it – the Buccaneers need Seferian-Jenkins to continue to step up the way he has lately. They need him to be hungry, to fight for the spot in the starting lineup. There is no question ASJ is the most athletic tight end on this team, but that only gets you so far. Apparently, the “wake up call” from Koetter – as Seferian-Jenkins called it – was enough to get him back into the mindset of wanting to compete, wanting to win.
Koetter spoke with the media after practice about Seferian-Jenkins’ improvement and standout day in practice today;
"“He got a lot of balls thrown his way,. Any of the skill guys, the receivers and tight ends, sometimes it’s luck of the draw; they just don’t get very many balls that day. Austin got a lot of balls thrown his way. We actually held Cam [Brate] out of some reps today just because we wanted to give some other guys a chance to get some catches, and Austin had a good day. Probably had his best day of camp.”"
Keep it up, Austin. Bucs fans are rooting for you to live up to those expectations, that potential. Not many would have guessed you’d be where you are now after what transpired in OTAs. Sky is the limit if you continue on the path you’re on.