It is no secret that the Kansas City Chiefs need better production out of their wide receivers in 2015. Last year, the team went without a single touchdown from the position, setting all kinds of terrible records. This season, the prospects are bright with Jeremy Maclin in tow, along with rookie Chris Conley and a pair of second-year men in De’Anthony Thomas and Albert Wilson.
However, lost in the shuffle is a full year with slot receiver Jason Avant. Avant came into Kansas City in 2014 after being released by the Carolina Panthers, joining the club for the stretch run. This offseason, general manager John Dorsey inked Avant to a one-year deal.
On Tuesday, Avant spoke to the media after practice and talked about a number of topics, including what it is like to be back with head coach Andy Reid after the duo spent eight years together.
"“It’s seamless because I know what he expects, but at the same time, you have to get used to what he thinks about routes – it was different from (former Eagles) Coach (Marty) Mornhinweg. Both of them are great, so you just have to learn his philosophy behind things. I can basically tell you what Marty would say, every word, in a meeting. But Coach, I’m still learning.”"
Avant also spoke about the chemistry he developing with quarterback Alex Smith. Last year, Avant caught 13 passes for 152 yards from Smith. If you play that out over 16 games, Avant would be close to 500 yards, making him a very valuable weapon in Reid’s offense.
"“Alex is always trying to get the ball out of his hands quicker, so you have to be on his time. That’s one of the biggest things, the timing is a lot different. Every quarterback is different, but Alex is one of those guys that wants it out at a certain time. If you have man-to-man and the route normally times out at 10-yards, he’s still going to throw it like it’s in the air, so you have to know that you can only get eight (yards) now. All of those little things, so I’d say that’s the biggest thing, which is a good thing.”"
Another name Chiefs’ fans are watching is Chris Conley, a third-round pick this year out of the University of Georgia. Conley is expected to compete with Wilson for the starting job opposite of Maclin. Avant had nice things to say about the youngster.
"“He can play, he can play some football. Real fast guy, he has to learn the little small things at this stage. Those are the big things from graduating to the next level. He has the potential to be really, really good.”"