2. Quez Watkins
Early reports say A.J. Brown and DeVonta Smith have been stellar, which is to be expected. What’s catching some by surprise, however, is the emergence of Quez Watkins.
He’s made plays every day in practice, regularly competing for contested catches and coming down with them. Watkins has been so great that Jeff McLane of the Philadelphia Inquirer called him one of the “early stars” of training camp, and he’s even received some love from the national media as well.
Perhaps the biggest factor behind a strong start to the preseason is Watkins finally being back at full health. He played through a Grade 2 shoulder separation during the second half of last year, which undoubtedly played a role in the wideout taking a step back from his promising 2021 campaign.
Now, though, Watkins has the opportunity to seize the WR3 role behind Brown and Smith, and he appears to be doing just that. Offseason addition Olamide Zaccheaus has some provided some healthy competition throughout camp, but it sounds like Watkins is embracing the chance to prove what he can really do.
Philadelphia coming out of camp with a legitimate WR3 is one of the team’s most pressing needs. Though having pass-catching threats like Dallas Goedert and D’Andre Swift at non-wideout positions is massive, the team needs another wide receiver to at least earn the respect of opposing defenses.
If Watkins fully realizes his potential as a legit deep threat, Philly’s offense could hit new heights in 2023.