Texas A&M Football: Projections for the Aggies' Freshman Wide Receivers in 2013
The Texas A&M Football team enters the 2013 season with significant losses at the wide receiver position from the 2012 team. The Ags signed one of the top receiving classes in the nation and those freshmen are going to be expected to play immediately in 2013.
On national signing day every recruit is a star. The world is full of optimism as college coaches boast about the potential in their latest signing day haul.
The reality of the situation is that if half of the players who sign with a program end up playing a meaningful role in that program, then it was a successful signing class. No one knows how good a class really is until at least three years after signing day.
The Ags signed six wide receivers in the 2013 class. Do not be surprised if four of five of them see significant playing time in the fall.
How these freshmen adjust to the academic and athletic demands of college will go a long way towards determining what kind of success they will experience. The good news for the Aggies is that all six incoming receivers appear physically ready to play in the Southeastern Conference.
This is a projection of how each freshman wide receiver will perform in 2013.
Ricky Seals-Jones was the jewel of the Ags' 2013 recruiting class. He was listed as an "athlete" by most services but was recruited to A&M to play wide receiver.
The 6'6", 230-pound incoming freshman is a matchup nightmare for any defense. Seals-Jones has outstanding speed for his size, and will simply be able to outrun most defensive backs. The ones who are fleet enough to keep up with him will then have the task of trying to out-muscle and out-reach a wide receiver with NFL tight-end size.
Seals-Jones played quarterback, safety, defensive end and wide receiver in high school. During an injury shortened senior season, he only played quarterback and safety.
Because of his relative lack of experience at wide receiver, Seals-Jones will not be as polished as one would like to start the season. Aggie fans will need to exercise some patience as Seals-Jones adjusts to his new position.
Expect Seals-Jones to start slowly but get stronger as the season goes on. Seals-Jones should be especially effective in the red zone where his size will be a huge asset.
In 2013, Seals-Jones should catch 25 passes for 400 yards and four touchdowns.
JaQuay Williams is a 4-star wide receiver recruit who enrolled early at A&M in January. He spent the fall of 2012 at the Fork Union Military Academy in Virginia while trying to become academically eligible.
Williams originally signed with Auburn out of high school but was not able to qualify, so he went to a prep school. At 6'3", 215-pounds, Williams has great size for a wide receiver.
He has tremendous body control and possesses the ability to high-point the ball in the air. Williams struggled during the spring to try to process so much information at once in the Ags fast-paced offense.
Williams play will improve as his understanding of his role in the offense increases. He will play in 2013 and will most likely be effective during the second half of the season.
Aggie fans should expect Williams to catch around 15 passes for 170 yards and one touchdown.
Sebastian Larue is a 5'11", 195-pound wide receiver from Santa Monica, California. The Ags beat out USC and a host of other PAC-12 schools for Larue's signature in February.
Larue is a very polished wide receiver who will play in the slot in 2013. He will compete for the starting spot that opened up with the graduation of Kenric McNeal.
Since the California public school year runs into June, Larue was not able to make it to Aggieland for the first summer session. He did make it for the second summer session and is currently enrolled in class and working out with the rest of his teammates.
Aggie fans should expect Larue to also get a long look at punt returner. He will play on special teams and in the slot in 2013.
Look for Larue to haul in 18 passes for 250 yards and two touchdowns. He will return 10 punts for 110 yards.
Jeremy Tabuyo is one of the more interesting recruits to come to A&M in recent memory. It is not often that you will recruit a player to Texas all the way from Honululu, HI.
Tabuyo is a 5'11", 175-pound receiver who was sold on the opportunity to excel in the Ags' spread offense. He will compete for playing time in the slot and at punt returner.
Tabuyo missed his entire junior season of high school with a knee injury. A&M head coach Kevin Sumlin liked what he had seen from Tabuyo as a sophomore and offered a scholarship anyways.
As a senior Tabuyo caught 49 passes for 710 yards and 11 touchdowns. He has run the 100 in 10.8 seconds and has the kind of speed needed to compete in the SEC.
It is a big jump to go from playing against competition in Hawaii to the top collegiate athletes in the country. It will be surprising to see how Tabuyo adjusts.
Expect Tabuyo to catch 21 passes for 230 yards and one touchdown. He will return seven punts for 50 yards.
Laquvionte Gonzalez may be the most underrated member of the Aggies 2013 recruiting class, which is saying something considering that he is rated as a 4-star recruit. Gonzalez has been one of the most electric play-makers in the state of Texas for the past three years.
He helped lead Cedar Hill (TX) High School all the way to the 5A state title game as a senior. Gonzalez was a threat to score every time he touched the ball in high school.
Because of injuries, Gonzalez switched from his natural position of wide receiver to running back as a senior. This position switch coupled with his early commitment to A&M, led to a lot of people overlooking Gonzalez when it came to ranking recruits in 2013.
He is an impact player, and possesses the type of speed and elusiveness that will translate immediately to the college game. Although he is only 5'10", 165-pounds, Gonzalez has surprising strength and breaks tackles with ease.
As a junior, Gonzalez cleared 6'8" in the high jump. He will help the Ags immediately in the slot and the return game. Do not be surprised if the Aggies offensive coaches devise special ways to get the ball into Gonzalez's hands.
Gonzalez will catch 30 passes for 360 yards with four touchdowns in 2013. He will add 10 carries for 95 yards and a touchdown on the ground. In the return game, Gonzalez will have four punt returns for 110 yards and one touchdown.
Kyrion Parker has the misfortune of arriving in Aggieland in a large receiver class as an outside receiver, when the biggest need is in the slot. The 6'2", 195-pound athlete from Manvel, TX projects to be a great receiver in college.
He has great hands and good body control. Physically he is already strong enough to play in the SEC. The question is whether he will be able to find playing time at one of the two outside spots.
Right now he is going to have to fight it out with Seals-Jones, Williams and redshirt freshman Edward Pope for playing time. Asking Parker to beat out those three maybe asking a little much at this point.
Expect Parker to redshirt during the 2013 season.