Ducks' receiving corps has depth but lacks experience
EUGENE -- Expect to see standout receiver and punt returner Bralon Addison return to the Oregon lineup this season, as long as rehabilitation continues going well on his blown-out right knee and the Ducks stay in the Pac-12 and national title hunt.
Yes, the junior Addison could miss the season and take his redshirt year, which he still possesses after playing his true freshman year, but he expects and wants to play.
"As a competitor, you have to expect to come back," says Addison, who suffered an anterior cruciate ligament tear in April practice. "It's supposed to be six to eight months recovery time. I'm trying to rehab as hard as I can. I want to play."
It'll depend on the Ducks; if Addison is ready to play and the Ducks are still playing relevant games, he is likely to play.
"If the doctors permit me to play with two or three games left, it'd be something I consider. I'm a competitor," says Addison, who says the Ducks want to play for the national title and so does he.
Meanwhile, senior Keanon Lowe leads an inexperienced receiver corps into the season without Addison. The likes of Chance Allen, Devon Allen, Darren Carrington, Dwayne Stanford and B.J. Kelley are going to be called upon; a couple wild cards could be basketball player-turned-receiver Johnathan Loyd and true freshman Jalen Brown.
Coach Mark Helfrich says the receiving corps has more depth than in recent years. But, clearly, some guys need to step up.
"We got guys who want to compete. Now we're putting even more talent out there," Addison says. "The coaches will have a headache trying to figure out who to get the ball to. That's the problem you want as a coach."
Addison had 61 receptions, 890 yards and seven TDs last season, and added 20 punt returns (14.1-yard average) and two memorable TDs. That's quite a double whammy for the Ducks the best receiver and punt returner out.
While sidelined, Addison, from Missouri City, Texas, plans to be "a motivator, a player-coach, a great teammate. I want this team to do well, whether I'm out there or not. ... I think this team has the potential, even without me, to do some great things. I don't think I'll be missed that much."