The Buffalo Bills made the bold move to trade up from the No. 9 pick to the fourth pick overall to draft former Clemson wide receiver Sammy Watkins and that bold move is already paying dividends at the team’s minicamp.
Watkins was lauded as a physical receiver on par with the likes of Julio Jones, Dez Bryant and A.J. Green during the draft process and his teammate and fellow wide receiver Robert Woods thinks those comparisons are on point as he called his newest teammate a special player during an interview with CBS Sports Radio.
“Yeah, I would say he’s special,” Woods said of Watkins. “Some of the catches he’s made, it’s just pure strength with his hands. He’s definitely (accelerating and) running by people and definitely making people miss.”
The 6-1, 205-pound Watkins had 101 receptions for 1,464 yards and 12 touchdowns in his junior season with the Tigers and the expectations are high that his college production will translate to early success with the Bills and help second-year quarterback E.J. Manuel reach his potential as last year’s first round pick.
“(I have) very high expectations (for him),” Woods said. “So far, he’s looking great. (He’s) catching everything, running past guys, looking strong. It’s just great to have another great receiver on the other side to make plays. E.J.’s going to put the ball out there. We just got to make plays for him.”
The presence of Watkins should help Woods in his second season out of USC as he will see more action out of the slot and move around the formation as teams try to key in on the rookie and prevent him from making the game-changing plays he made routine at Clemson.
Watkins and Woods could be a formidable duo for the Bills this year and for the foreseeable future as they will be integral parts to getting the club back to the postseason.