Undrafted WR Adeboyejo shows big-play ability
ANNAPOLIS — Quincy Adeboyejo put on a show in Annapolis as the Baltimore Ravens hosted an open practice at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.
The undrafted rookie wide receiver caught three deep passes Saturday night, including one from Ryan Mallett down the left sideline in which he beat veteran defensive back Lardarius Webb.
Adeboyejo has shined in his first training camp, particularly in the last four practices since he left the field on a cart Tuesday. Being carted off is never a good thing, but Adeboyejo knew he wasn’t seriously injured.
“I kind of just got a stinger in my leg and I couldn’t really put pressure on it,” he said Saturday, following yet another impressive practice. “I was walking, but the trainer just insisted I get carted off since it was such a far walk and I was limping so hard. It wasn’t too serious.”
Adeboyejo was projected to be a sixth or seventh round pick in the NFL Draft, but never heard his name called. The Ole Miss product had a number of teams interested in bringing him into training camp.
He chose to sign with the Ravens because of his relationship with wide receivers coach Bobby Engram, who coached Adeboyejo in a college football all-star game following his senior season.
“He coached me at the EastWest Shrine Game, so I already had a relationship with him,” Adeboyejo said of Engram. “He called me before the draft and said he was trying to get me here. I didn’t get drafted, so it just had to come down to me and my agent choosing which team. I think I had like 15 choices I could’ve went to. I just trusted in Bobby and I liked his personality and him as a coach.”
Adeboyejo possesses the size (6foot-3, 197 pounds) and speed to be a dangerous NFL wide receiver. He developed a reputation as a big-play threat in college. He ran the 40-yard dash in 4.42 seconds at the NFL Combine, the fifthfastest time amongst all receivers. He said his speed is his greatest strength.
“Guys are afraid of speed,” Adeboyejo said. “So when you’re running fast, it’s easy to get out of breaks when they think you’re going to beat them deep every play.”
A crowd of 10,321 at Navy caught a glimpse of his ability to make downfield catches Saturday night.
“Quincy has had a really good camp. What you saw tonight is what we have seen pretty much every day in training camp,” head coach John Harbaugh said. “To see him come out tonight under the lights with the crowd and play the way he did – not just him, but some other guys, too – it is good to see.”
Harbaugh said the next step is for Adeboyejo to perform Thursday night when the Ravens host Washington to kickoff their preseason schedule.
It’ll be a moment Adeboyejo has looked forward to his entire life.
“I can’t wait. Going up dreaming about playing in the NFL, it’s finally here,” he said. “I finally can go out there, compete, and be a Raven.”
Despite an impressive camp, Adeboyejo faces long odds of making the final 53-man roster. Baltimore will likely keep six wide receivers, four of which are locks to make the team. Jeremy Maclin, Mike Wallace and Breshad Perriman occupy the top three spots at the position. Chris Moore, a fifth-round draft pick the previous year, has a nearly-guaranteed spot on the team. That leave Adeboyejo in competition with players like Chris Matthews, Michael Campanaro, Keenan Reynods, Tim White, Griff Whalen and Kenny Bell for the remaining two – possibly three, or even one – slots.
Adeboyejo says he’s just trying to continue to make plays as he enjoys the process. His biggest adjustment as he does so is mastering the complex playbook.
“I’ve just been in the playbook, trying to learn the offense in-andout. Once you get the offense, it just makes playing a lot easier. I’m just trying to stack good day after good day,” Adeboyejo said. “I was always in a spread using hand signals from the sideline, even in high school. Huddling up and the way they call plays is a lot different than the way I was used to, so that’s probably the biggest change I’ve had to face.”
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The North East 10-11 all-stars (left to right): Evan England, Luke Keefer, Blake Stevens, Ryan James, Kyle Trott, Mason Newton, Colby Barlok, Will Bretigan, Jonathan Herrera, Landon Knaub and Brooks Jacobsen.