One of the biggest takeaways from Saints training camp this year was the emergence of wide receiver Marquez Callaway. The undrafted receiver out of the University of Tennessee came on to the scene last season when all pro Michael Thomas missed significant time due to an ankle injury. Also, free agent acquisition at the time, Emmanuel Sanders had tested positive for the coronavirus. In his debut against the Carolina Panthers, Callaway impressed Saints fans with his performance. He caught eight passes for 75 yards.
Unfortunately, Callaway’s dominance as a wide receiver in the Saints offense was short lived in 2020. He was in and out of the line up due to battling injuries throughout the season. Another factor to point out was that we did not see the other elements of Callaway’s game due to the limitations at quarterback. Drew Brees was under center at the time, but was clearly on the downside of his career.
With everything that has occurred at the receiver position so far, Callaway finds himself as one of the Saints most important players going into the 2021 season. After the performance against the Jacksonville Jaguars on Monday Night Football, Callaway is no longer a unknown name at the wide receiver position. He caught five passes for 105 yards and two touchdown scores.
His performance against the Jaguars defense went viral on social media. The performance also led to the decision to name Jameis Winston the Saints starting QB going forward. Callaway’s night against the Jaguars secondary has elevated his name as being a top breakout candidate from a fantasy football viewpoint. Callaway’s average draft position was significantly lower before the output against the Jaguars. From now on, that will no longer be the case. He may not be a top-five selection but will not be available past the first to the second round of a fantasy draft.
Projected Stat Total For Marquez Callaway
Receiving Yards: 1,215
Health Factor Will be Critical to Callaway and the Saints Success in 2021
Currently, the Saints wide receiver group is the thinnest unit within the team’s roster right now. Michael Thomas was recently placed on the PUP list to heal from the ankle surgery conducted in June entirely. Tre’Quan Smith’s status is still questionable because of an apparent injury that he suffered during training camp. No word has been given on a potential suspension for Deonte Harris. Harris was involved in a DUI incident that occurred in July before training camp started.
At any given time, league commissioner Roger Goodell can suspend Harris and put the Saints at a disadvantage at the most critical stretch of their schedule. That’s why Callaway must remain healthy for the majority of the season. The free agency pool at the moment does have the cream of the crop when it comes to productive wide receivers.
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