Entering his rookie season, expectations for Terry McLaurin were not that high. But 58 receptions, 919 yards and seven touchdowns later, McLaurin came into 2020 as Washington's best offensive weapon.
While he'll be asked to do a lot, and face the best coverage from opponents, former Maryland Terrapin and NFL wide receiver Torrey Smith doesn't see a sophomore slump in store for McLaurin.
One main reason is that McLaurin will be the recipient of a lot of Dwayne Haskins' passes. Not only do the two have a chemistry that stems from their Ohio State days, but McLaurin is one of the few established targets the quarterback has to work with.
The No. 1 spot on the depth chart is McLaurin's, and Smith believes that will make his stats look rather impressive.
“You’re talking about a guy that’s gonna see well over 100 targets this year, so he will have his first 1,000-yard season," Smith said on Washington Football Kickoff Live."You can basically take that to the bank.”
The volume will help McLaurin, but it's his natural talent and skills that Smith believes has him primed to take another step in Year 2. His rookie campaign showed off his speed, route-running ability and strong hands.
Unlike some receivers who specialize in only one area and are used for certain routes, McLaurin can do it all for Washington. That only makes him more dangerous to opposing teams.
“With the ability to make tough catches, he’s a burner as well," Smith said. "Oftentimes when you see fast guys, they aren’t moved around a lot, right? He’s a weapon in the slot, he’s a weapon outside."
With all that working in McLaurin's favor, Smith isn't just expecting another productive year for the wide receiver, but a campaign that features McLaurin at the top of the position league-wide.
As the season eventually comes to an end, it wouldn't be shocking for Smith to see the young pass catcher suit up with the rest of the NFC's best.
"He’s gonna have a great year, don’t be surprised if he ends up in the Pro Bowl," Smith said.