Travis Rudolph led Florida State in nearly every single receiving category last season. He had 916 receiving yards, 7 touchdowns, and averaged 15.53 yards per catch. The problem was he wasn't consistent enough. Of his 916 receiving yards, 52.1 percent came in three games. He had five games where he had less than 40 yards.
This year he's determined not to let that happen. Consistently is the main focus for him this offseason.
“Yeah, I set myself to the standard that if I have the opportunity to get 200 yards every game," Rudolph said. "It’s not about getting 200 yards but being more consistent.”
Head coach Jimbo Fisher saw that determination all through fourth quarter drills.
"...But Travis, man from Day One, he’s been a joy to watch compete every day," Fisher said. "It’s just that maturity level of ‘I understand what you’re pushing me too every day.’ It’s almost, not easy for him, but he’s hit that groove where he knows how to do it and how to take himself there mentally. That ability comes out. He did not have one bad guy in the offseason.”
Rudolph felt that he needed to prove something coming into the spring. Not just to others, but to himself as well.
“Definitely," Rudolph said. "I feel like I have something to prove for myself and for others.”
Fisher has been critical of the wide receivers so far this spring, but that doesn't extend to Rudolph.
"...Travis Rudolph has been really good," Fisher said. "Other than that there's not enough greatness out there, not enough consistency. There are some guys making plays. Travis is really emerging now but the rest of them have to continue to grow and get better."
Florida State safety Derwin James says that Rudolph is the toughest wide receiver on the team to cover.
"He's getting tougher," James said. "Every day he's getting better. I ain't told him yet that he's getting better. I ain't going to tell him, but he's stepping up to be that leader that we need at receiver."
Being a vocal leader doesn't come natural to Rudolph, which is one more thing he has in common with former Florida State wide receiver Rashad Greene. He's had to work on it, but he's stepping up to the plate in that aspect as well.
“I’m trying to me more of a vocal leader at times," Rudolph said. "In the film room, I’m helping guys out with understanding the concepts and making plays.”
Rudolph has stepped up on the field and off for the Seminoles this offseason. Now it's time to see who comes with him.