There was going to be a greater need for depth at wide receiver this year than the Sooners had the previous two seasons. That much was obvious because of the change in offense and the increasing demand on the passing game. Thus far, it’s shown to be significantly improved.
Through three games last year, Oklahoma had just five receivers catch at least one pass. Only three had caught more than five passes.
This year, seven different receivers have caught at least one pass and five have at least seven receptions. Seven different players have caught touchdown passes.
“There’s a ton of guys, a ton of playmakers, especially receivers out here,” Oklahoma receiver Mark Andrews said. “There’s a lot of guys who can go out there and play. If one guy gets tired, another guy can go in. That’s really important for this offense because we want to throw the ball.”
The system has had a little bit to do with the increased production, but it’s more than just that. Oklahoma has a wealth of depth at receiver, which has allowed plenty of pass catchers to cycle through in rotation.
Freshmen Dahu Green and AD Miller have each seen action early in games and walk-on Jarvis Baxter has become one of Oklahoma’s top possession receivers, having caught seven passes this season and the first touchdown of his career against Tulsa.
“We have depth, and we're distributing the ball pretty well right now, which is good to see,” Oklahoma quarterback Baker Mayfield said. “They can't key in on one guy. They tried to double up on (Sterling Shepard) a little bit this weekend. He still got the ball, but that opened up other guys like Mark (Andrews). It's good to see.”
Even with the growing depth, potential All-American receiver Sterling Shepard still has more receptions, the same number of touchdowns and just 50 fewer receiving yards.