Projected Starters: Steve Ishmael, Brisly Estime, Ervin Philips
Biggest Question Mark: Will someone take the pressure off of Steve Ishmael? Ishmael enters the season as the clearcut number one receiver. But in order to keep him from receiving consistent double teams and blanket coverages, the Orange need other threats to emerge. Whether that’s Brisly Estime on the outside or Ervin Philips in the slot as an h-back, this will be critical to the success of their passing attack.
Most Important Player: Brisly Estime – yes Ishmael is the top receiving option, but there isn’t anything to worry about there. Ishmael is expected to be productive, and there is no reason to doubt that he will be. Estime can give Syracuse another option and has the type of elite speed they just do not have anywhere else on the roster. His ability to make plays will give Syracuse a dynamic and versatile passing game.
Outlook for 2015 Season: This is the first time in the last several seasons that Syracuse enters the year with some quality depth at the receiver position. If everything goes as planned, they could have four or five legitimate receiving threats. Steve Ishmael will be the top option and receive the most targets. Ervin Philips as an h-back will someone to watch as well. Expect him to be prominently featured in Tim Lester’s new offense.
What will constitute a successful season for this position group: A successful season for the receivers would be answering the biggest question noted above. Finding some consistency outside of Ishmael while having Philips take that next step into become a consistent playmaker means a good year for the Orange wide receivers.