Playing time outlook: wide receiver

IT's position-by-position capsule look at the probable fall playing time rotation as well as a glimpse at possible freshman contributors for the Horns continues. Today's installment: wide receiver.

Wide receiver rotation pattern: Roy Williams. B.J. Johnson. Sloan Thomas. Tony Jeffery. Kyle Shanahan. Talk about an embarrassment of riches. And talk about a problem that every coach would like to have, finding enough playing time for each great receiver. Darryl Drake and Greg Davis showed us the blue print for handling the "problem" last fall, spreading the snaps around fairly generously to all of them. But, of course, the Big Three of Williams, Johnson and Thomas (or some combination of the three) will continue to be on the field for about three of every four game-on-the-line snaps just as they were last year. Jeffery and Shanahan substituted in for most of the remaining meaningful snaps last year, with then-true freshman Brian Carter seeing limited action, and a similar rotation should again apply this season, although Jeffery may be poised to step into a more prominent role after a coaching-staff-impressing spring performance. True freshman PT? Possible given the talent of the incoming receivers. Both Marquis Johnson and Robert Timmons fit the Roy/B.J./Sloan big play and (at 6-4, 200 and 6-2, 205, respectively) the big size mold and, with a strong fall, could step into a game-on-the-line substitute role by mid-season, if not sooner (although Johnson may still need recovery time from a knee injury). Burner Dustin Miksch also shouldn't be ruled out as a potential contributor, if for no other reason than his blazing speed (although his true freshman year size similarities to Jeffery, who took a year to bulk up to a reasonable playing strength and weight, point to a redshirt season).

Aug. 1 update: Marquis Johnson will not report to camp with the rest of the freshman class on Aug. 5. Johnson fell short of qualifying academically and will attend junior college.

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