The Miami Dolphins expected big things out of rookie DeVante Parker when they selected the WR out of Louisville last season with the 14th overall pick in the 2015 NFL Draft. However, under the safe coaching style of former head coach Joe Philbin, Parker logged just 26 catches for 494 yards and three scores in his rookie campaign. Granted, the Dolphins approached Parker's rookie campaign with caution for good reason, seeing that Parker missed all of the preseason with a foot injury that nagged him his senior year of college.
However, once Parker was healthy, the Dolphins still failed to utilize his unique skill set under the guidance of interim head coach Dan Campbell.
That being said, I expect Parker to break out in his sophomore season under offensive mastermind and new head coach Adam Gase.
Parker really turned it on in the second half of the season, reeling in 22 of his 26 targets in the final 6 weeks of the season, and scoring all three of his touchdowns in that span. Parker showed his tremendous athletic ability with multiple high-point catches, simpling skying over defending cornerbacks and using his lanky 6-foot-3, 220 pound frame to make tough catches under pressure. This is something that Adam Gase will absolutely take into account when building next year's offense, an offense Gase has promised will be centered around the players instead of a certain scheme.
Look for DeVante Parker to become Ryan Tannehill's number one target in the red zone, and look for the Dolphins to take more deep shots down the field. Tannehill's most underrated improvement of season's past was his deep ball, as he often put the ball right on the money to Kenny Stills or Jarvis Landry. Parker will only make Tannehill's accuracy better, as he does not need a perfect throw to make a big play down the field.
I expect Parker to emerge as the top WR in the AFC East next season, especially since he will only improve his chemistry with both Ryan Tannehill and Adam Gase. Gase knows offense, and has been credited with helping turn around both Peyton Manning and Jay Cutler's careers when both had been previously written off (okay maybe Peyton wasn't completely written off).
Expect DeVante Parker to be the wide receiver fans were hoping for next season. While I think "Juice" will still lead the team and be Tannehill's number one go-to guy, I expect DeVante Parker to become a premiere number one receiver by season's end.