Florham Park, N.J. - The New York Jets have had a change of mentality in the past two seasons. Heading into Week 13, the Jets sit at 3-8 on a three-game losing streak. This time last year, they were 6-5 just starting their five-game win streak. Not only for the team, but these two seasons have been a large change for wide receiver Quincy Enunwa. Last year, Enunwa had 46 targets and 22 catches for 315 yards and no touchdowns. When Eric Decker fell to injury this season, Enunwa emerged as the No. 2 receiver and has since cemented himself as one of the emerging receivers in the NFL.
In 11 games this season, Enunwa is second on the team in: targets (74), catches (43), and yards (643), however, he leads the Jets with four receiving touchdowns. "[Enunwa's] done an excellent job of taking what we're talking about on the practice field, in the meeting room, and executing on Sunday," said Brandon Marshall on his progress from last year to this year. "I'm really proud of him and excited to be on his team, and plus he make it easier for me."
Game after game this season, Enunwa has been one of the most reliable players for the Jets offense. When Marshall and Decker were being heavily covered and looked at against the Bengals and Bills, Enunwa emerged as a top target for Ryan Fitzpatrick, eventually opening the door for Marshall and Decker to have good days. Enunwa has had four or more catches in seven games this season. In the game against Baltimore where he finished with two catches and 73 yards, he had a 69 yard run for a touchdown, dodging defenders and showing that he can also run and catch. "I wanted to make sure people knew [Odell Beckham Jr.] wasn't the only explosive receiver in the 2014 NFL Draft class," Enunwa said after the game about the touchdown run.
Just this past week against New England, Enunwa had a career day: five catches for a career-high 109 yards and one crazy touchdown grab in which he jumped over Malcolm Butler in the corner of the end zone to reel in and landing his butt inbounds before going out of bounds. "[Enunwa's] a playmaker, I expect him to make that play and if he doesn't, then the next time we do it, I expect him to make it," said Fitzpatrick on the touchdown grab. "That's kind of who he's evolving into in our offense, he's done a nice job with it when his number has been called."
Averaging 15 yards per catch, Enunwa has grown since playing only in one game in his rookie season. He's grown since last season where he made big plays for the team towards the end of the stretch. Enunwa continues to grow and learn this season, emerging as a legit threat in the league. "I've shown myself what I know I'm capable of doing. Everybody else, I'm just still trying to prove," said Enunwa. "I came into this season hungry. Last year, I made so many mistakes that I knew I was better than. In practice, I would make plays. In the game, I just wasn't able to put it all together."
Enunwa can play the slot, he can play out wide, he can play the H-back, he can run, he can catch, he can block. Enunwa is becoming a staple in the Jets offense in which no one could've thought of or imagined him doing. When the opportunity was given to him, Enunwa has taken it and ran with it. Yes, Marshall has six more catches and 25 more yards than Enunwa, but he also has 26 more targets. Enunwa has stepped up and been consistent all throughout this season, and he'll continue to do it down the stretch.
"So this year, I've just tried to make sure that when I go out there, I just do exactly what I know I can do. I hope that I can keep that going for the rest of the year and the rest of my career."null