Scotty Miller doesn’t look the half. That’s likely why his solely Division I scholarship provide received right here from Bowling Inexperienced, and it’s most certainly why he didn’t get invited to the NFL Combine.
Since being drafted by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers throughout the 2019 NFL Draft, though, Miller has carried out the part of an NFL receiver merely improbable. He’s coming off his most interesting effectivity of the 2020 season, 5 catches for 83 yards and a touchdown. Basic, Miller has already topped his rookie-season numbers with 15 catches for 250 yards this season heading proper right into a Thursday Night time time Soccer meeting with the Chicago Bears. And a minimal of in biography and stature, Miller may remind a couple of of Tom Brady’s former slot-receiver buddies in New England, Wes Welker and Julian Edelman.
That is what it’s best to seek out out about Miller, one in all Brady’s new favorite targets.
1. An undersized sixth-round determine from Bowling Inexperienced
Miller, from Barrington (IL), put collectively three productive seasons at Bowling Inexperienced no matter his dimension. In accordance with 247Sports activities, Miller’s solely D-I scholarship provide received right here from the Falcons.
As a senior, Miller was listed at 5-11 nonetheless solely 166 kilos (and he measured as 5-9 at his Skilled Day). All through that 2018 season, Miller hauled in 71 catches for 1,148 yards and 9 touchdowns. That included a monster recreation throughout the season opener in direction of Oregon, when he had 13 catches for 166 yards and two scores in direction of a ranked Oregon employees. Miller’s season-high receiving yards received right here in direction of Western Michigan, when he piled up 206 yards.
Partially attributable to a small place in his freshman 12 months, Miller settled for ending third on BGSU’s all-time receiving yardage and reception leaderboards. The last word play of his school occupation was a 63-yard touchdown reception in direction of Buffalo. Miller was drafted by the Buccaneers with the 208th whole determine of the 2019 NFL Draft, a sixth-round alternative. The determine Miller was taken with received right here to Tampa Bay in a commerce that despatched DeSean Jackson once more to the Eagles.
2. Not solely a slot receiver
It’s easy to picture the smallest receiver on a soccer self-discipline lining up throughout the slot, working fast patterns with actual footwork to get open throughout the flat or over the middle. Miller does that, sometimes. Nevertheless he’s actually lined up double the snaps (98) on the floor as he has throughout the slot (49) thus far this season.
One choice to gauge the place Miller has been getting his targets is to utilize widespread depth of aim, a statistic that measures how far an tried transfer travels sooner than reaching its supposed receiver. Miller’s widespread depth of aim this season is 16.zero yards. In Mike Evans’ remaining two seasons, even with strong-armed Jameis Winston slinging him the ball, Evans’ widespread depth of aim was solely about 15.5.
Essentially, Miller could also be Brady’s favorite deep danger – generally, Brady used Edelman the an identical method in New England, lofting passes extreme for Edelman to sprint beneath and seize.
“I found the first day I threw with him that he nonetheless has it,” Miller knowledgeable the Buccaneers’ official website about Brady’s deep ball. “He throws merely as onerous as anyone I’ve ever thrown with, nonetheless. After which his deep ball is good as correctly.”
3. Miller can fly
At Bowling Inexperienced’s Skilled Day, Miller ran a 4.36-second 40-yard dash. He relayed the story to the Chicago Tribune of his title from the Buccaneers on draft day, when the voice on the other end of the highway knowledgeable Miller, “Now we have now a necessity for tempo.”
In that exact same story, Miller spoke about his disappointment in not being invited to the NFL Combine. His athletic testing truly would’ve caught way more teams’ eyes there. Tampa Bay is certainly happy that they solely wanted to spend a sixth-round determine on a participant who in distinction favorably in testing to Mecole Hardman, who the Kansas Metropolis Chiefs took throughout the second spherical.
4. Miller and Brady have extreme reward for each other
After Brady led a Tampa Bay comeback in Week 4, Miller summed it up succinctly: “How will you not take into account in him? He’s the most effective to ever do it.”
Brady has had good points to say about Miller relationship once more to teaching camp. And sooner than Tampa Bay’s season opener, Brady knowledgeable the Fox broadcast employees that whereas people might not know Miller however, they’d be the tip of the season. The Buccaneers’ Twitter account has gotten in on the Brady-Miller love, too.