“My Blast Comes Back”

Heading into 2023, two seasons away from the torn ACL he suffered in late 2021, Bucs wide receiver Chris Godwin is poised for a big season.

Many recipients would love to post the numbers he had last year, but it was a bit of a “down year” for someone of his talent. He set a career-high with 104 receptions for 1,023 yards with three touchdowns. But he wasn’t 100%. For players in a skill position, their recovery season usually comes after two years of recovery.

It was a long way ahead of him, and the numbers suggest he wasn’t as explosive as usual, averaging only 9.8 yards per reception and his first touchdown in Week 10. He only had three scores last year, the lowest since his rookie year.

Part of this can be attributed to the screen passes that were prominent in former offensive coordinator Byron Leftwich’s offense, but he also failed to get downfield and gather yards on reception.

Now he hopes to make all that a thing of the past, and both Godwin and the team are excited to see him back to his old self.

Bucs HC Bowles looking for Chris Godwin “to make plays”

With Godwin looking to improve and return to making more plays, head coach Todd Bowles is happy to see him once OTAs begin this week. With Mike Evans and Godwin topping the depth chart, they have been entrusted with being the key forwards and positively influencing the younger players.

Bucs WR Chris Godwin and HC Todd Bowles – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

“It’s great for him – he needs the work,” Bowles said this week. “The young lads need to see someone who did it, but they all learn a new offense so they do it at the same time. But his professionalism and a lot of guys around here, their professionalism helps.

Godwin is a consummate professional who comes in, keeps his head down and works. This mindset allowed him to return from his injury against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 1 of last season and make a bigger impact than expected.

With a new play-caller in town in Dave Canales, there has been discussion of putting him more on the outside, similar to what the Seahawks did on offense with DK Metcalf and Tyler Lockett. But Bowles just wants him to make plays wherever he is.

“Everyone knows he’s a great player, so when they see ’14’ there, attention will be focused on him – whether he’s in the perimeter of the field, in the slot or outside because he’s such a good footballer. is.” Bowles added. “He takes good care of his body. It is clear that he came back from the injury in great shape. I think they will continue to test him, but it is clear that attention is being paid to the good players. He keeps making plays, so we’re looking for him to keep making plays.”

Chris Godwin regains explosiveness and fearlessness

Was a receiver for the Bucs recently recorded as fearless of just about anything. Chris Godwin will also want to be fearless and explosive with the ball in his hands. As a Pro Bowler in 2019, he averaged 15.5 yards per reception and had over 1,300 receiving yards.

What’s encouraging is that Godwin put up those numbers without Tom Brady, as Jameis Winston was below center that season. He will have a new quarterback this season, whether that be Baker Mayfield or Kyle Trask. Mayfield already sees him there and already has takeaways from one of the new guns he has to work with.

Bucs Qb Baker Mayfield

Bucs QB Baker Mayfield – Photo by: USA Today

“He has that fearlessness to run down the middle and make these catches and go in and dig people out in the blocking game,” Mayfield said. “That’s the greatest part of this system, it puts people in positions that are the shield defense.”

Godwin has spent the last few months resting and recovering from a season-long test of his toughness and stamina and is feeling a noticeable difference from last year.

“It was a night and day difference between last year and this year,” said Godwin. “Last year I spent all that time alone in rehab. Those were very long days, and you look out the window. It’s like being a kid who got into trouble, and you watch all your friends playing outside and having fun. To be here now is a blessing. It was very hard work.

“After the season I took a much-needed rest. But I feel very good. I feel really good with where I am. It’s a fresh year [with] new opportunities for myself and all the boys around.

It’s a new year for the organization as a whole, as the team has added a lot of young talent through free agency, the draft and undrafted free-agent signings. This also applies to the receiver room, which has plenty of young drafts competing for roles. While they all want to develop, so does Godwin. He’s hungry to regain his shape, and he’s almost there.

“I think I’m very close to it. I feel like a lot of my explosion is coming back. I’m very comfortable with the things I’m doing. It feels really good to get the chance this off-season to working on my skill development, rather than just working on rehabilitating an injury.

Working with Dave Canales will benefit Chris Godwin

Not only does he take part in OTAs and return to the ‘lab’, but a new offensive chemist is on hand to devise moves to get the ball into the hands of the offensive playmakers. From what has been seen so far, Dave Canales is an off-season standout.

One can tell from his press conferences that he is dedicated to his craft and has a thorough answer to almost every question. He has a lot of energy and treats every player on the roster on the same level.

Bucs Oc Dave Canales Bucs Rookie Mini-Camp

Bucs OC Dave Canales – Photo by: Cliff Welch/PR

In the recent rookie mini-camp, he did numerous drills with the camp’s quarterbacks and assisted them as a coach. These are players who won’t make the roster let alone play meaningful snaps.

But Canales is someone who brings the juice and likes to teach. It won young box and veterans. Count Godwin as someone who enjoys his presence.

“I like him, I really do,” Godwin added. “I think the first thing that really comes to mind is that he is a very smart guy. You can tell he really likes the ball, but he really knows what he wants to do in terms of installing the offense and attacking defense. I think that really comes into its own in meetings; it is reflected in how he delivers the messages to boys in the conference room and on the field.

“I think the guys respond very well to that. He’s not much of a yeller, he doesn’t try to name boys and he doesn’t try to name boys. He is a teacher and he wants to communicate that effectively. It works so far. We’ve had a really good first day and the guys are flying around – the intensity is high. It kind of felt like training camp, so I think it’s going to be really cool to see this whole thing develop.

The Bucs’ $20 million receiver will benefit from having a new offensive coordinator who will try to place him in advantageous positions all over the field. Until the start of this season, he will spend every day preparing and collaborating with some new faces. In many ways, it’s a fresh start for a more explosive Chris Godwin.


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