Jared Abbrederis could become the first Wisconsin receiver to top 1,000 yards receiving since Brandon Williams did it in 2005.
Jared Abbrederis is inarguably one of the most important pieces on offense next season. Breaking in a new, potentially shaky quarterback in either Joel Stave or (more likely) Danny O'Brien, Abbrederis will function as the go-to chain mover and deep threat because, as of yet, there really isn't anyone else as proven. That's not to discredit what Jacob Pedersen, Montee Ball, James White, Jeff Duckworth or could do as pass catchers, but right now Abbrederis is poised to suck up a lot of targets until proven otherwise.
Adam Rittenberg tabbed Abbrederis as the Big Ten's best receiver in an admittedly down year for the conference. He makes the assertion tenuously, however, and for good reason. The quarterback position is uncertain, not to mention Abbrederis hasn't been a No. 1 yet in his career. Nick Toon was arguably the "go-to" receiver last season, though the numbers between the two were comparable. Still, Abbrederis faces the distinct possibility of playing without a second banana to draw attention away from coverage.
Rittenberg foresees big things if everything does fall into place, however.
If O'Brien isn't the answer, I don't expect Wisconsin to be throwing the ball as much as it did last season. If Wisconsin can establish a viable passing attack, expect Abbrederis to easily eclipse the 1,000-yard mark as the team's top option.
Wisconsin has not had a receiver go for 1,000-plus since Brandon Williams did it during the 2005 season. The conditions are ripe for Abbrederis to do it (supportive running game, unproven competition) as long as his quarterbacks are competent and he takes another step forward like he did from Year 1 to Year 2.
Links after the jump:
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