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Why Tyler Higbee is in line for a career season

A 2021 stat projection for the Rams right end

Arizona Cardinals v Los Angeles Rams Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images

There have been many videos surfacing from the Los Angeles Rams training camp highlighting deep passes to DeSean Jackson, toe-tappers from Robert Woods and Cooper Kupp on the sidelines, and no-look passes from Matthew Stafford to Darrell Henderson, but one of the most intriguing highlights is the connection that is forming between Stafford and his tight end Tyler Higbee.

After letting Gerald Everett hit free agency where he was subsequently picked up by the Seattle Seahawks, Higbee will undoubtedly be the number one at his position and see an uptick in attempts this year. Without anyone to truly cannibalize any playing time from Higbee, how many snaps, yards, and touchdowns can we expect this year?

Higbee had a breakout season in 2019 when he went for 734 yards, three touchdowns, and 69 receptions on 89 targets and began to make a name for himself on the football field. In 2020, his stats averaged out a bit, going for 521 yards, five touchdowns with 44 receptions on 60 targets. Unfortunately for Higbee, he did battle some injuries last year but appears to be healthy going into the 2021 season.

Fortunately for Higbee, his counterpart in Detroit enjoyed a breakout season last year when T.J. Hockenson put up 723 yards and six touchdowns as one of Stafford’s favorite targets. Hockenson was targeted 101 times, which was the second-most targets for any pass catcher on the Detroit Lions roster behind the 115 of Marvin Jones.

If Stafford shares similar success with Higbee as he did with Hockenson last year, Higbee will be celebrating his best season with the Rams yet. That connection has already been forming well in training camp thus far and coach Sean McVay has been taken notice.

(02:22) “Tyler is the guy and is going to continue to be an intricate part of our offense. We are looking forward to him being healthy... and be the great player that he is for us this year.”

What can we expect from Tyler Higbee in 2021? With the extra regular season game on the schedule, an upgrade at quarterback, and no Everett to steal attention away from him, I believe he will have career numbers this season.

2021 Projection: 900 Snaps, 950 receiving yards, seven touchdowns