There were certain times last year when Justin Hunter seemed like he was lacking confidence.
There were catches that should’ve been made, a lot of them in fact.
Hunter appeared to tense up when he could feel a hit coming, often resulting in a dropped pass.
Maybe the torn ACL he suffered against the Florida Gators was still in the back of his mind. Maybe he was protecting his future draft stock, who knows?
Regardless of what affected Hunter last season, he’ll have to put in the past.
He’s an NFL receiver now. A receiver that the Tennessee Titans placed a first round grade on and traded up in the draft to select him in the second round. Titans general manager Ruston Weber wasn’t shy about his feelings about Justin Hunter.
I think for us, he was on a different level for us grade-wise than the rest of the players on the board. “It was not even really close. With him sitting there, we saw it as a great opportunity for us to get a talented young receiver with a lot of upside.”
Justin Hunter doesn’t have a choice — he has to play with confidence now.
Hunter has been a Titan for just over a week and he already sounds like he’s re-found that confidence that seemed to escape him during his junior season at Tennessee.
Hunter: I can stretch the field, that’s my best asset. I’m gonna push the other players, just like they’re gonna push me, so we’re gonna get a lot out of it
If Hunter keeps that kind of attitude he’ll make a big impact in the NFL. Some analysts rated Hunter above both of his former teammates, Cordarrelle Patterson and Da’Rick Rogers. He’ll have every chance to exceed those expectations as a Tennessee Titan.
The Titans should have a rock-steady group of receivers in 2013. Especially if Kenny Britt can put his legal troubles in the rear view and fully recover from his torn ACL.
In addition to Britt the Titans also have 2012 first round pick Kendall Wright out of Baylor on the roster.
There will be plenty of opportunities for Justin Hunter in 2013, it’ll be up to him to take advantage.