After playing eleven games in his first NFL season, Jeremy Sprinkle has an opportunity to return to the form that made him one of the greatest tight ends in Arkansas football history.
In his four seasons with the Razorbacks, Sprinkle scored 11 touchdowns, a school record for tight ends. All the more impressive, he reached the all-time record while playing alongside current Los Angeles Chargers tight end Hunter Henry for three seasons.
Sprinkle is one of the largest skill position players on the offense, listed at 6-foot-5, 252 pounds. His size and strength give him the ability to protect the quarterback very well throughout the course of the game and he'll serve as a viable option for Alex Smith to find in the end zone with his towering size.
Despite just having two and a half weeks of practice together, Sprinkle says everything is falling into place.
“The way we’ve been communicating out there," Sprinkle said. "With a new quarterback coming in, I feel like he hasn’t lost his stride. He’s learned the offense really well and is out there leading us. Everybody is together out here just having fun and just getting ready.”
2018 Washington Redskins OTAs: Day 9
Here’s photos from the Washington Redskins OTAs practice that took place Wednesday, June 6, 2018, at the Inova Sports Performance Center at Redskins Park, presented by Loudoun Economic Development.
While there might not be as much glamour that comes with the blocking tight end, Sprinkle has an opportunity to develop from the guidance of Pro Bowlers Vernon Davis and Jordan Reed. Sprinkle has credited Davis for his leadership throughout the offseason, and expects Reed to help him push his career forward faster once he returns to the practice field after an injury-riddled 2017.
"Just watching film together in the tight end room and just doing things after practice," Sprinkle said. "Whether it’s catching balls or working on my footwork. It’s really been the little things to just develop my game.”
The Redskins' depth at the tight end position could push them into the upper echelon of NFL offenses this season and help them back to the playoffs for the first time since the 2015 season. Tight ends are cherished so highly around the league because they're found at premium right now (among the four 2017 Pro Bowl selections at tight end, three played for teams that reached the playoffs).
With just a few days remaining between OTAs and minicamp, Sprinkle wants the offense to remain at the high level at which it's been performing. It's the final impression that the Redskins' offense can provide for the coaching staff before training camp.
“I would say to just continue to the good communication and also just continuing to show the coaches that we all know the playbook and that we all know what we’re doing to click on all cylinders," Sprinkle said.