It was less a question of if but rather when the St. Louis Rams would draft a receiver in the 2012 NFL Draft. After a season – seasons – in which Rams receivers struggled to separate themselves, both literally and metaphorically, from the pack, the onus was on the Rams front office to give quarterback Sam Bradford more weapons.
Many Rams fans clamored for Oklahoma State wide receiver Justin Blackmon, but the Rams seemed content to let Blackmon go. The Rams didn’t choose a receiver on the first day of the draft.
When the second round began, the Rams grabbed their guy, Appalachian State wide receiver Brian Quick. With an attractive combination of size – Quick is 6’3″, 220 pounds – and speed, the Rams envisioned Quick as their No. 1 wide receiver of the future.
The future, Rams fans are finding out, is still off in the distance for Quick. The 23-year old has struggled to adapt to the NFL, frequently finding himself on the sideline or used very sparingly in games. The Rams offense is much different from the one Quick was used to at Appalachian State, where the offense was simplified and he could rely on his physical ability to make plays.
That tough transition has shown on the stat sheet as well. Quick has only one game with more than one catch, and he’s gone without a catch in four of the games in which he’s been active. On the year, Quick has just eight receptions for 138 yards.
His struggles have frustrated many Rams fans, but Quick said he understands it’s all part of the process.
“In some ways,” Quick said of whether he gets frustrated by the learning curve. “Because I want to go out there and help. But sometimes you’ve just got to sit back and listen and watch and learn before you go out there and make that step. Because it would hurt us if I go out there and I’m not full speed doing what I need to do … so me sitting back, if I need to do that and (the coaches) feel like I need to do that then I’m all for it. And that’s when I become better, learning the game by watching.”
It hasn’t been all bad for Quick this year, though. His one reception in the Nov. 11 game against the San Francisco 49ers went for a 36-yard touchdown, his first as a professional. On that play, he showed the physical ability that excited – and still excites – Rams coaches and front office members.
Rams fans are hoping to see more of that from the rookie receiver in the coming weeks and years. Quick is hopeful he can give the people what they want.
“It’s getting better,” Quick said. “When new plays come in, I’m on it. I know what I’m doing – formations, where everybody lines up, where everybody’s supposed to be. That makes it much easier. Just go out there and play now. So hopefully you’ll see a lot of me – or a little bit more – and hopefully I’ll be out there making plays.”