With junior Jacob Eason taking the snaps, it’s easy for Lake Stevens head football coach Tom Tri to be excited about his passing game, but at the first day of practice for the 2014 season on Wednesday, it wasn’t Eason he was raving about.
It was the guys he throws the ball to.
“I’ve been really impressed with our receiving crew,” Tri said. “They’ve come up a lot on their own time in the offseason (to work) with Jacob Eason just running routes, catching balls and just working on some fine details about concepts that we run. We’re as deep as receiver as we ever have been. There’s probably six guys at receiver for four spots that could all start.”
The receiving corps includes seniors Tevin Gray, Justin Brown, Damon Terry, Justin Brown, Josh Rasmussen, junior Riley Krenz and sophomore Hunter Eckstrom. Tri said it’s possible that five or more of the talented group of pass catchers could have 20 to 30 catches this season.
“I feel like we are really going to be able to spread the ball all over the field,” Tri said. “It’s going to be fun to know that we don’t have to hide behind one or two of our better receivers and try to move them around. We can just lineup and play fast and spread the ball to any skill position on the field.”
The Vikings depth at receiver and ability to spread the ball around the field should help them keep defenses on their heels throughout the season.
“It’s going to force defenses to have to cover the whole field, everything,” Tri said. “If teams are only going to leave four or five in the box because they’re so worried about having to defend the field, we’ve got four offensive lineman back and a couple of good (running) backs in the backfield that like to pound the ball between the tackles.”
Head Coach: Tom Tri (10th season)
Key Returners: Tevin Grey, Sr., WR/S; Justin Brown, Sr., WR/DB; Riley Krenz, Jr., TE/S; Kolby Jones, Sr., OL/LB; Jacob Eason, Jr., QB; Andrew Cook, Sr., T/DE
Coach’s Quote: “We’ve got seven returners on offense and seven returners on defense. I like the fact that we’ve got some experience coming back. It’s a great group of kids that have worked very hard in the offseason to try to put themselves in a position to be successful for this season. I think we have to work on coming together on a team and as 11 guys all individually doing their job. I’m very excited about the group of guys that we have.”