Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Colts Impressed after Look at Wayne's World; Receiver Establishing Himself as Go-To Guy in Fourth Season with Team

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Colts Impressed after Look at Wayne's World; Receiver Establishing Himself as Go-To Guy in Fourth Season with Team

Article excerpt

Byline: BART HUBBUCH, The Times-Union

Reggie Wayne felt about as necessary as a fifth member of The Beatles after the Indianapolis Colts made him a first-round pick in 2001.

Wayne came to the Colts with the glittering distinction of being the all-time leading receiver in University of Miami history, but that didn't mean much when he arrived in Indianapolis.

The Colts already had one of the NFL's most prolific offensive trios ever in quarterback Peyton Manning, running back Edgerrin James and wide receiver Marvin Harrison, so Wayne felt a lot like a why-am-I-here afterthought.

Not anymore.

With the 4-1 Colts prepared to play host to the 4-2 Jaguars on Sunday in a pivotal AFC South matchup, Wayne has emerged as a force in the Indianapolis offense who is considered every bit as dangerous as his more-famous "Triplets'' teammates.

"Reggie is a tremendous receiver," Colts coach Tony Dungy said this week. "He has a lot of skills, and he's getting a chance to show them now.''

Wayne sometimes wondered if that chance would ever come after getting lost in the shuffle during a disappointing, injury-plagued rookie season where he caught just 27 passes and no touchdowns.

The 6-foot, 198-pound Wayne didn't do much in 2002, either, moving into the starting lineup for seven games only because of injuries to productive No. 2 wideout Qadry Ismail.

The Colts had reason to wonder if Wayne would ever be anything more than a third-down receiver until last season, but -- with a big assist from the Jaguars in the third game of the year -- Wayne has been busy transforming Indianapolis' opinion of him ever since.

Wayne had a career game against the Jaguars that day, catching 10 passes for 141 yards and two touchdowns in a 23-13 victory at the RCA Dome. There have been similarly explosive days after that.

"Obviously, the foundation was set when I got here," said Wayne, who has made an impressive comeback from a torn anterior cruciate ligament suffered as a sophomore at Miami. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.