The receivers on a high school football team really are the stars. I’m not sure why since the QB usually gets the most attention and the Runningbacks do most of the heavy lifting. It’s the prep receivers though that seem to have the most swagger on and off the field. What exactly is that? Well, it’s a highly skilled position. They have to be fast and strong. A little cagey never hurt either. They also have to have great hands and coordination. Maybe that’s why they get prep sport status and props. Combining speed, quickness, body control, and some serious hand eye coordination just doesn’t come in the same package that often. You can see it when they cruise around high school. The prep sport receiver just has swagger!
It’s hard to blame them. Some of the biggest plays on the high school football revolve around two hands and a ball sailing through the air. If football were a bag of fireworks, the receiver’s play would be the bottle rockets…the bright, shiny explosion that the kids (or fans) all oohhh and ahh about. There’s also a lot of pressure at that position. If the throw is on target and you drop it, there’s no one to blame but yourself. You ran the route. You got separation from the corner back and you were there when the ball arrived in a tight spiral. It goes right through your hands. That’s a horrible feeling as you run back to the huddle. There’s no way to deflect it and maybe that’s why we love the high school receiver position. They’re risk takers.
That brings us to the role of the passing game at the prep sport level in general. It’s risky…it’s bold and brazen. The run game is safer and generally, a slow slog down the field in a game of attrition against the D. The passing game is different. It’s high stakes. It’s a gamble. That play might turn into a 30 yard gain in the blink of an eye. It requires much more coordination between the QB and the receiver to make it all work out. It’s all or none. With a run play, you squeeze out 3-4 yards on a given down. You can live with that. String a few of those together and you have a 1st down. If the passing play doesn’t work, you get zilch. Nothing. You’ve lost a down and you have nothing to show for it. Now you have to make up ground (literally) and that added pressure figures into your execution unless you have ice in the veins. Receiving yards are high stakes and high gains when they work. That’s why we love em!
How do we account for the illustrious prep sport receiver position when it comes to Fantasy League at the high school level? This is one of the few positions where there’s really only one stat category that matters. It’s receiving yards and that’s it. Runningbacks can have rushing and received yardage whiel QB’s can have rushing/throwing yardage. The receiver is left with only receiving yardage but it still speaks to their talents. First, they have to catch the ball but a great deal of their total yardage is the result of their fancy footwork AFTER the ball is caught. Break a key tackle and you can see nothing but open field. A receiver’s favorite sight!