Sound the air horn. If there is a breakout star waiting to explode on the Atlanta Falcons’ roster it’s Olamide Zaccheaus.
The second-year wide receiver out of the University of Virginia may be a little buried on the Falcons’ depth chart with the likes of Julio Jones, Calvin Ridley and Russell Gage taking the reps in practice and the headlines.
Zaccheaus has earned his way into the intriguing young players on the Falcons’ roster. He was undrafted out of UVA, but latched on to the Falcons’ practice squad to start 2019.
Zaccheaus was productive in Charlottesville where he played with Falcons’ third-string quarterback Kurt Benkert for two years.
Over his 50 college games, Zaccheaus caught 250 passes for 2,753 yards and 22 touchdowns. His senior season was by far his best. Zaccheaus caught 93 passes for 1,058 yards and nine touchdowns for the Cavaliers.
Injuries to Ridley and Jones as well as the trade of Mohamed Sanu opened up playing time late in the season.
Zaccheaus caught three passes for 115 yards and a touchdown. Zaccheaus also recovered a fumble for a score in the Falcons’ win over the San Francisco 49ers.
Initially, Zaccheaus could find himself in a similar role to the one he had to start the 2019 season. There hasn’t been any organized team activities for him to properly battle Gage and LaQuon Treadwell for the third wide receiver position.
With Sanu no longer on the roste,r it is possible that Zaccheaus breaks camp on the active roster as the Falcons’ fifth wide receiver.
As the season progresses, Zaccheaus could get more looks in game action. He will wow in practice. Zaccheaus has the juice that will make coaches turn their heads to watch him in practices. He isn’t a big wide receiver, which makes him an ideal candidate to work himself into a rotation in the slot.
Zaccheaus is only 23, and he has plenty or room to grow in the coming years.
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