With wide receivers DeSean Jackson (holdout) and Jeremy Maclin (illness) not practicing at training camp, receiver Jason Avant has been practicing with the first-team offense. Of course, Avant is used to running with the "ones" in the slot, but now he's getting more of a chance to prove himself on the outside.
"I think it's a blessing for me because I'm getting different angles on balls and learning," Avant said. "I already knew everything that they know as far as the positions but getting the reps from Mike (Vick) just in case of an emergency or different scenarios, coaches trust you more when they see you can complete plays at certain positions. Hopefully it will benefit us down the road."
Having worked with Vick since the 2009 season, Avant has a unique perspective on how far Vick has progressed in his development. In fact, the sixth-year wide receiver insists that Vick is primed to be even better in 2011 than he was in 2010, when he won the league's Comeback Player of the Year award.
"He's becoming a more complete player," Avant said. "Even though he didn't get the reps that he needed last year at the beginning of the season, because he didn't know that he was going to be the starter, and I just believe that him making adjustments for the line. I just believe that he's becoming a complete player now and I don't think the NFL has seen the best Michael Vick yet."
Avant was one of the stars of camp this morning, scoring two touchdowns, including a ridiculous one-handed touchdown grab against Nnamdi Asomugha in the red zone drills.
In his first five seasons, Avant has increased his reception total by at least nine in every season. As the 28-year old slot receiver becomes more and more comfortable with Vick, it's fair to expect yet another increase in production in 2011.