Big Highs, Big Lows For Austin Seferian-Jenkins

Young, talented players often are unpredictable, and second-year tight end Austin Seferian-Jenkins has been consistently inconsistent since arriving in Tampa. That was on display big time Sunday in New Orleans. On the Bucs opening drive, it was 3rd-and-5 with the Bucs on their 9 yard line with the SuperDome crowd at maximum volume.

Seferian-Jenkins ran a sharp route. Jameis Winston, America s Quarterback, looked right at him and threw. Seferian-Jenkins used every inch of his massive frame to haul in the first-down catch over the middle in between two defenders 21 yard gain.

But on the next drive, Seferian-Jenkins was called for a key hold on a third-down screen pass. Two drives later, Seferian made a key block on a Charles Sims first-down run. And three plays later, on 1st-and-10 from the Saints 44 yard line, the Bucs went play-action, the Saints bit perfectly, and wide open Seferian-Jenkins dropped an easy pass from Jameis on the 12 yard line.

No excuse whatsoever. On the very next snap, Seferian-Jenkins got flagged for a silly holding call, one that appeared to be out of frustration more than anything else. Later in the third quarter, Jameis threw a little high to Seferian-Jenkins open in the end zone.

Joe watched the replay a bunch of times, and it appears the tight end might have jumped a little early. The touch pass hit his hands but he couldn t squeeze it. Seferian-Jenkins finished the day with two catches for 29 yards.

Official records have him for three targets, but the stat geeks don t count the dropped bomb because the Bucs accepted a holding penalty away from the ball on that play. Last week, tight ends coach Jon Embree praised Seferian-Jenkins for playing a mental-error-free game against Tennessee. That love won t come into play this week.

All part of the growing pains of a young player, Joe believes.

If Seferian-Jenkins can stay healthy and confident, things he s struggled with previously, he should be just fine.