The Los Angeles Rams are all in on winning a Super Bowl.
After finishing 11-5 last year, the team has made a number of high-profile signings this offseason. But one player who could have a huge impact on their 2018 fortunes joined the team via the 2017 NFL Draft. His name is Josh Reynolds.
As a senior receiver for the Texas A&M Aggies, Reynolds led the SEC in receiving yards and tied for the conference lead in touchdowns. That led the Rams to select him with the 117th overall pick. While Reynolds didn’t play much during his rookie season, he often wowed team personnel during practice.
“We were very impressed with Josh,” general manager Les Snead told TheRams.com. “There was (a) few things that he did in practice and even in games you’re like, ‘Wow, OK, that’s the Josh Reynolds that we saw go up and make catches against good players in college football.’ So he can wow you with some of those catches. Very excited about him.”
Head coach Sean McVay echoed those sentiments, saying “[Reynolds is] a guy that has all the traits and characteristics. He’s wired to separate. Great catch radius.”
With the departure of Sammy Watkins in free agency, a clear path to increased playing time has presented itself for Reynolds. One thing that makes him such a threat is his ability to accelerate past defensive backs—he recorded a 1.56 10-yard split at the 2017 NFL Combine, an impressive figure for a 6-foot-3 receiver. To help him build that awesome acceleration, Reynolds utilizes Sled-Resisted Sprints in his training.
Why: Reynolds performs this drill to increase his acceleration so he can blow by defensive backs and power through contact after the catch.
How: Attach a harness to your waist with a weighted sled on the other end. You want to use a weight that results in your sprint speed being 10% slower than it would be if you were running with no resistance. So if you typically cover 20 yards in 3 seconds, your optimal sled weight would be a load that sees you cover that same distance in about 3.3 seconds. For many people, this load will be about equal to 10% of their body weight—so 20 pounds for a 200-pound athlete. Once you find the appropriate load, set up in a sprinter’s stance. On go, accelerate forward and sprint through 20 yards.
Sets/Reps: 6-8 sprints, each covering a distance of 20 yards