Boyd opened the season last year with a huge game against Lousiana State — in which he had 221 yards on 6 catches and a touchdown. In that game he set the North Carolina record for the longest play from scrimmage, scoring on a play from its own 3-yard line.
Boyd failed to keep up that pace for the rest of the season and only had 89 receiving yards in the other 12 games.
The new faces will be looking to Jones and the other experienced receivers for leadership this season, and Jones already has a game plan in place.
“We just got to come out and make big plays every day and just move the chains,” Jones said. “That’s our expectation. We know as receivers, we catch the balls. We have to do big things for our offense if we want to win games.”
As for helping the new quarterback adjust, Jones knows that his own performance on the field can go a long way in helping Renner settle in as the new facilitator of the North Carolina offense.
“Coming in, this is going to be Bryn’s first time at the collegiate level,” Jones said. “I know I have to come in and make a lot of big plays for Bryn to give him great confidence so he can come out every night and do his thing.”
Interim head coach Everett Withers knows that Jones’ experience will be key to the success of his new quarterback, and the new coach said he likes the attitude that Jones comes to play with.
Surrounding Renner with playmaking teammates on the field on Saturdays, Withers said, is crucial.
“Dwight’s a competitor. He’s one of those quiet guys that competes,” Withers said. “He’s a confident guy. He’s a talented guy. We’ve got to find ways to get the ball to Dwight.”
But the wide receivers aren’t the only inexperienced unit for the North Carolina squad.
With the departure of tight end Zach Pianalto, senior Christian Wilson and junior Nelson Hurst are the only tight ends with game experience.
Last season, Hurst and Wilson combined for only six catches.
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