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The Washington Football Team was staring down the threat of an 0-2 start, down 29-17, against the New York Giants with just 28 second left on the clock. It needed to move the sticks and get into field goal range, so who did Washington turn to for a play?
It wasn't Terry McLaurin, Dyami Brown or Logan Thomas. Instead, it was Adam Humphries who got just enough yardage to keep the drive alive. The seven-yard catch came on 3rd-and-5, or as McLaurin calls it, "3rd-and-Hump."
"When he comes in, he may not be the flashiest guy," McLaurin said. "He may not break away for an 80-yarder. But it just seems like the quarterbacks trust him, no matter who's in there."
McLaurin is right, of course. Humphries doesn't have as many yards as him or Thomas, but he has been just as effective. He's second on the team in receptions (9) and targets (10), most of which came during Washington's 30-29 victory over the Giants. They're reasons why Washington felt it necessary to have a veteran like Humphries on the roster.
It should come as no surprise that Humphries is becoming one of Washington's more reliable options when trying to keep the chains moving. In his final season with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Humphries was targeted 28 times on third down and converted 14 of them.
It seems like Washington is starting to use him more in that role. Humphries only received one target on third down against the Los Angeles Chargers. He got three against the Giants, although one technically didn't count because of a penalty, and while his catch on the offense's final drive was the only one he converted, it came at the right time.
"He's where he needs to be when he needs to be there and he makes the plays," McLaurin said. "I think every group of receivers throughout the league needs a guy like Adam Humphries who can come out of stacks, play in the slot, even outside if he had to, and make plays when you need it the most."
As McLaurin alluded, though, Humphries is more than just a third down threat. He grabbed all four of his targets on first down plays against the Giants and averaged about seven yards per catch. He's caught 90% of his targets through two games, which is his best stretch since the 2019 season.
Not only does Humphries catch rate lead Washington's wideouts, but it's also tied for the sixth-best percentage in the NFL. McLaurin knew Humphries would bring some veteran experience to Washington's wideout group, and now it's reaping the benefits of it.
"We've really leaned on that, especially in that two-minute drill [on Thursday] when he came down with some big passes," McLaurin said. "Hump can do a lot for us."
Ron Rivera made that point on Tuesday that part of what makes Washington's offense diverse is the amount of players touching the ball. When the unit spreads the ball around, he said, it can be pretty good. Humphries is part of that, and McLaurin expects to see more "3rd-and-Hump" plays soon.
"I think his role in this offense is only going to continue to grow."