Nebraska Football

Nebraska Football: Coaches preaching versatility with Omar Manning, receivers

Photo: Justin Yan/Lincoln Journal-Star

Over the course of the first half of spring practices, Nebraska football has tried out wide receiver Omar Manning in the slot.

Manning certainly is an intriguing slot option. Measuring in at six-foot-four, 225 pounds, he would give Nebraska football size in the slot. However, the program has also worked him in at other areas as well.

Manning got a bit of playing time last season recording 26 catches for 380 yards and two touchdowns. Now, new offensive coordinator Mark Whipple is preaching versatility to all his receivers, including Manning

Moving Manning around to where he could play different spots as a receiver would certainly make the offense more dynamic. It sounds like this is something Nebraska football has been trying to work on for all of their receivers, not just Manning. In speaking to Brian Christopherson of 247 Sports earlier this week, Whipple noted that Manning size provides intrigue in terms of what he could at the position.

Explosive, playmaking ability is something that is an element of his game. If the receiver could bring that inside, that would just add another dynamic element to the Nebraska football offense. So far, Whipple likes what he has seen from the receiver in terms of his versatility. A receiver like Manning could go inside one week during practice, and on the outside the next week.

There’s a variety of reasons why giving Manning some reps in the slot is alluring to Whipple though. Besides Manning having good speed for his size in the coach’s eyes, “It has something to do with the run game and the blocking, but you’re getting him on safeties, you’re putting him on linebackers where he can bounce and get over the top of those guys. He’s been really impressive inside.”

It sounds like Manning is finding a home on the inside. When he first committed to Nebraska, I wouldn’t have suspected that he would be utilized in this way. Nevertheless, it’s about getting the best playmakers on the field. Nebraska football is certainly trying to do that here. It will be fascinating to see how this develops over the second half of spring ball.



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