DeVante Parker has waited his turn, and now his chance is finally here.
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The 2015 season hasn't just been disappointing for the Miami Dolphins as a whole — it's been a letdown for rookie wide receiver DeVante Parker, too.
Parker, the 14th-overall pick in the draft back in May, has yet to make a start in the NFL and has recorded just eight catches for 129 yards and one touchdown in nine games. Expectations were high for Parker when he was taken in the first round, and they could finally be met in the coming weeks.
With Rishard Matthews dealing with fractured ribs, Parker is expected to get his first career start against the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday. Needless to say, he's excited about finally getting a chance to prove himself.
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“I’ve been looking forward to it the entire season, just waiting my turn,” Parker said via Andrew Abramson of the Palm Beach Post. “Everyone said be patient. The time is now. I’ve just got to step up and make plays.”
Coming off of a career-best game against the New York Jets in which he caught four passes for 80 yards and a touchdown, Parker says he's “a lot more confident now.” Additionally, he's getting acclimated with the Dolphins' offense, which will certainly help his production and effectiveness.
“I’m feeling very comfortable with the offense,” Parker said. “We installed some new plays today.”
The foot injury that kept Parker out for so long wasn't easy to overcome. Not only did it delay his start in the league, but it caused him to miss two games in November. To make matters worse, there were some people that called him “weak.”
“It was very tough — people calling you weak and stuff,” Parker said. “You have to be very patient.”
Patience has seemingly paid off for Parker and he'll look to prove doubters wrong this week against the Ravens.