In training camp, pass catchers catch plenty of passes from quarterbacks. They also catch them from a machine that has one purpose. To simulate throwing a pass.
But there’s a caveat when it comes to using the Jugs machine, in the opinion of Rams coach Sean McVay.
“If they’re working the Jugs, I would like to see them move because you don’t catch many routes stationary,” McVay told reporters on Saturday. “So we need to be working the top of the routes. So if you see them on the Jug, say ‘Hey, make sure we’re working the top of the route.’ We’re not just sitting there catching static routes. That’s not a very reflective drill of what happens in the games. You tell them that next time you see them on the Jug.”
That makes sense. Rarely if ever is a player standing still, waiting for a ball to arrive. There’s motion, or at least the anticipation of motion as soon as the ball gets there.
That’s the difference between working hard and working smart. Standing still and catching balls shot their way doesn’t make a guy any better at catching balls in games. Simulating the final move at the top of the route before focusing on making the catch does.