Patience paying off for Rick Wells in his sixth season

·2 min read

Name: Rick Wells

Number: 12

Position: Wide Receiver

Class: Redshirt Junior

Height: 6’1″

Weight: 200 lbs

Hometown: Jacksonville, Florida

High School: Raines

Twitter: @Rick_Wells3

2020 statistics:

REC

YDS

AVG

TD

LNG

12

120

10

0

20

Overview:

Wells was a three-star recruit from Raines High School in Jacksonville coming out of high school, and he was the first player to join the 2016 recruiting class under then-coach Jim McElwain. Wells held firm on his commitment, and he eventually signed with the Gators.

The early part of Wells’ college career was marred by off-the-field incidents. He was arrested for an airsoft gun incident in 2016 before the beginning of the season, and he eventually redshirted after not appearing in a game that year. Then, he missed the entirety of his redshirt freshman season in 2017 due to his involvement in the credit card fraud scandal.

Wells was internally disciplined in the summer of 2018 for another airsoft gun incident that involved five of his teammates, as well, and he only made one catch for 10 yards as a redshirt sophomore despite appearing in 10 games, mostly as a reserve receiver and on special teams.

It was largely the same story in 2019. Wells was suspended for the season opener for unknown reasons, and despite playing in nine games, he only boosted his catches from one to two for 27 yards.

The 2020 season, however, was when things finally started to go right for Wells. Though he was buried on the receiver depth chart by Kadarius Toney, Trevon Grimes and Jacob Copeland, he still had the best season of his career, by far. Appearing at receiver in 10 games, he totaled 120 yards on 12 catches.

Wells understandably took advantage of the extra year of eligibility allowed to players due to COVID-19, and he returned in 2021 for his sixth year in his biggest role yet.

2021: Through three games, he already has seven catches for 82 yards, and he caught the first touchdown of his college career in the season opener against Florida Atlantic. Though he’s still a backup, he’s one of Florida’s primary rotational receivers, and he should be in store for a career year during his final campaign in the orange and blue.

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