The Potential of Robert Foster

ORCHARD PARK, NY - NOVEMBER 25: Robert Foster #16 of the Buffalo Bills runs in a touchdown reception during the first quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars at New Era Field on November 25, 2018 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Brett Carlsen/Getty Images)

Robert Foster and his potential were one of the few bright spots on the Buffalo Bills offense last year. An undrafted free agent out of the University of Alabama, Foster signed to the Bills in May 2018. After bouncing back and forth between the active roster and practice squad he solidified himself as a starter down the stretch. As the 2019 season approaches, Foster looks to build upon his rookie year and establish himself as a number one receiver.

Potential for Robert Foster with Buffalo Bills

The end of the 2018 season put Robert Foster somewhat on the map. From Week 10 and on, Foster had 25 catches for 511 yards and three touchdowns. He finished the year with an average of 20 yards per reception and 12.2 yards per target. Not bad for an undrafted free agent. As a result, Foster saw himself selected in the first round of 2018 NFL re-drafts as more people saw his potential.

More Than Just Physical Tools

The physical tools have always been there for Robert Foster. He was a five-star recruit coming out of high school because of those tools. Measuring at 6’2″ and 196 pounds, and being able to run a 4.41 in the 40 yard dash is impressive. The Bills brought Foster on because of his raw potential and physical traits. However, as the season progressed, he became more than just physical tools.

Foster’s touchdown against the Miami Dolphins illustrates his growth. He sets up the corner, makes a move inside, and then takes a very good angle to the front corner of the end zone and makes his body open to Josh Allen for the throw. Some of the knocks on Foster coming out of college were his lack of instincts and poor route running. It may be a small sample size, but what Foster did on this touchdown shows an improvement in both of these areas. Coming into the 2019 season with a year of experience and another NFL off-season under his belt only adds to his overall game and ability.

Fit in the Offense

Robert Foster is very fast and works well downfield with his ability to track the ball in the air. Bills offensive coordinator Brian Daboll runs an offense predicated on play action passing and multiple looks while also spreading out the defense. Foster’s speed and breakaway ability meshes well with the system Daboll has. This shouldn’t come as a shock, as Daboll was the offensive coordinator at Alabama during Foster’s last year there. Daboll and Foster had a connection before the NFL and it’s very helpful for a young receiver to have a coach already familiar with your game.

The Bills added another burner in John Brown this off-season along with slot receiver Cole Beasley. Those two additions along with tight end Tyler Kroft and returning Bills receiver Zay Jones, give the Bills passing game some variety. The middle of the field has to be shown respect whenever Beasley is in play and that means more outside opportunity for Foster. Also, Brown’s speed means Foster isn’t the only deep threat. Add all that with an improved offensive line giving quarterback Josh Allen more time to throw, and the potential of Foster to be a major weapon increases.

Chemistry with Josh Allen

Josh Allen can throw the ball really far. Like, really far. When an offense has a guy that can throw that far it’s nice to have people than can run under those throws and catch them. Robert Foster can do that. Allen relied on Foster a lot towards the end of last season and the two developed rapport and chemistry. That rapport and chemistry will only get better as the two get another off-season together and some extra work as well. Foster headed to California in early March this year to get a jump start on furthering his relationship with Allen. A good receiver is bettered by a good quarterback and vice versa. Foster and Allen having each other, along with the worth ethic and effort to match, puts them both in positions to succeed.

Will Robert Foster Deliver His Potential?

Potential doesn’t mean anything if it goes undeveloped and doesn’t deliver production. The physical tools are there for Foster, and if last season is an indication he’s matching those tools with on-field progression. He’s a good fit in the Bills offense and is working with a coach that he already has a relationship with. He has a quarterback that trusts him and that he’s developed chemistry with. All signs right now are trending upward for Robert Foster and his potential to be a number one receiver in the NFL. It’s something that the Buffalo Bills need, and that Foster is on his way towards delivering.

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2 COMMENTS

  1. Finally, somebody else gets it! For some reason, after seeing the connection that Foster and Allen made in the second half of last season, a lot of “expert analysts” still see Robert Foster as an afterthought in the Bills’ passing game this season. The fact that Foster and Allen worked out together on their own time already this off-season should have been a big hint that Foster intends to play a much bigger role than that and Allen expects him to as well. Excellent pick-up by the author.

    Comparisons have been made between Josh Allen and Ben Roethlisberger. If Allen and Foster can pickup where they left off at the end of last season and each continues to develop as expected, it is very much a possibility that they could become as lethal an aerial connection as Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown were for Pittsburgh. The two young Bills both have the physical tools to develop into that kind of duo. I wouldn’t be surprised if they do. And I’m glad to see that someone in the media has recognized that Foster has a chance to become a true number one receiver if he continues to develop.

  2. […] Robert Foster had a solid 2018 and hopes are high for him and his potential this year. Unfortunately for him he suffered a toe injury in camp and hasn’t really seen the field at all this preseason. Despite his limited action so far in 2019, what we have seen combined with his play last year should be good enough for a roster spot. He has the makings of a real “diamond in the rough” kind of find for the Bills. […]

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