Mathews being moved around

Marcus Mathews

For two years now tight end Marcus Mathews has been catching passes from the y-receiver or flexed tight end position. Over this past year he's added more muscle mass to his 6-foot-4-foot frame and has widened this skill sets to be a more complete tight end. So what is all this noise about him being moved to the outside receiver position?

If depth was worth its weight in gold, then BYU's tight end position would be Fort Knox. Simply put, there is a lot of valuable talent there, in so much that it's hard to figure out how Coach Doman could liquidate his tight end assets around the field in order to take advantage of it all.

One way would be to spread that talent around to a different position on the field, and so this past week Marcus Mathews was moved to the z-receiver position.

"Coach Doman had me over there learning the plays in case someone got hurt," said Mathews. "They just had me over there learning the position more in case someone got hurt in the game."

With Mathews being the most experienced tight end, the move could be an effort to spread the talent around to provide more depth at the z-receiver position. Ross Apo is the projected starter, followed by Dallin Cutler, who has struggled on and off over fall camp with injuries.

With the return of a more polished Kaneakua Friel, and Austin Holt and Richard Wilson now being back in the mix, Mathews is more than likely being looked at to provide greater depth at the z-receiver if needed.

"They also said I have the ability to play out there too. They said, ‘Who could fill that spot?' and the conclusion was that I could. They wanted me to move to the same spot as my brother Mitch out at the z-receiver position.

"I already kind of knew what everybody did anyways, but it was just to kind of to help me get a feel for how to run at the position. I mean, you can watch film and see other guys run it, but you have to actually do it to get a feel for it to know what it's really like."

So if the move was just a temporary one, when will Mathews be back practicing with the tight ends?

"I'm already back," he said. "They just had me there for a couple of days. I'm back with the tight ends and attending tight end meetings and when I come back on Monday I'll be with the tight ends the whole time.

"I was only out there [at the z-receiver position] for two or three days. I was just out there for a little bit to get the feel for it and get the plays down out there. I just need to get ready myself back and ready to go."

Mathews played the outside receiver position in high school, so the temporary move to the outside wasn't an unfamiliar experience to him.

"It's not as physical out there and it's more about quickness," Mathews said. "It's about how to get into spots quicker. It's just different reps and that's all it really is."

The biggest challenge for Mathews right now is getting healthy in time for Washington State.

"I'm fine but I just need to get my hamstring feeling better," he said. "I just got to get healthy and then we'll be good to go."

Mathews expects to be full participating next week.

"They cleared me to go on Monday and so I'll be back running with the tight ends getting ready," Mathews said. "Like I said, I just pulled my hamstring but I'll be good to go on Monday."

Not only has Mathews battled with a pulled hamstring, but he also just recovered from his third bout with strep throat.

"I lost around eight pounds but I've gained it all back already," Mathews said. "It was the third time I had it in two months, so it was super bad. You know, it always gets worse. I wasn't able to eat for a week but I've gained my weight back already."

He expects to be out on the field for the season opener on Thursday.

"When we play Washington State I'll be a tight end, but will know what to expect at the outside receiver position."

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