The Dolphins continued adding to the offense on Friday with the addition of Trent Sherfield. Here are five things to know about Miami's newest wide receiver.
1. More Speed
Sherfield went undrafted to Arizona in 2018 out of Vanderbilt. His Pro Day workout caught the attention of NFL scouts when he clocked a 4.45 40-yard dash, leaped 125 inches on the broad jump and put up 19 bench press reps of 225 pounds. His workout produced an 8.89 Relative Athletic Score, finishing in the 87th percentile among pre-draft wide receiver workouts since 1987.
2. The Stats
Going from UDFA to a four-year NFL career, Sherfield spent three seasons in Arizona before his one-year stint with the 49ers in 2021. In total, he's played 975 snaps on offense (61 games, five starts) with 37 receptions for 427 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Sherfield pairs speed with a knack for pulling down contested catches. On 19 career opportunities in traffic, Pro Football Focus credits Miami's new wide receiver with nine catches, an impressive 47.4 percent rate.
3. Earning Trust
One of those touchdowns came on opening day 2021 with San Francisco, a product of an opportunity well-earned.
Sherfield turned heads at 49ers camp last summer with his consistent work ethic and production throughout camp. An injury to 49ers' first-round pick Brandon Aiyuk created an opportunity for Sherfield to get some work on offense and he made the most of it.
"Sherfield has done an outstanding job and he deserves to have the opportunities that he has," said new Dolphins Head Coach Mike McDaniel at Niners camp, where he served as offensive coordinator, last summer.
"We've been practicing for the last month," 49ers Head Coach Kyle Shanahan said at the time. "(Sherfield is) a guy has been there every day, and I think the quarterback has a lot of confidence in him."
Jimmy Garappolo confirmed Shanahan's statement.
"He's been out there sharp every day. He's on his stuff," Garoppolo said. "And as a quarterback, that's the main thing you could ask for from a receiver. You've got to be on his stuff and in the spot you expect him to be."
4. The Dirty Work
Specials teams and downfield blocking are two critical elements of the sport that rarely absorb the spotlight. Sherfield, however, has shined bright in both facets throughout his four-year career. Pro Football Focus assigned Sherfield run-blocking grades of 80.1, 71.1 and 81.0 the last three seasons (70-plus is above average and 80-plus is very good).
On special teams, Sherfield logged 741 snaps over four years and produced 28 total tackles. He finished inside the top 50 in special teams tackles each of the last three seasons.
For the undrafted free agent, accumulating good impressions through hard work can go a long way. Find any success story about an undrafted player and you'll likely find a story about how they earned every ounce of their role in the National Football League.
"(Sherfield) had such a good reputation for how he plays on special teams," Shanahan said.
"You always respect the player from afar, but he's a guy that's in here at 5:30 every morning, that's in the steam room, taking care of his body," 49ers Special Teams Coordinator Richard Hightower said. "He's in the sauna. He does extra. He's a pro's pro. He's bringing guys along. There is no secret. Now being around the guy, he fits right into our culture and we're really happy to have him."
5. Two-Thirds of the Three Amigos Back Together
In Arizona, Sherfield formed a special bond with teammates Christian Kirk and Chase Edmonds. From Cardswire.com:
Running back Chase Edmonds and receivers Christian Kirk and Trent Sherfield are pretty much inseparable. Edmonds refers to them as the "three amigos."
Coming soon to the Drive Time Podcast with Travis Wingfield, Trent Sherfield will join the show to talk about his relationship with Edmonds, Head Coach Mike McDaniel and Wide Receivers Coach Wes Welker and much more! Subscribe wherever you get your podcasts.
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