FOXBORO, Mass. — New England Patriots fans should have recognized Bryan Tyms’ touchdown celebration on Friday night.
The young wide receiver was imitating another famous No. 84 — his idol Randy Moss. Tyms had the opportunity to play with Moss during the summer of 2012 while both were members of the San Francisco 49ers. Tyms said last week that he initially signed with the 49ers as an undrafted rookie out of Florida A&M in 2012 because Moss was on the team.
“That’s the dude, man. That’s who I look up to, as far as this game goes,” Tyms said Friday night at Gillette Stadium after the Patriots’ preseason win over the Philadelphia Eagles. “I’m trying to take advantage of the same stuff he did in his career. And hopefully, you know, I could possibly do that. I’m not saying I’m nowhere near him, because he is the GOAT. I’m trying, I’m trying my best.”
The 6-foot-3, 204-pound receiver’s celebration wasn’t the only thing reminiscent of Moss’ game on Friday night. Tyms’ ability to high-point quarterback Ryan Mallett’s 17-yard touchdown pass was something he picked up from the seven-time Pro Bowl selection.
“My short time with him — I’m a student of the game. Everything he did, I try to do. Of course, he does that,” Tyms said. “He just taught me, like, just focus.”
Moss also taught Tyms how to stack defenders. The goal is to not only beat a defender off the line, but also to get directly in their line of motion, which makes the receiver more difficult to cover.
“The simple release is a release, but you need to stack,” Tyms said. “If you don’t stack the DB, then you’re making their job harder for you.”
Moss’ lessons didn’t end when Tyms was released by the 49ers after training camp in 2012. Tyms spends time in his Patriots locker watching clips of Moss on YouTube, in hopes of bettering his game.
Tyms made a big play in the end zone — his second touchdown in as many weeks — but he didn’t have a perfect game. Tyms missed a beautifully thrown 35-yard pass from Mallett into the right corner of the end zone.
“Yeah, I dropped that one,” Tyms admitted.
“My job is to go get it. I let him down on that one. I owe him. I should take him out for some steak or something. I blew that.”
Tyms shouldn’t be so hard on himself. Director of player personnel Nick Caserio casually announced when the Patriots signed Tyms and another receiver — Cole Stanford — at the beginning of training camp. Stanford is gone, but Tyms is still hanging around, and he should still be a member of the Patriots after Aug. 31 cuts.
Tyms must serve a four-game suspension to begin the season after testing positive for Adderall, which is on the banned stimulants list, in the offseason. The Patriots might as well keep Tyms around, since a rash of injuries could strike the wide receiver position before October.