Farmington's Max Montoya emerging as key red zone target, particularly on corner routes
FARMINGTON — Max Montoya showcased his value toward the end of last season as a key red zone target, particularly on corner routes and various jump-ball plays.
The Farmington wide receiver created mismatches against smaller defensive backs in those situations with his 6-foot-3 frame, knowing that they’d likely struggle to get a piece of the ball on outstretched or high throws.
“Most of my scores came from red zone (drives), if not deep bombs,” Montoya said. “I like being a go-to target, especially in the red zone, with not just my height, but (also) my route running ability just to get open and get a quick-score touchdown when we need it.”
Such moments included a 19-yard touchdown reception down the far-right side on a corner route just before halftime against Deming during the 2019 5A state quarterfinals.
Montoya said he was also able to break off defenders and create separation.
“I just make them think I’m going in. Right when they commit left, I go right,” Montoya said.
Montoya also said he noticed those smaller defensive backs struggled to cleanly get their hands on the ball for an interception, so they’d have to settle for getting an arm in there to force a possible pass breakup.
“If I see that he has leverage on them, I’m going to put it there. I can put it anywhere, and I trust Max to go up there and get it for me. He’s a great receiver. He goes up and gets it whenever he can,” Scorpions quarterback Caleb Carrillo said. “He has really long arms, so he can jump up and still snag the ball however low it is (or) high it is.”
Montoya said that because he learned to run his routes a bit quicker against those smaller, quicker defenders, he’s confident that can also translate to beating taller defenders with that same quickness.
Matt Hollinshead covers sports and business for the Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577, email@example.com and on Twitter at @MattH_717.
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