WRs to watch

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dead_poet
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by dead_poet » Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:02 pm

I don't know why I'm feeling so pessimistic today.
mondry wrote:Glass half-full:

Jennings is a much better receiver who's used to being in sync with the QB, runs better routes, understands timing, a much better target to see if Ponder "gets it." 2 yard passes to Harvin are nice but not a good way to "test" your QB
I just don't know if he's an overall better receiver. Harvin stays healthy all 16 games last season and I would bet he eclipses Jennings' best season with an arguably much worse QB.
Simpson should be healthy and makes a fine #3 WR
He's still a very large question mark.
J.Wright makes an even bigger impact in his second year. Averaged about 44 YPG, translates to 708 yards in a full 16 games, not bad for a #2 / rookie.
He showed promise, but the jury is still out on him. He performed well when given the opportunity. That's all that could've been asked from him.
Carlson will be working hard to prove himself, he has to if he wants another contract in the NFL (not just the Vikings)
All I'll say is he has a lot to prove. I don't see him being much of a threat/factor, but I hope I'm wrong. At this point I think Ellison brings more to the table.
Jenkins is gone but was outperformed by a hobbled simpson anyway, wouldn't want him on the field anyway.
I think you're mixed up. Jenkins had a 40/449/2 stat line compared to Simpson's 26/274/0. I'm actually relieved Jenkins is gone. An early round rookie should have considerable more upside.
I still expect a WR in the first 3 picks, but I wouldn't be blown away if they didn't take one. If we got a combination of BPA's at LB, G, DT, or CB none of those would be bad moves in my book. I wouldn't under estimate the effect a good guard could have on Ponder and the offense either, their inconsistent play really hurt the passing game at times and Charlie Johnson isn't getting any younger or better sadly.
While guard isn't a strength and there's room for competition at both spots, I think our receivers are more of a weakness in the pass game. Johnson and Fusco are serviceable (I'm being a little generous).
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by Mothman » Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:14 pm

losperros wrote:Of course, that's because I happen to agree with McShay on most of it. Seriously, folks, this is all more subjective than one thinks. :D
You can say that again!
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by losperros » Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:26 pm

dead_poet wrote:I don't know why I'm feeling so pessimistic today.
Well, I guess I am as well, because I agree with your concerns. I mean, would the Vikings be in an admitted "rebuilding" mode if there weren't talent gaps on the team?
dead_poet wrote:While guard isn't a strength and there's room for competition at both spots, I think our receivers are more of a weakness in the pass game. Johnson and Fusco are serviceable (I'm being a little generous).
Generous but accurate. No doubt about it, WR is a front burner need.

I still say the Vikings have enough picks to pick two WRs and that's what they should do. They need it.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by Mothman » Wed Apr 17, 2013 3:36 pm

dead_poet wrote:I just don't know if he's an overall better receiver. Harvin stays healthy all 16 games last season and I would bet he eclipses Jennings' best season with an arguably much worse QB.
... an arguably much worse QB but a QB who had fewer quality passing options as well, which can factor into receiving production.

Harvin averaged 6 catches for 75.2 yards per game last season and had 3 TDs. IF he could have sustained that pace for 16 games without dropping off, he would have had 110 catches for 1203 yards and 5 or 6 TDs. Jennings' best season in GB was in 2010, when he had 76 catches for 1265 yards and 12 TDs.

Throw in rushing yards and Harvin probably tops Jennings' best yardage total but can Percy sustain a productive pace like that for a full year? He has yet to start every game in a 16 game season.

Anyway, Jennings is the more skilled player, Percy probably the more explosive player (and certainly younger). If Jennings stays healthy, i certainly don't think he's a downgrade and he's possibly an upgrade due to the superior skill set.
All I'll say is he has a lot to prove. I don't see him being much of a threat/factor, but I hope I'm wrong. At this point I think Ellison brings more to the table.
I do too and I've been wondering for a long time now if the Vikes might not draft Eifert if he fell to them. He might be able to fill the role they initially had in mind for Carlson. It's a long shot and would be a very surprising move but I'm not sure I'd completely rule it out. I can imagine the angry shockwaves that would send through Vikes fandom... :)
While guard isn't a strength and there's room for competition at both spots, I think our receivers are more of a weakness in the pass game. Johnson and Fusco are serviceable (I'm being a little generous).
Actually, I'd call that accurate, not generous. They are serviceable and Fusco could become much more. I thought he showed real promise last season.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by mondry » Wed Apr 17, 2013 4:39 pm

dead_poet wrote:I don't know why I'm feeling so pessimistic today.

He showed promise, but the jury is still out on him. He performed well when given the opportunity. That's all that could've been asked from him.
If that's how you see it, I think he showed a lot more than promise, he was downright dangerous!
I think you're mixed up. Jenkins had a 40/449/2 stat line compared to Simpson's 26/274/0. I'm actually relieved Jenkins is gone. An early round rookie should have considerable more upside.
Yeah, perhaps in the stats, but the coaching staff still thought more of a hobbled simpson often putting him out there anyway. I'm not too concerned about the numbers, JS drew a lot more pass interference penalty's that don't show up in the stat sheet and Jenkins often got his yardage late in games when they were playing prevent, not that it doesn't count.
While guard isn't a strength and there's room for competition at both spots, I think our receivers are more of a weakness in the pass game. Johnson and Fusco are serviceable (I'm being a little generous).
I think it's pretty close tbh, but that's my opinion. If Jennings gets hurt then our WR's are much more vulnerable compared to if Johnson got hurt so the smart move imo is to add one more WR, I'm not quite sold a run heavy, 2 WR / 2 TE set offense needs to invest in 4-5 good wide receivers but again that might just be me. If the coaches said they planned to move away from their bread and butter bunch formations I'd be more inclined to say we should take 2 WR's.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by MrPurplenGold » Wed Apr 17, 2013 5:26 pm

dead_poet wrote: A case could certainly be made for that, but I would be HIGHLY surprised if a WR wasn't selected in the first two rounds for one reason: Christian Ponder. Make no mistake about it, this is Ponder's "Prove it" year. He's Spielman's selection and you can believe Spielman will surround him with more weapons and give him a greater chance to succeed. In my view our receivers still aren't good enough by any stretch of the imagination. We have Jennings, and no other proven receiver. Actually, a case could be made we're worse off at this point than we were a year ago with the subtraction of Harvin.

Glass half-empty:

Best receiver is gone and replaced with a good player, but arguably a lesser talent
Simpson was awful last season and he's back.
Wright is unproven.
Carlson was invisible and he's back (the Vikings can look for more production from him, but how much more? And does that happen?)
Jenkins is gone, eliminating a decent third-down receiver (granted he was unproductive last season as well).

They need to keep adding talent if Ponder has a chance to succeed and the pass offense has a chance to be more productive.
The Vikings top receivers at the beginning of last year were Harvin, Jenkins and Aromashadu. The Vikings top receivers this year are Jennings, Wright and Simpson. Wright didn't catch a pass until week 10 and Jenkins only outperformed him by 18 catches and 130 yards. Simpson has another offseason in the system and if he can remain healthy will be better than last year. The only question mark is can Jenkins put up similar numbers to Harvin, probably not. He doesn't have to though, as a whole, I think the WR corps is an upgrade from what it was last year.

Also, the Vikings will have 4 UFA on the D-Line next year. With that K-Will is already on the decline. Even if the D-Line performs at an equal level this year, in 2014 it's going to be a mess. I think if there is a 3 technique DT they like, I think they will push WR to the side.

Me personally, I think CB is the top need for the Vikings. Cook has not played an entire season, Josh Robinson eventually got benched last year, and Jefferson was downright terrible. I think CB is going to be a high priority on the Vikings radar during the draft.

I think MLB and CB don't have as much depth as WR and DT, and of course that is going to play into their decision on how they draft. If they don't take a MLB in round 1, they may not find another "impact" MLB in the draft. CB has a lot more depth to it, but still not as much as WR or DT. I think WR is the deepest position in this year's draft and I think that will play a factor into how they arrange their draft boards. I just think a rookie at DT, CB and MLB have more of an opportunity to come in and make an impact right away more so than a WR.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by PacificNorseWest » Wed Apr 17, 2013 6:29 pm

mrc44 wrote:I think Mcshay is a joke.
This. Can't hate the hustle though. Fake it 'til you make it.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by Eli » Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:03 pm

dead_poet wrote:Actually, a case could be made we're worse off at this point than we were a year ago with the subtraction of Harvin.
You wouldn't have to make a case. I think most people would agree with that.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by John_Viveiros » Wed Apr 17, 2013 7:43 pm

Interesting - I thought this was the big takeaway from the McShay article:
Justin Hunter
School: Tennessee
McShay: "If you're looking for someone to run vertical routes and stretch the field … a poor man's Randy Moss, that's what Justin Hunter is. … He's a silky-smooth route runner, and he's the guy quite honestly when they needed a throw, when they needed to pick up a first down, when they needed a play at Tennessee, that's where they went. It wasn't to the other guy, Patterson. He's the one who showed up consistently on tape. I think he's a better football player than Cordarelle Patterson."
Remember, I'm just a guy who hasn't seen any of these guys play. The words that catch my eye are "silky smooth route runner" and "when they needed a play" they went to Hunter.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by Texas Vike » Wed Apr 17, 2013 8:38 pm

The Norseman (Arif) is doing a gradual countdown with in-depth analysis, by tier, of the WR prospects. His set of criteria is pretty sound, if a bit verbose. My main reservation is that I think he overestimates Speilman's motive to get a WR that can produce now. Even so, it is worth a read:

The split end will also be the player generally asked to operate the "constraint plays," which will be screens to stretch the defense horizontally and deep routes to stretch it vertically, so speed is good. Like I said above, however, it's not a controlling factor. Getting open and providing opportunities to move the ball are more critical parts of the offense.

Beyond that, the Vikings need receivers specifically to emphasize Ponder's strength and hide his weaknesses. That means receivers who can capitalize on extended plays by finding open spaces, receivers who know how to hit their breaks with correct timing and secure the ball in traffic to take advantage of what Ponder can do.

To cover his weaknesses, the best fits at receiver will have a wide catch radius to compensate for poor ball placement and a good ability to generate yards after the catch in order to consistently move the chains.

One could argue that the short, possession-style receiving game is a product of Ponder's arm strength or simply not having receiver talent, but Musgrave used similar playbooks with the Jaguars and Panthers in his tenures with both of those franchises. Those teams had Muhsin Muhammad, Jimmy Smith (perhaps the most underrated receiver in history) and Donald Hayes. It's wasn't just a question of receiver or quarterback (he had Byron Leftwich, Steve Beuerlein and David Garrard) ability-Musgrave simply likes to run shorter routes. If you don't believe that, Wobschall says the same.

Finally, evaluating Christian Ponder is a top priority. If the receiver is not ready to contribute right away, then there's not much they can do to help the front office evaluate Christian Ponder. It will be difficult to find a receiver who can do that. In the past ten years, the top 64 picks have produced 14 receivers who have had over 800 yards from scrimmage in their rookie year (out of 79 who played in games). Of those, only four chosen between pick 23 and 52 produced 800 yards (out of 36 who played games). This doesn't include those who haven't made an impact in games, like A.J. Jenkins.

So, finding one who can adapt to the NFL game immediately is a priority. I cannot emphasize the rarity of this trait and the importance of this point. You can find potential in any draft—since 1999, there has been at least one receiver who has recorded a 40-time of 4.35 or less and there is talk every year of raw "upside". Naturally, this board changes in big ways if the principles of immediate fit and instant impact are removed.
Tier 7 includes WRs 32-36, roughly projected to be taken between rounds 5-7.

I think he underrates Josh Boyce, again, for the immediate production criterion:
Josh Boyce would be a higher rank were his combine performance not interrupted by a fractured foot. I think he'll end up on an NFL field taking significant snaps, but he won't be able to do it quickly enough for the Vikings to use his additional weapons to let them evaluate the offense and Christian Ponder. He's probably a good long term investment. Assuming he takes significant snaps, his production score would earn him a spot in the upper tier of receivers.

Boyce is an incredibly strong receiver who is also relatively light on his feet. He's good at the release freeing himself from receivers and he punishes defenders for trying to jam him. He has a quick run up and is a smart route-runner who is both precise and explosive at the break. He knows his option routes and can read defenses with enough savvy to use them effectively.

I look forward to tiers 1-6.
http://www.dailynorseman.com/2013/4/16/ ... ers-Tier-7
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by CaptainKirov » Wed Apr 17, 2013 11:21 pm

mrc44 wrote:
The only thing that disqualifies the comparison of Patterson's drops to Hunters for me, is that the majority of Patterson's routes were short slants or at the line of scrimmage. I have never played wr or anything like that but I think it would be harder to catch the ball 30-40 yards down field (hunter) than I would be 10-15 yards down field. Hunter had to handle almost all the deep routes from what I have seen in film, because of Patterson's lack of knowledge in the route department. Does that sound correct? Would love to hear from a Tennessee fan.
Patterson's rout running question comes from the idea that he can only go deep(Or at least that's what i thought). From what ive read and saw, his problem is running the shorter routes more precicely. I guess ill have to watch more film or ask someone who knows more.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by dead_poet » Thu Apr 18, 2013 7:50 am

WR Allen's re-check was for ankle

The NFL Combine confirmed to ESPN's Adam Schefter that Cal WR Keenan Allen's recent medical re-check was related to a right ankle injury.

Schefter previously noted Allen posted an odd drug test when higher than normal water levels were found in his system. Allen has dealt with a PCL injury since November, but this ankle injury goes back to the Spring of 2012 when the receiver underwent surgery. There's a real chance the Cal product lasts until the middle part of the second day.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by Mothman » Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:07 am

Thanks for that info about Allen. I wonder if Schefter will apologize.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by dead_poet » Thu Apr 18, 2013 8:11 am

Mothman wrote:Thanks for that info about Allen. I wonder if Schefter will apologize.
Schefter apologizes for no man.

But I'm sure the initial report of a questionable drug test is accurate.
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Re: WRs to watch

Post by HardcoreVikesFan » Thu Apr 18, 2013 10:30 am

Mothman wrote:Thanks for that info about Allen. I wonder if Schefter will apologize.
Bah. Schefter has been a garbage reporter since he left NFL Network and went to ESPN.
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