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Old 12-20-2012, 06:42 AM    (permalink
scottyboy
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Originally Posted by AntoinCD View Post
Ok, just so I'm getting this right...you are basically saying that Welker only catches the ball 100+ times a year because its thrown to him 100+ times a year???

Well no ******* **** Sherlock

And ill reply once again, with how can anyone be sure how Crabtree would do in the Pats offense? Completely different responsibilities...oh yeah that's right, Crabtree was a 4 star recruit.
It's funny because Crabtree's the worst WR selected in the FIRST ROUND of that draft.

Yeah, I said it. (ok, maybe DHB is the flaw, but he's a raider, that's not his fault, they don't count)
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BTW, if it's 3rd and 97... I'm throwing a screen pass to Brian Leonard and he will convert.
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Old 12-20-2012, 07:32 AM    (permalink
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It's funny because Crabtree's the worst WR selected in the FIRST ROUND of that draft.

Yeah, I said it. (ok, maybe DHB is the flaw, but he's a raider, that's not his fault, they don't count)
Har har har.

Harvin and Nicks are 1 and 2. Crabs and Maclin are 3 and 4. Your boy Britt and DHB are 5 and 6.
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:02 AM    (permalink
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It's funny because Crabtree's the worst WR selected in the FIRST ROUND of that draft.

Yeah, I said it. (ok, maybe DHB is the flaw, but he's a raider, that's not his fault, they don't count)
I don't think we can close the book on Crabtree yet. I still believe if he continues to dedicate himself to his craft he can be the 2nd best receiver from that first round, and yes that includes Nicks.
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:10 AM    (permalink
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Guys, really think about it, how good would Tom Brady even be if his arms got cut off? I mean sure he looks great with both arms, but take those away and he's nothing special. How would he do without arms? No one can answer that.
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:16 AM    (permalink
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Guys, really think about it, how good would Tom Brady even be if his arms got cut off? I mean sure he looks great with both arms, but take those away and he's nothing special. How would he do without arms? No one can answer that.
Yes but he would still be better than Manning with his arms cut off. Obviously!!!!!!
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:17 AM    (permalink
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Guys, really think about it, how good would Tom Brady even be if his arms got cut off? I mean sure he looks great with both arms, but take those away and he's nothing special. How would he do without arms? No one can answer that.
His production would go way down if he could only hand it off to Danny Woodhead out of the I. He can't produce like Christian Ponder when it comes to handoffs in a run first scheme.
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:22 AM    (permalink
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Lloyd was already flashing that ability in SF with Tim Rattay before Hitler himself Mike Nolan threw him under the bus and sucked off Alex Smith for a few years(until Nolan realized what a shitcan Smith was).

You're caught up in the stats again, and you don't have the intellectual ability to provide context for yourself when it comes to those stats. QB play, scheme, and passing attempts all play a huge role in the end of the year tally.

Again, Lloyd was the guy who torched the 49er top 5 pass defense with amazing reception after amazing reception on Sunday night. Wes was the guy who got shut down by a worse corner than Lloyd faced and only had 1 big play on a play action fake that had him wide open in the flat.

Do patriot fans even watch the games?
So basically, your argument here is the Lloyd has always been super talented but his QB play, scheme, and coaches held him back until he got to Denver and McDaniels finally used him correctly and his production started matching his talent. So, basically, you are saying that he was always an elite receiver but nobody knew it because he had a chance to prove it. So if a player underperforms his talent level, its all because the scheme, coaches, and QB are holding him back.

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Scheme, Scheme, Scheme. This why you don't rate football player's talent based on their statistics. It would be one thing if the dude was winning on the outside and had a decent YPC, but the guy is always just a 10-11 YPC guy in an offense that slings it around as much as anyone.

Now the next question is....How good was Troy Brown?
Then here you are discussing how Welker only has good numbers/production because of the scheme he is in.

So if I understand your point of view correctly, the best receivers are the most talented ones and if a receiver underperforms his talent, its because of some combination of the scheme he's in and the QB that is throwing him the ball. Basically, talent trumps production. While sometimes this can legitimately be argued (see: Fitzgerald, Larry this year), I don't think you can just make that blanket statement. There have been plenty of uber-talented receivers that haven't panned out. Heck, DHB is more talented than Crabtree but I bet you would argue that Crabtree is the better receiver. Even in your first post you talk about how Brady is an All-World QB. Brady's natural talent is actually mediocre at best. JaMarcus Russell and Ryan Leaf were much more talented QBs, but that doesn't make them better QBs.

The fact is, I think most of us actually agree with some of the underlying arguments you are trying to make, such as production shouldn't be the only thing taken into consideration when determining the BEST overall receivers. That QB play and scheme plays a big role in the production of a receiver. However, you are too hell-bent on just arguing for the sake of arguing and attacking everyone to realize this.
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:23 AM    (permalink
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It's funny because Crabtree's the worst WR selected in the FIRST ROUND of that draft.

Yeah, I said it. (ok, maybe DHB is the flaw, but he's a raider, that's not his fault, they don't count)
Its okay Scotty, DHB is more talented so he's the better receiver.
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:26 AM    (permalink
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Its okay Scotty, DHB is more talented so he's the better receiver.
he runs faster and makes more acrobatic catches. GOAT.
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BTW, if it's 3rd and 97... I'm throwing a screen pass to Brian Leonard and he will convert.
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:56 AM    (permalink
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Guys, really think about it, how good would Tom Brady even be if his arms got cut off? I mean sure he looks great with both arms, but take those away and he's nothing special. How would he do without arms? No one can answer that.
You must spread some reputation around before giving more of it to killxswitch again.
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Old 12-20-2012, 10:04 AM    (permalink
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While I dont think the skill players are bad in NE.. this thread is hilarious.


So Talent/skill is being faster/throw further? And the players that are not the biggest or fastest are just benefitting from scheme? ... interesting.


DHB is the GOAT, Jamarcus Russel is a lock for HOF. Who needs players that actually perform, I mean every team needs to just go draft workout warriors and not people that are actually smart, understand football or have a work ethic.


People like Peyton Manning or Tom Brady couldnt hold Michael Vick or JaMarcus Russel's jock strap since football is obviously about having a rocket arm or being a qb that is to eager to run and get concussed.

And People like Jerry Rice(4.7 fourty) only were good because of scheme....



BACK to reality and how football is really played... Having a QB that can break a Defense down or manipulate defenders is actually much more important than having a cannon or being able to beat the WR in a foot race. And WR's have to be able to run crisp routes(no matter if they are shallow or deep) and when the ball is actually thrown their way they have to be able to use their hands to catch it...because being able to run past your defender does little good if you cant catch it.
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Old 12-20-2012, 10:58 AM    (permalink
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Scheme, Scheme, Scheme. This why you don't rate football player's talent based on their statistics. It would be one thing if the dude was winning on the outside and had a decent YPC, but the guy is always just a 10-11 YPC guy in an offense that slings it around as much as anyone.

Now the next question is....How good was Troy Brown?
If Welker is a hack being made by his system why doesn't every team have a Wes Welker to keep their passing game humming along? Is Belicheck just that much more genius than everybody else? And if so then why did he give up a quality pick and bunch of money for Welker? Seems pretty un-genius.

Or maybe the system just highlights Welkers strengths, his lateral quickness, reliability and intelligence to read coverages pre and post snap to always be exactly where Brady expects him to be. And maybe that's a great skill many NFL WRs struggle with when they're stuck in a complex option- or choice-based passing. Like the aforementioned Mario Manningham, who actually played in a very similar offense with the Giants, an offense where he was relegated to occasional big play threat because after years and years he still screwed up reading coverages and wasn't always where he needed to be and thus a reliable weapon? Mario's faster, more explosive than Welker and can make great acrobatic catches, but in that scheme he's a worse player because he struggles with the most important skill in that scheme, having the football intelligence to correctly read the situation and be where he needs to be.
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Old 12-20-2012, 11:00 AM    (permalink
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While I dont think the skill players are bad in NE.. this thread is hilarious.


So Talent/skill is being faster/throw further? And the players that are not the biggest or fastest are just benefitting from scheme? ... interesting.
A big part of the problem here is that people have a hard time separating talent and skill. They're two different things.
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Tannehill was a better QB (than Gabbert) when he was still playing WR
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Old 12-20-2012, 11:25 AM    (permalink
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Welker may not be the fastest, but at one point he was really quick, hell he still is. I think the dude is just reliable underneath and has an incredible football intelligence. I'll take solid hands/crisp routes/intelligence over natural ability any day.

And yes I'm saying Welker has great hands. With the amount of targets he gets a game he is bound to drop some. And yes I know he dropped the crucial pass in the superbowl. I was laughing and smiling just like every other non-pats fan, but that one play doesn't negate all the other times he has been money.
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Old 12-20-2012, 11:37 AM    (permalink
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Welker actually has a pretty high drop rate, even when you factor in the number of targets he gets.
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Old 12-20-2012, 12:58 PM    (permalink
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I think Welker is the perfect slot.. or just about.

Tough, quick, reliable hands and great route runner to get open.
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Old 12-20-2012, 12:59 PM    (permalink
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Welker actually has a pretty high drop rate, even when you factor in the number of targets he gets.
Some of that is bound to come with age as he's over 30 now. There was a stretch in the Houston game where someone commented he dropped 3 passes in a row. One was defended well, one was a bad throw and the 3rd he dropped.

How has this thead lasted this long really.
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:40 PM    (permalink
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I don't see him doing anything that separates himself from plenty of other slot receivers. I think Brandon Stokley was better, personally.

Tom Rathman also played a "critical option" in some of the most prolific offenses of all-time. Great? Hardly. Useful role player is more like it.
Except Rathman accounted for 4.3%, 9.8%, 13.7%, 14.7%, 10.9%, 8.0%, 8.7%, and 2.6% of those Niner offenses. Welker accounted for 17.9%, 19.9%, 21.2%, 14.6%, 22.9%, and 19.4% of those Patriot offenses. Even considering outliers, the difference in those set of percentages is quite noticeable.

Welker exceeds Rathmanís role and usefulness.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
What the game is gravitating towards is offensive shootouts, where receivers all over the place are putting up inflated numbers.
Iím not arguing that offensive metrics are inflated right now. Thatís never been a part of the argument. Even in Welkerís case, I think there are just a handful of situations where he could go and put up comparable numbers. However, numbers donít define skill sets.

And the skill set of Welker and receivers like him are a contributing factor. Being multiple isnít just about maintaining a good run/pass balance. Itís about showing a multitude of concepts from a multitude of formations. In an era of run-first offenses and controlled passing games, slot receivers werenít as valuable. Now, in an era of explosive proliferation for the passing game, slot receivers are vital. Coordinators want weapons. Outside weapons, inside weapons, backfield weapons, versatile weapons, etc. The complement of weapons completes the offense.

Current NFL concepts are an amalgam of old concepts with modern twists. The run-and-shoot didnít originate in New England and the Patriots didnít introduce the NFL to its concepts. But New England has integrated them Ė with Welker being the linchpin in the slot Ė to great success. It opens the offense to be more multiple. As an inside pivot, Welker allows the offense to adapt and bend based on what the defense is doing to them. That value supersedes statistics.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
I don't know where you got that idea. Monte Kiffen, on the Bucs' philosophy of defense (paraphrasing): "We're going to be as wide as the widest guy, as deep as the deepest guy, and everything wiggling around in the middle, we're going to hit."

A lot of teams give up the underneath stuff and play more of a "bend but don't break" kind of scheme. That's where the Patriots go to work.
Years of football.

Yes, the Tampa 2 is the quintessential bend-but-donít-break defense. Itís predicated on speed to the ball, being able to recover, bottling big gains, and forcing the offense to make stick throws into constricted windows.

Those are general defensive philosophies though. No defense wants to leave areas of the field uncontested. Within the í98 Buccaneers defensive scheme, there were strong enough inside-out concepts to where I feel comfortable calling it an inside-out defense, too. Cornerbacks got inside position. Safeties ran lurk. Linebackers ran spill and plug. Outside containment was stressed before getting in their Go & Green packages.

The inside-out approach is conventional. The further the ball has to travel, the higher the variance.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
The difference is, Brady is a great quarterback. If he were doing nothing in the Patriots' scheme but throwing easy, underneath passes, you could call him a "product of a system" and say he hasn't really proven anything. But as we've seen over the years, he can throw the intermediate and deep routes quite well.

Wes Welker? He hasn't done anything but catch the easy, underneath stuff.

A "product of a system" isn't just a guy who has his numbers inflated by the scheme. It's a player who would not excel outside that system.

Brady would not put up the same numbers in the kind of offense you are suggesting, but he'd still be more successful than most.

Wes Welker, if you lined him up outside and asked him to work one-on-one with a corner? He would never last as a starter. He would go from "first team All Pro" to, "backup/special teams duty."
Well, lining him up outside would be a gross misuse of his talents. What team would put an expensive asset in their worst position for success? Thatís like signing an explosive tight end and then using him as an in-line blocker. Or a penetrating under tackle and using him as a nose tackle. Did their skill set/value of their skill set change? It didnít. But their platform to show that skill set did.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
The other difference is - the guys you listed all truly excel in some area where most others don't.

I don't believe Welker truly excels at much of anything, and what he does do well is something that is easy to find. That's why he's overrated, and that's why he's a product of a system. I believe you could plug Julian Edelman into his role and get similar production. I believe you could do the same with Eddie Royal and Jordan Shipley. I believe you could exceed his production with Randall Cobb.
This is our fundamental difference of opinion.

Wes Welker excels at an intangible trait. Being able to make the correct sight adjustments and linking with his quarterbackís thinking. Itís his equalizer. He thinks the game better than most receivers. Itís the reason heís overcome his measurable disadvantage.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
When you can't do anything special, you become a Wes Welker-type. A guy who can't get deep and who won't break anything for a long gain after the catch, but who will be open regularly underneath when it's all spread out and he's matched up with linebackers. A guy who can catch the screens and stay behind his blockers as long as possible and pick up positive yardage.

You get a guy who catches 100-something passes, but averages just 11 yards/catch and scores few touchdowns.
You act like Wes Welkerís never caught a pass past the sticks. Itís not where he thrives, but he will get downfield. And he will find intermediate-to-deep holes if there, too. Does that make him a special downfield receiver? Nope. Not at all. But heís not stuck in an underneath bubble where as soon as he leaves that bubble he forgets how to do simple things of a functional receiver.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
First of all, Chad was clearly on the downside of his career when leaving Cincinnati. After his resurgence to the "low-end number one/high-end number two" status you mention in 2009, he proceeded to put up just 67-831-4 in 2010.

When he got to New England, he barely played. You can't produce if you're not on the field. The rumors going around were that he didn't know the playbook. He may have simply been in the wrong mind state when he got there and not even bothered to try to learn it. You never know with Chad...he's a weirdo.
Youíve said Ė over and over Ė that what Welker does isnít hard. That thereís an abundance of receivers that can step into New Englandís offense and produce more. So when the Patriots sign a former Pro Bowl wide receiver, and he canít learn their scheme, perhaps itís harder than believed to be?

Narrative or not, Chad Johnsonís QABS is still better than Welkerís. Couldnít he have just done the uncomplicated stuff that Welker does and done it better? Run the underneath junk, beat linebackers, catch open passes, etc.?

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
Again, you seem to be suggesting he's some sort of "braniac" at the receiver position. I'm not buying it to begin with...and even if that were true, so what? Stephen Hawking could probably catch some of the passes Welker has from his wheelchair. Football is not and will never be a nerd's profession.

I'm quite certain there are plenty of receivers capable of learning these intricacies. I'm sure it pales in comparison to what quarterbacks have to learn.
Thatís an antiquated belief.

At the highest level, a lot of spatial awareness and methodical thought goes into the design of each offensive call and scheme. Thereís not much separating NFL teams. The biggest separator is the details. Mike Singletary was an outstanding football player. Toughness personified. As a coach? Underwhelming. Football might not be a ďnerdísĒ profession, but as far as offensive coaches go, the best ones have bright minds and a penchant for active pattern recognition.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
What he really has to do is recognize what the coverage is and try to run to where they ain't. He's not facing octuple coverage, and he doesn't get open on every single passing play. What he tries to do, when he's not catching a screen, is make the logical decision. If he's matched up with a linebacker, that's probably a good matchup. If he's going against zone, he has to figure out where the hole in the zone is, or head towards the zone of someone who is a good matchup. If there's a dropped coverage, he's trained to turn around and look for the ball. One of his catches against the 49ers came off a double blitz on his side of the field. When given a free release and space to operate, he knows to look for the ball.

Not that complicated.
Youíre Wes Welker.

Your offense comes out in a one-back shotgun formation on third-and-fifteen. Twins to each side. You split to the tight side of the field and scan the defense from the slot. Itís a nickel sub-package. Youíve aligned against a disengaged corner. The free safety is eighteen yards downfield and aligned inside the hashmark. The strong safety is twelve yards downfield and aligned outside the opposite hashmark. You read the PSLB. Heís aligned on the inside hip of the offensive guard. Film preparation revealed strong tendencies to blitz from that position and rotate the SS to a robber zone. Your outside receiver is running a curl/hook option. The opposite inside receiver is running a crossing route. The other is a clear-out route. The ball is about to be snapped. The corner creeps up.

The ball is snapped. The corner opens his hips and shoulders from the quarterback. You peek to the safeties while releasing. The FS tightens to his hashmark. The SS backpedals and the PSLB isnít blitzing. Heís dropping into a shallow zone.

You run what route? You run it at what depth? You run it at what angle?

You have a fraction of a second to decide.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
I sincerely doubt you've legitimately seen Welker beat Revis. What you saw, if you're thinking of one play in particular that I remember, was Revis letting Welker by thinking Eric Smith was going to pick him up over the top. Smith didn't, and Welker was wide open. It was a blown coverage.

Revis, of course, proceeded to walk him down in the open field, despite starting out a good 5-7 yards behind when Welker caught the ball.
Nope. Iím not talking about busted coverages. Iíve seen Welker beat Revis on jerk routes before.

And the fact that Revis even aligns over Welker should speak to how defenses view Welker. Rex doesnít waste Revis. He uses him as an eraser.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
I believe 5 different coaching staffs (actually 4) had no interest in running the Patriots' scheme back then. I believe teams were hoping for Edwards's athletic ability to translate into him being a game breaker, and it didn't. What they were left with was just a guy with quickness who could run the easier, shorter patterns that so many other guys could run. And teams had seen a lot of those types come through the door and there was a logjam and they preferred to try to find someone who could do more than just the expected. He was seen as a useful veteran addition for a year or two after he was declared a bust in Pittsburgh.
Youíre not just suggesting poor evaluation then. Youíre suggesting incompetence among five (or four) staffs. Thatís even worse. If scheming underneath stuff from the slot is so simple, Edwards shouldíve stuck sooner.

Look, if manufacturing inside production from a wide receiver is the easiest offensive concept in the world, where are all of the slot receivers with over 100 receptions and 1,000 receiving yards? Tom Brady isnít the only elite quarterback in the NFL. If a slot receiverís value is tied to his quarterback, there should be more Wes Welkerís. Or is New England the sole team thatís smart enough to capitalize on an obvious loophole?

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
Welker wasn't invited to the combine. NFL Draft Scout has his pro day figures up, though.

He may have had a very good shuttle time, but his 3-cone drill time was lousy (7.09).

If we're only comparing him to other players who are under 6 feet and under 200 pounds, I don't think he's all that much quicker than average for that classification.
The three-cone drill is used to measure change of direction abilities and fluidness through a succession of cuts. I donít think Welker is elusive, so his three-cone time is more or less irrelevant to me. I said heís quick.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
If he was playing the same role in the same scheme as Welker, why was the average distance in which he caught a pass from the line of scrimmage that season 9.7 yards? (http://sports.yahoo.com/nfl/players/5951/career : 12.8 AVG - 3.1 YAC avg)

Wes Welker's average distances in New England:

2007: 4.8
2008: 3.7
2009: 5.1
2010: 4.9
2011: 6.7
2012: 5.4

Might I suggest they actually weren't quite in comparable situations?
The average distance from line of scrimmage surprises me. The slot concepts and design were still similar if not tweaked a bit. And the results still werenít as good as Welkerís.

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Originally Posted by JordanTaber View Post
Because a catch, by itself, is utterly worthless. You get nothing for the catch. It's what the catch results in that matters.

It would be like calling a back who carried it 400 times for 1200 yards "prolific."

1100+ yard seasons, by themselves, would not have anyone clamoring for the Hall of Fame. Especially when they are accompanied by single digit touchdowns.

But do them on 100+ catches every year, and all of a sudden people take notice...because they're operating under the false belief that reception total is a valuable statistic.

It's the exact opposite of the way it should be.

A receiver who gets 1100+ yard seasons, while not doing anything unheard of or worth declaring him a future HOFer for, is far more impressive when he does it on fewer receptions (and especially when they are accompanied by touchdowns).

You throw the ball to a receiver enough, especially with the right play design, and he's going to eventually rack up the yardage, no matter how slow and unexplosive he is.

As for first downs...teams don't want to surrender them, but when they are out-schemed, sometimes they have no choice. You can't tackle Welker if you're being blocked on the screen. Welker has always had low 1st down percentages for his receptions, too. He just gets so many freak'n passes that he's bound to rack up plenty of first downs, too.
A reception is not the equivalent of a rushing attempt. Offensive game-calling deals with expected outcomes. The difference between 3 YPC and 11 YPC speaks for itself.

Iíve never listed Welker as a Hall of Famer. Or even an All-Pro talent. No one should. But substantiating skill sets based on electable credentials is meritless. Is there no middle ground between being a Hall of Famer and being a pedestrian receiver thatís slow and unexplosive and a talentless product? Because the fact is Welker falls somewhere within that spectrum.
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Old 12-21-2012, 01:58 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by scottyboy View Post
he runs faster and makes more acrobatic catches. GOAT.
Actually, Crabtree does make more acrobatic catches than DHB. You're starting to see that more with Kaepernick slowly.

Crabtree is also top 5 currently in pure RAC ability.
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Old 12-21-2012, 02:05 AM    (permalink
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It's funny because Crabtree's the worst WR selected in the FIRST ROUND of that draft.

Yeah, I said it. (ok, maybe DHB is the flaw, but he's a raider, that's not his fault, they don't count)
Lemme guess. Statzzzz
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Old 12-21-2012, 02:16 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by Rosebud View Post
If Welker is a hack being made by his system why doesn't every team have a Wes Welker to keep their passing game humming along?
Because some teams have a Calvin Johnson, an Andre Johnson, a Larry Fitzgerald, a Steve Smith, etc.

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Is Belicheck just that much more genius than everybody else?
Yes, he is. But sometimes he is also a genius at shooting himself in the foot.

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And if so then why did he give up a quality pick and bunch of money for Welker? Seems pretty un-genius.
Let's flip that around. Why did the Dolphins give him up for just a 2nd round draft choice if he's that good? If they had a legitimately exceptional wide receiver (who also did pretty well on punt returns for them), why didn't the Dolphins decide to keep him as their leading receiver...or at the very least ask for more in compensation?

Either it's Belichick's genius scheme that is responsible, or the Dolphins are complete idiots AND Belichick is a genius at evaluating talent and just saw that the Dolphins had this all-time great on their roster and pounced.

If that's the case, and Belichick is a genius at evaluating talent...it sure is funny how he can't find a good draft choice to save his life anymore.

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Or maybe the system just highlights Welkers strengths, his lateral quickness, reliability and intelligence to read coverages pre and post snap to always be exactly where Brady expects him to be. And maybe that's a great skill many NFL WRs struggle with when they're stuck in a complex option- or choice-based passing. Like the aforementioned Mario Manningham, who actually played in a very similar offense with the Giants, an offense where he was relegated to occasional big play threat because after years and years he still screwed up reading coverages and wasn't always where he needed to be and thus a reliable weapon? Mario's faster, more explosive than Welker and can make great acrobatic catches, but in that scheme he's a worse player because he struggles with the most important skill in that scheme, having the football intelligence to correctly read the situation and be where he needs to be.
The Giants have these guys named "Hakeem Nicks" and "Victor Cruz." They posted pretty good numbers, you know. Kind of hard for Mario Manningham to catch 120 passes for 1200 yards and 7 touchdowns in a situation like that.
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Old 12-21-2012, 04:37 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by Cudders View Post
Except Rathman accounted for 4.3%, 9.8%, 13.7%, 14.7%, 10.9%, 8.0%, 8.7%, and 2.6% of those Niner offenses. Welker accounted for 17.9%, 19.9%, 21.2%, 14.6%, 22.9%, and 19.4% of those Patriot offenses. Even considering outliers, the difference in those set of percentages is quite noticeable.

Welker exceeds Rathman’s role and usefulness.
Fine. Earnest Byner accounted for 23.6% of the 1991 Redskins' offensive yardage. He wasn't great, either.

Eddie Kennison accounted for 16.4% of the 2004 Chiefs' offensive yardage. Clearly not a great wide receiver.


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I’m not arguing that offensive metrics are inflated right now. That’s never been a part of the argument. Even in Welker’s case, I think there are just a handful of situations where he could go and put up comparable numbers. However, numbers don’t define skill sets.

And the skill set of Welker and receivers like him are a contributing factor. Being multiple isn’t just about maintaining a good run/pass balance. It’s about showing a multitude of concepts from a multitude of formations. In an era of run-first offenses and controlled passing games, slot receivers weren’t as valuable. Now, in an era of explosive proliferation for the passing game, slot receivers are vital. Coordinators want weapons. Outside weapons, inside weapons, backfield weapons, versatile weapons, etc. The complement of weapons completes the offense.

Current NFL concepts are an amalgam of old concepts with modern twists. The run-and-shoot didn’t originate in New England and the Patriots didn’t introduce the NFL to its concepts. But New England has integrated them – with Welker being the linchpin in the slot – to great success. It opens the offense to be more multiple. As an inside pivot, Welker allows the offense to adapt and bend based on what the defense is doing to them. That value supersedes statistics.
And yet apparently Belichick's idea of "weapons" is Welker, Danny Woodhead, Julian Edelman, and cutting and re-signing Donte Stallworth and Deion Branch about a dozen times.

The other teams who have the coaches and the quarterbacks to run schemes that inflate numbers like this are doing just fine, whether they have a star receiver they like to throw downfield to, or a similarly unimpressive receiving corps.

The Saints, for example, have Lance Moore, a journeyman at best, approaching 1,000 yards.

Welker may "allow" the Patriots to do things on offense, but my contention is Julian Edelman would "allow" the same things.

And here's what a fellow product of a system, Brett Perriman, had to say about Welker a few years ago:

"Wes Welker. With the system New England runs and Randy Moss alone drawing double and triple coverage, (Welker) runs 5-yard option routes. I can send a below-average player to do the same thing and you will get the same results."

Perriman may have been projecting a little, and the presence of Moss had nothing to do with anything other than possibly taking targets away from Welker, but this is a former NFL receiver (who caught 108 and 94 passes in a run-and-shoot) saying this.


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Years of football.

Yes, the Tampa 2 is the quintessential bend-but-don’t-break defense. It’s predicated on speed to the ball, being able to recover, bottling big gains, and forcing the offense to make stick throws into constricted windows.

Those are general defensive philosophies though. No defense wants to leave areas of the field uncontested. Within the ’98 Buccaneers defensive scheme, there were strong enough inside-out concepts to where I feel comfortable calling it an inside-out defense, too. Cornerbacks got inside position. Safeties ran lurk. Linebackers ran spill and plug. Outside containment was stressed before getting in their Go & Green packages.

The inside-out approach is conventional. The further the ball has to travel, the higher the variance.
The guys who've covered Welker inside over the years? Usually either a linebacker or a nickel or dime back. Sometimes teams just played zone.

And if he can't get open inside, no worries. They'll just throw him a bunch of screens and set up blocking for him. The only way teams can play that is by reading it. If the defense doesn't jump on it immediately, it's too late.


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Well, lining him up outside would be a gross misuse of his talents. What team would put an expensive asset in their worst position for success? That’s like signing an explosive tight end and then using him as an in-line blocker. Or a penetrating under tackle and using him as a nose tackle. Did their skill set/value of their skill set change? It didn’t. But their platform to show that skill set did.
If a receiver can't line up outside and beat anyone one-on-one, how good a receiver is he, really?

The attributes you and others seem to think are necessary for guys to play the slot really aren't necessary at all.

The vast majority of successful outside receivers (and I'm qualifying this) can play just fine in the slot.

Terrell Owens used to play plenty in the slot. He was never a great route runner...never known as a "cerebral" receiver. But he could sure outrun a linebacker on a drag or beat a nickel corner. When he did the latter, he usually did it on more of a vertical pattern.

What you are classifying as a "niche," I classify as a limitation. The slot isn't off-limits to outside receivers...even the taller ones who don't come out of their breaks that well. But split end is off-limits to Welker.


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You act like Wes Welker’s never caught a pass past the sticks. It’s not where he thrives, but he will get downfield. And he will find intermediate-to-deep holes if there, too. Does that make him a special downfield receiver? Nope. Not at all. But he’s not stuck in an underneath bubble where as soon as he leaves that bubble he forgets how to do simple things of a functional receiver.
Couldn't you say the same for Troy Brown?


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You’ve said – over and over – that what Welker does isn’t hard. That there’s an abundance of receivers that can step into New England’s offense and produce more. So when the Patriots sign a former Pro Bowl wide receiver, and he can’t learn their scheme, perhaps it’s harder than believed to be?
I don't think it's that Chad couldn't learn it. I think it's that he didn't want to learn it because his head wasn't in the game. The guy has demonstrated he's not exactly the most reliable person in the world.


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That’s an antiquated belief.

At the highest level, a lot of spatial awareness and methodical thought goes into the design of each offensive call and scheme. There’s not much separating NFL teams. The biggest separator is the details. Mike Singletary was an outstanding football player. Toughness personified. As a coach? Underwhelming. Football might not be a “nerd’s” profession, but as far as offensive coaches go, the best ones have bright minds and a penchant for active pattern recognition.
I was talking about the players (particularly, the skill position guys). You don't see teams worrying about receivers scoring low on the Wonderlic. It's when a quarterback does that it raises a giant red flag.

Even then, Dan Marino scored a 13 and went on to be one of the best ever. Most dedicated players should be able to learn any football scheme thrown their way.

Yes, coaching/scheming is one of the biggest things separating teams. How else can the Patriots keep doing it year after year, despite having lost nearly everyone from their 3 Super Bowl winning teams?


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You’re Wes Welker.

Your offense comes out in a one-back shotgun formation on third-and-fifteen. Twins to each side. You split to the tight side of the field and scan the defense from the slot. It’s a nickel sub-package. You’ve aligned against a disengaged corner. The free safety is eighteen yards downfield and aligned inside the hashmark. The strong safety is twelve yards downfield and aligned outside the opposite hashmark. You read the PSLB. He’s aligned on the inside hip of the offensive guard. Film preparation revealed strong tendencies to blitz from that position and rotate the SS to a robber zone. Your outside receiver is running a curl/hook option. The opposite inside receiver is running a crossing route. The other is a clear-out route. The ball is about to be snapped. The corner creeps up.

The ball is snapped. The corner opens his hips and shoulders from the quarterback. You peek to the safeties while releasing. The FS tightens to his hashmark. The SS backpedals and the PSLB isn’t blitzing. He’s dropping into a shallow zone.

You run what route? You run it at what depth? You run it at what angle?
First of all, if I'm Welker, chances are I'm not catching a first down if we're 15 yards away. I'm probably going to be tossed a screen pass and my job will be to see how many yards I can slip through for to set up a field goal or a punt. That should add a good 12 yards to my total for the day and help out my average.

But no matter.

It would depend on the play called. Welker's not out there just freelancing his routes. What are my, uh, options?

And where are we on the field? Are we close to field goal range? Are we near our own endzone?



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Nope. I’m not talking about busted coverages. I’ve seen Welker beat Revis on jerk routes before.

And the fact that Revis even aligns over Welker should speak to how defenses view Welker. Rex doesn’t waste Revis. He uses him as an eraser.
If Welker "beat" him for a 5 yard pass, I'm not really interested.

The only reason you'll ever see Revis on Welker now is Randy Moss is gone. When Moss was there, Revis was shadowing him.

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You’re not just suggesting poor evaluation then. You’re suggesting incompetence among five (or four) staffs. That’s even worse. If scheming underneath stuff from the slot is so simple, Edwards should’ve stuck sooner.
Edwards is just one example of a guy who could do what most smaller receivers to play in the NFL could do - the Wes Welker stuff. Those staffs were only incompetent in comparison to Belichick's staff, and it wasn't with their talent evaluation - it was with their schemes. Everyone is inferior to Belichick when it comes to X's and O's.


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Look, if manufacturing inside production from a wide receiver is the easiest offensive concept in the world, where are all of the slot receivers with over 100 receptions and 1,000 receiving yards? Tom Brady isn’t the only elite quarterback in the NFL. If a slot receiver’s value is tied to his quarterback, there should be more Wes Welker’s. Or is New England the sole team that’s smart enough to capitalize on an obvious loophole?
There are only so many receptions and yards to go around. Do you think the Packers and Saints are going, "gee, I sure wish we had a slot guy catching 100 for 1,000 for us. Our passing game just isn't good enough with this spread-it-around mentality we have?"

Do you think the Falcons are going, "if only we had a guy we could complete 120 screens and drags to, rather than torching teams with Julio Jones and Roddy White all over the field?"

A lot of teams consider themselves successful on offense and have no desire to be the Patriots.

And then some teams are just bad, and the coaches responsible for those bad teams are going to be fired. So yes, they're not smart enough to do what Belichick does...and they'll pay with their jobs.


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The three-cone drill is used to measure change of direction abilities and fluidness through a succession of cuts. I don’t think Welker is elusive, so his three-cone time is more or less irrelevant to me. I said he’s quick.
Change of direction/agility is part of quickness.

The other thing to look at would be his acceleration. Unfortunately, NFLDraftScout doesn't have his 10 yard time.

There's no denying Welker has short strides. Most smaller athletes do.


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The average distance from line of scrimmage surprises me. The slot concepts and design were still similar if not tweaked a bit. And the results still weren’t as good as Welker’s.
Obviously not if there's such a vast difference in where the passes were being caught.

Maybe if Branch had caught as many screen passes as Welker his numbers would have been more similar. As it was, he had 998 yards and 5 TDs.


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A reception is not the equivalent of a rushing attempt. Offensive game-calling deals with expected outcomes. The difference between 3 YPC and 11 YPC speaks for itself.
It's damn close when so many of the passes Welker catches are basically long handoffs.

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I’ve never listed Welker as a Hall of Famer. Or even an All-Pro talent. No one should. But substantiating skill sets based on electable credentials is meritless. Is there no middle ground between being a Hall of Famer and being a pedestrian receiver that’s slow and unexplosive and a talentless product? Because the fact is Welker falls somewhere within that spectrum.
There are fans all over the internet saying Welker should be in the Hall of Fame. That's why I call him "the most overrated player in the history of organized sports."

I remember the first time I saw him play in 2004 against the 49ers. I thought to myself, "hmmm, useful little punt returner. Maybe can also contribute as a #3 receiver." And that's exactly what he did in Miami. And that's exactly what I see him as today.

It wasn't until he succeeded the likes of Branch and Givens and Caldwell and Brown and Patten and Gaffney that he became a household name. All of a sudden, there was a team throwing to an obvious #3 receiver as though they were handing it off to a running back and daring teams to stop it. When it was Troy Brown, it was over in a hurry.
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Old 12-21-2012, 05:14 AM    (permalink
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Originally Posted by Cudders View Post
Except Rathman accounted for 4.3%, 9.8%, 13.7%, 14.7%, 10.9%, 8.0%, 8.7%, and 2.6% of those Niner offenses. Welker accounted for 17.9%, 19.9%, 21.2%, 14.6%, 22.9%, and 19.4% of those Patriot offenses. Even considering outliers, the difference in those set of percentages is quite noticeable.

Welker exceeds Rathman’s role and usefulness.
Fine. Earnest Byner accounted for 23.6% of the 1991 Redskins' offensive yardage. He wasn't great, either.

Eddie Kennison accounted for 16.4% of the 2004 Chiefs' offensive yardage. Clearly not a great wide receiver.


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I’m not arguing that offensive metrics are inflated right now. That’s never been a part of the argument. Even in Welker’s case, I think there are just a handful of situations where he could go and put up comparable numbers. However, numbers don’t define skill sets.

And the skill set of Welker and receivers like him are a contributing factor. Being multiple isn’t just about maintaining a good run/pass balance. It’s about showing a multitude of concepts from a multitude of formations. In an era of run-first offenses and controlled passing games, slot receivers weren’t as valuable. Now, in an era of explosive proliferation for the passing game, slot receivers are vital. Coordinators want weapons. Outside weapons, inside weapons, backfield weapons, versatile weapons, etc. The complement of weapons completes the offense.

Current NFL concepts are an amalgam of old concepts with modern twists. The run-and-shoot didn’t originate in New England and the Patriots didn’t introduce the NFL to its concepts. But New England has integrated them – with Welker being the linchpin in the slot – to great success. It opens the offense to be more multiple. As an inside pivot, Welker allows the offense to adapt and bend based on what the defense is doing to them. That value supersedes statistics.
And yet apparently Belichick's idea of "weapons" is Welker, Danny Woodhead, Julian Edelman, and cutting and re-signing Donte Stallworth and Deion Branch about a dozen times.

The other teams who have the coaches and the quarterbacks to run schemes that inflate numbers like this are doing just fine, whether they have a star receiver they like to throw downfield to, or a similarly unimpressive receiving corps.

The Saints, for example, have Lance Moore, a journeyman at best, approaching 1,000 yards.

Welker may "allow" the Patriots to do things on offense, but my contention is Julian Edelman would "allow" the same things.

And here's what a fellow product of a system, Brett Perriman, had to say about Welker a few years ago:

"Wes Welker. With the system New England runs and Randy Moss alone drawing double and triple coverage, (Welker) runs 5-yard option routes. I can send a below-average player to do the same thing and you will get the same results."

Perriman may have been projecting a little, and the presence of Moss had nothing to do with anything other than possibly taking targets away from Welker, but this is a former NFL receiver (who caught 108 and 94 passes in a run-and-shoot) saying this.


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Years of football.

Yes, the Tampa 2 is the quintessential bend-but-don’t-break defense. It’s predicated on speed to the ball, being able to recover, bottling big gains, and forcing the offense to make stick throws into constricted windows.

Those are general defensive philosophies though. No defense wants to leave areas of the field uncontested. Within the ’98 Buccaneers defensive scheme, there were strong enough inside-out concepts to where I feel comfortable calling it an inside-out defense, too. Cornerbacks got inside position. Safeties ran lurk. Linebackers ran spill and plug. Outside containment was stressed before getting in their Go & Green packages.

The inside-out approach is conventional. The further the ball has to travel, the higher the variance.
The guys who've covered Welker inside over the years? Usually either a linebacker or a nickel or dime back. Sometimes teams just played zone.

And if he can't get open inside, no worries. They'll just throw him a bunch of screens and set up blocking for him. The only way teams can play that is by reading it. If the defense doesn't jump on it immediately, it's too late.


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Well, lining him up outside would be a gross misuse of his talents. What team would put an expensive asset in their worst position for success? That’s like signing an explosive tight end and then using him as an in-line blocker. Or a penetrating under tackle and using him as a nose tackle. Did their skill set/value of their skill set change? It didn’t. But their platform to show that skill set did.
If a receiver can't line up outside and beat anyone one-on-one, how good a receiver is he, really?

The attributes you and others seem to think are necessary for guys to play the slot really aren't necessary at all.

The vast majority of successful outside receivers (and I'm qualifying this) can play just fine in the slot.

Terrell Owens used to play plenty in the slot. He was never a great route runner...never known as a "cerebral" receiver. But he could sure outrun a linebacker on a drag or beat a nickel corner. When he did the latter, he usually did it on more of a vertical pattern.

What you are classifying as a "niche," I classify as a limitation. The slot isn't off-limits to outside receivers...even the taller ones who don't come out of their breaks that well. But split end is off-limits to Welker.


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You act like Wes Welker’s never caught a pass past the sticks. It’s not where he thrives, but he will get downfield. And he will find intermediate-to-deep holes if there, too. Does that make him a special downfield receiver? Nope. Not at all. But he’s not stuck in an underneath bubble where as soon as he leaves that bubble he forgets how to do simple things of a functional receiver.
Couldn't you say the same for Troy Brown?


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You’ve said – over and over – that what Welker does isn’t hard. That there’s an abundance of receivers that can step into New England’s offense and produce more. So when the Patriots sign a former Pro Bowl wide receiver, and he can’t learn their scheme, perhaps it’s harder than believed to be?
I don't think it's that Chad couldn't learn it. I think it's that he didn't want to learn it because his head wasn't in the game. The guy has demonstrated he's not exactly the most reliable person in the world.


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That’s an antiquated belief.

At the highest level, a lot of spatial awareness and methodical thought goes into the design of each offensive call and scheme. There’s not much separating NFL teams. The biggest separator is the details. Mike Singletary was an outstanding football player. Toughness personified. As a coach? Underwhelming. Football might not be a “nerd’s” profession, but as far as offensive coaches go, the best ones have bright minds and a penchant for active pattern recognition.
I was talking about the players (particularly, the skill position guys). You don't see teams worrying about receivers scoring low on the Wonderlic. It's when a quarterback does that it raises a giant red flag.

Even then, Dan Marino scored a 13 and went on to be one of the best ever. Most dedicated players should be able to learn any football scheme thrown their way.

Yes, coaching/scheming is one of the biggest things separating teams. How else can the Patriots keep doing it year after year, despite having lost nearly everyone from their 3 Super Bowl winning teams?


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You’re Wes Welker.

Your offense comes out in a one-back shotgun formation on third-and-fifteen. Twins to each side. You split to the tight side of the field and scan the defense from the slot. It’s a nickel sub-package. You’ve aligned against a disengaged corner. The free safety is eighteen yards downfield and aligned inside the hashmark. The strong safety is twelve yards downfield and aligned outside the opposite hashmark. You read the PSLB. He’s aligned on the inside hip of the offensive guard. Film preparation revealed strong tendencies to blitz from that position and rotate the SS to a robber zone. Your outside receiver is running a curl/hook option. The opposite inside receiver is running a crossing route. The other is a clear-out route. The ball is about to be snapped. The corner creeps up.

The ball is snapped. The corner opens his hips and shoulders from the quarterback. You peek to the safeties while releasing. The FS tightens to his hashmark. The SS backpedals and the PSLB isn’t blitzing. He’s dropping into a shallow zone.

You run what route? You run it at what depth? You run it at what angle?
First of all, if I'm Welker, chances are I'm not catching a first down if we're 15 yards away. I'm probably going to be tossed a screen pass and my job will be to see how many yards I can slip through for to set up a field goal or a punt. That should add a good 12 yards to my total for the day and help out my average.

But no matter.

It would depend on the play called. Welker's not out there just freelancing his routes. What are my, uh, options?

And where are we on the field? Are we close to field goal range? Are we near our own endzone?



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Nope. I’m not talking about busted coverages. I’ve seen Welker beat Revis on jerk routes before.

And the fact that Revis even aligns over Welker should speak to how defenses view Welker. Rex doesn’t waste Revis. He uses him as an eraser.
If Welker "beat" him for a 5 yard pass, I'm not really interested.

The only reason you'll ever see Revis on Welker now is Randy Moss is gone. When Moss was there, Revis was shadowing him.

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You’re not just suggesting poor evaluation then. You’re suggesting incompetence among five (or four) staffs. That’s even worse. If scheming underneath stuff from the slot is so simple, Edwards should’ve stuck sooner.
Edwards is just one example of a guy who could do what most smaller receivers to play in the NFL could do - the Wes Welker stuff. Those staffs were only incompetent in comparison to Belichick's staff, and it wasn't with their talent evaluation - it was with their schemes. Everyone is inferior to Belichick when it comes to X's and O's.


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Look, if manufacturing inside production from a wide receiver is the easiest offensive concept in the world, where are all of the slot receivers with over 100 receptions and 1,000 receiving yards? Tom Brady isn’t the only elite quarterback in the NFL. If a slot receiver’s value is tied to his quarterback, there should be more Wes Welker’s. Or is New England the sole team that’s smart enough to capitalize on an obvious loophole?
There are only so many receptions and yards to go around. Do you think the Packers and Saints are going, "gee, I sure wish we had a slot guy catching 100 for 1,000 for us. Our passing game just isn't good enough with this spread-it-around mentality we have?"

Do you think the Falcons are going, "if only we had a guy we could complete 120 screens and drags to, rather than torching teams with Julio Jones and Roddy White all over the field?"

A lot of teams consider themselves successful on offense and have no desire to be the Patriots.

And then some teams are just bad, and the coaches responsible for those bad teams are going to be fired. So yes, they're not smart enough to do what Belichick does...and they'll pay with their jobs.


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The three-cone drill is used to measure change of direction abilities and fluidness through a succession of cuts. I don’t think Welker is elusive, so his three-cone time is more or less irrelevant to me. I said he’s quick.
Change of direction/agility is part of quickness.

The other thing to look at would be his acceleration. Unfortunately, NFLDraftScout doesn't have his 10 yard time.

There's no denying Welker has short strides. Most smaller athletes do.


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The average distance from line of scrimmage surprises me. The slot concepts and design were still similar if not tweaked a bit. And the results still weren’t as good as Welker’s.
Obviously not if there's such a vast difference in where the passes were being caught.

Maybe if Branch had caught as many screen passes as Welker his numbers would have been more similar. As it was, he had 998 yards and 5 TDs.


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A reception is not the equivalent of a rushing attempt. Offensive game-calling deals with expected outcomes. The difference between 3 YPC and 11 YPC speaks for itself.
It's damn close when so many of the passes Welker catches are basically long handoffs.

Nonetheless, the point is that it's the yardage and touchdowns that have value, not the receptions themselves. A reception, in and of itself, is worthless, just like a carry.

If a player puts up 1500 yards and 15 touchdowns, it does not make it a better season if he did it on 120 catches than if he did it on 80.

I will take Jerry Rice 1986-1989 any day over Jerry Rice 1994.

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I’ve never listed Welker as a Hall of Famer. Or even an All-Pro talent. No one should. But substantiating skill sets based on electable credentials is meritless. Is there no middle ground between being a Hall of Famer and being a pedestrian receiver that’s slow and unexplosive and a talentless product? Because the fact is Welker falls somewhere within that spectrum.
There are fans all over the internet saying Welker should be in the Hall of Fame. That's why I call him "the most overrated player in the history of organized sports."

I remember the first time I saw him play in 2004 against the 49ers. I thought to myself, "hmmm, useful little punt returner. Maybe can also contribute as a #3 receiver." And that's exactly what he did in Miami. And that's exactly what I see him as today.

It wasn't until he succeeded the likes of Branch and Givens and Caldwell and Brown and Patten and Gaffney that he became a household name. All of a sudden, there was a team throwing to an obvious #3 receiver as though they were handing it off to a running back and daring teams to stop it.
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Old 12-21-2012, 05:39 AM    (permalink
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Fine. Earnest Byner accounted for 23.6% of the 1991 Redskins' offensive yardage. He wasn't great, either.

Eddie Kennison accounted for 16.4% of the 2004 Chiefs' offensive yardage. Clearly not a great wide receiver.
He listed 6 seasons for Wes Welker. With %'s between 15-23. You do realize the difference between doing something for 1 year and doing it for 6 years, right? We can list numerous 1 year wonders here. Your list will be filled with much better quality players if it contains those who have done it 5+ years, I imagine.
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Old 12-21-2012, 05:44 AM    (permalink
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There are fans all over the internet saying Welker should be in the Hall of Fame. That's why I call him "the most overrated player in the history of organized sports."
Now we are getting to the root of your problem. Let's keep this in house. Are/were there people on this forum saying this before this thread was created? I doubt it.
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