Entries in Mike Vrabel (5)

Friday
Oct052018

S13.337 - Titans vs Eagles & Titans @ Bills

Thursday
Sep202018

S13.335 - Titans vs Texans & Titans @ Jaguars

Thursday
Sep132018

S13.334 - Titans @ Dolphins & Titans vs Texans

Wednesday
Feb212018

How Did The Titans’ 2017 Rookie Receivers Stack Up?

 

Let’s be honest, if you are a Titans’ fan, you can’t help but be a little disappointed with the performance of the wide receivers. This was especially true of the much-hyped rookie receivers. Corey Davis was the first receiver taken in the 2017 NFL Draft and Taywan Taylor was the 8th receiver taken. However, Davis came into training camp with an injury, and Taylor was not fully utilized in the system.

 

I have to admit that on my list of top 5 WRs I wanted the Titans to draft, Davis was my choice of who I thought the Titans would choose. He has a very high up-side, but this numbers seemed lacking at first glance (includes playoffs):

 

 

Corey Davis

GP

GS

Rec

Yds

Avg

TD

Fum

13

11

43

473

11.0

2

1

 

Now for 3rd round pick Taylor, he started out looking like quite the find, but somewhere along the line he wasn’t part of the plan for the offense anymore. Here are his numbers for the season (including playoffs):

 

 

Taywan Taylor

GP

GS

Rec

Yds

Avg

TD

Fum

18

4

18

240

13.3

1

0

 

The 2017 NFL Draft was touted as having a plethora of hot WR prospects, but with the lack of production from the Titans young receivers, it made me wonder what production that other teams was able to get out of their rookies. So that led me on a quest to pit all the rookie receivers against each other. To be as fair as possible I decided to collect the numbers on “per games played” averages. Although some of these players weren’t able to get into many games, their numbers might match others with much more gametime. Below are the top 5 rookie receivers in each measurable (all stats are per game played including postseason):

 

Receptions/Games Played

 

Name

Team

Round Drafted

Rec/GP

Cooper Kupp

Rams

3

4.4

JuJu Smith-Schuster

Steelers

2

4.1

Corey Davis

Titans

1

3.3

Trent Taylor

49ers

5

2.9

Kenny Golladay

Lions

3

2.5

 

Yards/Games Played

 

Name

Team

Round Drafted

Yds/GP

JuJu Smith-Schuster

Steelers

2

61.5

Cooper Kupp

Rams

3

58.6

Kenny Golladay

Lions

3

43.4

DeDe Westbrook

Jaguars

4

42.4

Corey Davis

Titans

1

36.4

 

TDs/Games Played

 

Name

Team

Round Drafted

TDs/GP

JuJu Smith-Schuster

Steelers

2

0.5

Cooper Kupp

Rams

3

0.4

Kenny Golladay

Lions

3

0.3

Corey Davis

Titans

1

0.2

8 Players tied at 0.1TDs/GP including Taywan Taylor

 

Fumbles/Games Played

 

*25 players are tied at 0 fumbles

 

20+ Yard Catches/Games Played

 

Name

Team

Round Drafted

20+/GP

JuJu Smith-Schuster

Steelers

2

0.8

Cooper Kupp

Rams

3

0.8

DeDe Westbrook

Jaguars

4

0.8

Kenny Golladay

Lions

3

0.7

Corey Davis (tie)

Titans

1

0.3

Chris Godwin (tie)

Buccaneers

3

0.3

 

40+ Yard Catches/Games Played

 

Name

Team

Round Drafted

40+/GP

Kenny Golladay

Lions

3

0.5

JuJu Smith-Schuster

Steelers

2

0.4

5 players tied at 0.1 40+/GP

 

1st Down Receptions/Games Played

 

Name

Team

Round Drafted

1st/GP

Cooper Kupp

Rams

3

2.8

JuJu Smith-Schuster

Steelers

2

2.6

DeDe Westbrook

Jaguars

4

2.0

Trent Taylor

49ers

5

1.8

Corey Davis (tie)

Titans

1

1.6

Chris Godwin (tie)

Buccaneers

3

1.6

 

As these stats indicate, Corey Davis was near the top in almost every category. Although he was the first receiver drafted and should have dominated the numbers, he still put forth a good effort in an offense that wasn’t friendly to the passing game. Something else that is very clear in these numbers, the other first round receivers were nowhere to be found. Mike Williams had miniscule numbers, and John Ross didn’t have any receiving numbers at all. So, for what it’s worth, Davis won the battle for the 1st round.

 

The obvious winners in this rookie class were Cooper Kupp and JuJu Smith-Schuster. Both put up numbers that proved they were a significant part of their respective teams offensive plan. However, with the late surge put on by Davis, it is obvious that he will be a force next season.

 

The obvious losers were the Bengals and Chargers. Both teams picked players that were expected to contribute in a major way right from the start, but neither team got much from their pick.

 

I believe the real proof of what the Titans have at WR with these two picks will be in the 2018 season. Corey Davis went from missing the entire preseason, but coming into the first game against the Raiders with 6 catches for 69 yards. However, after that he went out in the Jacksonville game and didn’t return until 7 weeks later. His return sputtered along until the last playoff game where he finally found the end zone for the first (and second) time. The only issue (other than his health) that the team and fanbase want answered is whether he can be a real deep threat. As of yet he hasn’t shown the speed we hoped for.

 

As far as Taywan Taylor, he may have shown us that he is potentially the real deep threat. He reminds me somewhat of Kendall Wright. When the ball is in his hand, he is a very dynamic player. He wants the ball, but might thrive more in the running game with sweeps and trick plays than in the passing game. Right now I see him as a true 4th receiver and the only way he could move up is if the Titans released players ahead of him.

 

To sum up the 2017 draft of receivers, the Titans didn’t hit a homerun yet. Other than early injuries, we don’t know why the previous offensive staff didn’t use the very weapons that were given to them. Now we have to wait to see how Head Coach Mike Vrabel and Offensive Coordinator Matt LaFleur look upon these weapons. Do they see them as inadequate and will ask for replacements, or will they realize that these players have been truly underused/misused?

 

By Michael Hopkins 

Thursday
Jan252018

323 - Welcome To Our New Coaching Overlords