Critiquing the B/R NFL 1000 Project: Wide Receivers and Safeties

Bloggers, media and sport fans used to heap scorn on Bleacher Report, mainly due to some questionable user-generated content that damaged the site’s reputation in its infancy. However, since their big money deal with Turner 18 months ago, they’ve added some talented and respected names as featured writers and a great deal of their content is now well worth checking out.

One of the featured writers they added to their roster was draft scouting guru and former TJB Podcast guest Matt Miller, who – along with several other film junkies – is spearheading the B/R NFL 1000 project, where they attempt to rank the NFL’s top 1,000 players. The project is now into its third year and they’ve just started releasing this year’s results. For more on how the project works go here.

In our fifth installment, we look at their rankings for the wide receiver and safety positions. To look back at the previous updates go here, here, here and here.

For the receivers, they rank Stephen Hill in 98th place, David Nelson in 67th place and Jeremy Kerley in 61st place. Also of interest, Santonio Holmes is 79th, Eric Decker is 19th and DeSean Jackson is 20th. In terms of safeties, Dawan Landry is 39th and Antonio Allen 44th. Ed Reed is 56th. Remember, this is based on 2013 as a whole and is not supposed to take into account prior achievements or potential for growth.

Here’s what they said about Reed:

It’s somewhat sad to watch a Hall of Fame player fall so far. Reed can’t cover enough ground to be a free safety anymore. That was repeatedly exposed in 2013, both in Houston and in New York … Reed decided to come back after the Baltimore Ravens’ Super Bowl victory in 2012, but he doesn’t seem capable of competing at this level anymore.

Read Bent’s thoughts after the jump.

Bent, TheJetsBlog.com

I’m a big Ed Reed fan so it’s disappointing to see him criticized like this. Needless to say, I don’t agree with their assessment. When the Jets signed Reed, I broke down his performances in detail for this site (here) and while Reed did make some mistakes, I disagreed with the prevailing notion that he was washed-up and completely finished. Sure enough, he performed well for the Jets after some initial struggles, grading out positively as a Jet per PFF, intercepting three passes and making significant unheralded contributions to rookie Dee Milliner’s late season improvements.

As Miller and his colleagues suggest, Landry and Allen are two middle-of-the-pack safeties with Allen hopefully primed to continue delivering on the promise he showed in 2013. I still think bringing back Reed would give the Jets a solid three man rotation without needing to invest big salaries or high draft picks. Hopefully that group would benefit from playing another season together and Allen can establish himself as a core starter for the next few years.

In terms of the receiver group, the rankings give an interesting perspective on the depth of the Jets receiving corps now that they’ve adding Decker to the mix. While you can nitpick some of their analysis (I’m not sure why they’re so negative about Kerley’s route running and speed), it’s probably fair to suggest that the Jets’ top four receivers last year would all have been the second or third option on most NFL teams and the rankings reflect this.

Some people have suggested that Miller is biased against the Jets, so it’s good to get his take on Decker, who would obviously have been evaluated as a Bronco. Interestingly, Decker gets a perfect score for his route running. It doesn’t sound like “nobody was open” is an excuse whoever quarterbacks the Jets next season will get to use.

We’ll continue to keep an eye on this project over the offseason.




99 comments
Kirk Michael
Kirk Michael

If we allow the Pats to get Jackson were pathetic. I dnt want to hear about MJD. I want Desean. Give up a 2 n 4th this yr along with another 3rd next yr. We need him to complete this offense and in the 1st get ebron or amaro. Our offense is set. Defense we have to pick from whats left for a corner spot n safety. I think Asante should be signed as a safety, being the best ball hawking corner in the past ten years we can put him at safety next to landry. Hes also a great friend of Jackson. If Jackson is cut n we have vick and Asante signed that would go a long way. And at corner get a vet that can handle a full season.

NYCPEinGermany
NYCPEinGermany

Really excited for them to sign Reed back. Even if they draft another safety, what better teacher is there? 

rrjm
rrjm

apparently Jackson and Chip Kelly spoke today and sounds like hes staying in Philly :(

Hoz
Hoz

so Desean figured that no one will pay him his current salary if released so he decided to get his act together, what a clown.

metjetnet
metjetnet

(miketaliaferro) Hmmm. I wonder if Woody/Idzik have hired a PI to check into the personal/criminal background of one DeSean Jackson. Your basic "Pain in the A__" aspect we can handle; hell, that's half a locker room these days. What caught me eye was this report on his burglary at his home. Real? Fake? Just with whom is this rich, arrogant sports star involved off the field? The Jets can't risk having ANOTHER key player spending more time in court than in camp... This story raises all manner of flags for me.

http://www.philly.com/philly/hp/news_update/252083741.html

1969JAN12th
1969JAN12th

Commentary on Stephen Hill is pretty sad implying he has bad hands and runs bad routes. If you consider the 3 important facets of WRs as speed, hands, and route running, Hill gets a failing grade on two out of three. Unless, Hill has a big improvement in training camp, I can see him being released. 

Marcus Armstrong
Marcus Armstrong

@jaygo  They were filming shots of RCMH while I was there for the draft last year. I might be in it!

juunit
juunit

@jaygo  

No clue. It's hard to give an opinion on a movie before people have really seen it. The best I can tell you is that the director did Ghostbusters. 

bradysucks
bradysucks

I hear that Joeyboy wrote the script. Apparently the film is about a GM and coach trying to find "the pieces" necessary to win a championship.....Their goal is to make a truly horrendous QB known for dating actresses and supermodels look less than terrible and still win games... The movie was shot at USC

Apparently it's a pretty good movie...

Hoz
Hoz

@rrjm  Sorces said he called a couple of his teamates & said he was staying, its time for Idzik to move on

williamg1
williamg1

@rrjm  Or, they could be trying to get teams to offer draft picks, rather than waiting to scoop him up after he's released. 


Its in the Eagles interest to make it seem like Desean will NOT be cut. And, its in Desean's interest to avoid getting cut. 

williamg1
williamg1

@Hoz  He seems to have a lot of money problems. 

Disgruntled Jets Fan
Disgruntled Jets Fan

@metjetnet well, to be fair, smart criminals often target rich athletes who are often not very smart about securing their property.

williamg1
williamg1

@metjetnet  What is being alleged? Filed false police report to college insurance or something?

levi
levi

@1969JAN12th  Man I had high hopes for the guy when he came out and lit it up against Buffalo. But he has been disappointing. It is hard to say where he would be without the injuries and with a decent QB though. I bet Vick wont be afraid to launch some deep ones his way.

bradysucks
bradysucks

The Eagles know this is a deep draft at WR. They can't be happy about paying 10 million a year to a problem child when they can draft a guy like Brandin Cooks and pay him nothing.....

I like Jackson as a WR but 10 million a year is a bundle for a WR

bobbyj
bobbyj

Your right, Geno had stunted/retarded the growth of Hill. Why in the world would we go get Jackson w/Geno won't throw go routes to Hill? To pay a malcontent 10 mil for the same results. Levi I saw a play at the end of a game, garbage time, Hill was sprinting towards the end zone, there wasn't a defender w/in 15 yards of Hill. Instead of tossing a TD that I could have threw, Geno threw into triple coverage for an INT...please do not bring Jackson to this team

gbrownn
gbrownn

@1969JAN12th  I can see him definetely being released if we bring 2 more wide receivers, I could see him MAYBE sticking around if we bring one more 1.  But yeah I agree, bad hands and routes. Wide Reciever 101. It's his 3rd year in the NFL and thats where we are at with him. 

bradysucks
bradysucks

I'd love Desean on the Jets but think 10 million is a lot to pay

williamg1
williamg1

@bradysucks  I've got a soft spot for Desean because I was living in Long Beach during the time he was playing in high school. His high school teammates were players like Marcedes Lewis, Winston Justice, Darnell Bing and Hershel Dennis. Just a sick team. 

gbrownn
gbrownn

@bobbyj So it's Geno's fault Hill struggles with catching the ball cleanly, being physical off the line, running crisp routes, and making people miss? I agree that MAYBE there was a time here and there Hill was open. But that doesn't change his own skillset. I think Geno and Mark just didn't trust Hill to come down with the catch. They see the guy practice everyday they know what he can do ya know.

levi
levi

@gbrownn  He has a lot to prove for sure. Im just pointing out that his QB hasnt helped him to become the deep threat he was drafted to be. You have to hit a deep threat in stride and there is a lot more room for failure if the ball isnt thrown on target with any WR.

gbrownn
gbrownn

I agree Levi, thats where he would be at his best. Whenever he doesn't have to adjust to the ball. But is that really what you want from your receiver? One that can only be effective if the ball is perfect and hit him in stride?

levi
levi

@gbrownn  If someone can hit Hill in stride that is where he could shine. Sanchez could never do it and I think Geno got scared of throwing pics. Thats where he will get his YAC. I dont think he will ever be the guy out there juking people out of their shoes.

gbrownn
gbrownn

@Beamen321 And high pointing is one of those things thats difficult to coach a guy up in. It's one of those natural skills. The guys has it or he doesn't. Kinda like making people miss in the open field. Which I haven't really seen Hill do much of either.

Bytor
Bytor

@gbrownn  Not a one to one comparison. The comparison is their rawness. Hill has made some plays as well. It's too bad he got injured and his QB situations have been dismal.


I really think 10 pounds of muscle would do him a world of good without losing too much speed. Somebody get that man a protein shake!

joemustgo
joemustgo

@gbrownn  He also has the Tanny taint, so he's probably in Idzik's cross-hairs.

Beamen321
Beamen321

@williamg1 @gbrownn  If I had to make a comparison, I would say DHB. Tall guy with electric speed that just can't put it all together.

williamg1
williamg1

@Beamen321 @gbrownn  I would say Hill's biggest problem is he doesn't attack the ball in the air. He expects every 40 yard pass to turn into a body catch. I wish he would watch tape of receivers attacking the ball in the air. 

Beamen321
Beamen321

@gbrownn  More to the fact that WRs make or break year is their 3rd season. DT is MUCH more physical than Hill. Recently, I went back and looked at Hill's combine on youtube and I was shocked by how much bigger he looked in his legs. I think the biggest thing with Hill is that he can't say healthy and he's terrible once he's banged up. If you look at it he is actually fairly productive early in the season and then it just falls off a cliff.

williamg1
williamg1

@gbrownn  Hill reminds me more of a faster Chaz Schilens than D. Thomas. 

gbrownn
gbrownn

@williamg1 It would be amazing if he turned into the big deep threat we drafted him to be. But like you, I don't see it happening

gbrownn
gbrownn

@Bytor  Why do you guys continue to use Demayrious as Hill's measuring stick though. Just because they went to the same college?  They are not similar players at all. Theyre skill sets couldnt be more different Theyre big and they are fast. Thats about it. Demayrious is so much more physical and one of the best when the ball is in his hands. Hill has showed nothing for people to continue to compare him to DT. Even when DT was putting up pedestrian stats. He still MADE PLAYS. Remember when he was a rookie and he won that jump ball on Revis? Stephen hill hasn't shown anything like that to me ever.

Bytor
Bytor

@Beamen321 @Marcus Armstrong @gbrownn  Thomas had very pedestrian stats his first two years. Same for Hill. Not saying he'll make the jump but he's only 22 years old. Can't cut a guy like that. I still maintain that Hill should put on 10 pounds. he'd still be beastly fast but more durable.

Beamen321
Beamen321

@Marcus Armstrong @gbrownn  Yea, everyone forgets when Demaryius was a injury prone 1st round "bust" who was a reach pick by McDaniels. Not saying it's going to happen for Hill but it could.

Beamen321
Beamen321

@williamg1 @gbrownn  Yea, that would be awesome. I do think he isn't AS bad as he seems. He does get behind the defense but hasn't had a QB that is willing to force the ball down the field or an OLine that is able to protect long enough to get those deep looks.

Marcus Armstrong
Marcus Armstrong

@gbrownn  It was the same deal with Demaryius. Just sayin'. They're awfully glad they didn't cut him.

williamg1
williamg1

@gbrownn Wouldn't it be great if something clicks in Hill, and he makes huge strides? 


I just don't have much faith that it happens.