I Believe in Davante Adams

2015 was a lost year for the Packers' offense.  After being the finest offense in the league in 2014, just as the 2015 version of Dom Capers' defense found its footing, the offense became lost.  Green Bay finished 21st in weighted DVOA (according to FootballOutsiders) on offense.  No player carried the burden of these failures more than Packers wide receiver Davante Adams.

Adams was thrust into the number one outside receiver role after Jordy Nelson was lost for the season in a presesason contest against the Steelers.  Expectations soared after a promising end to his 2015 season, both from a fantasy football perspective and for his potential impact on the 2016 season.  He was coined "the offseason MVP".  The Packers were thought to be just good enough, thanks to Eddie Lacy, Randall Cobb, and the newly signed James Jones to feature Davante Adams as their #1.  He is, after all, a 2nd round pick wide receiver by Ted Thompson.  

Things did not go well.  Adams finished with 50 receptions and 483 yards.  He also dropped between six and ten passes (depending on how tough of a grader you are) and brought in 53% of the passes thrown his way.  According to FO, Adams ranked 86th of the 87 wide receivers that were targeted more than 50 times a season ago.  It was bad.  Adams has admitted as such, Rodgers and McCarthy admitted than naming an offseason MVP was a mistake they weren't going to make again, which is also basically admitting that Adams was bad, too.  

The fans turned on him, and haven't really come around, either.  Sweeping statements have become very popular.  "Davante Adams is not a good player".  That seems to be ther most popular one.  Despite his draft cost being a mid-to-late second round selection, Adams is being "mock-replaced" via the next few drafts all the time.  Fans and analysts are viewing Adams as a sunken cost.  

Here's an unpopular opinion: I still believe in Davante Adams.  Why?  Let me explain:

1.  Something was wrong with Aaron Rodgers this season, too.  Catch rate.  The biggest internet fight that I got into about Davante Adams centered around catch rate.  It was almost as though my "combatant", didn't have access to other statistics, or that because catch rate is an under-the-radar metric, that using it made him sound smarter.  The problem with that is that catch rate, like every other statistic known to man doesn't tell the whole story.  Dez Bryant's catch rate was 47%.  Is Adams better than Dez Bryant? No.  By 11%? Hell no.  Adams had a higher catch rate than Mike Evans, Allen Robinson, Markus Wheaton and Amari Cooper, too.  All are young, promising receivers.  

Adams wasn't great, but Rodgers wasn't great either.  FO ranked Rodgers 17th in DYAR a season ago.  His 31 to 8 INT to TD ratio may have looked good, but his 60% completion percentage and 6.7 YPA are mediocre by NFL standards, and abysmal by Rodgers' standards.  It's not like he hasn't had good seasons after losing a main weapon, either.  Rodgers has produced multiple productive seasons despite losing main targets like Jermichael Finley and Greg Jennings for long periods of time.  He just wasn't right.

The idea behind the big criticism of Adams only being able to catch 57% of his targets despite playing with an elite quarterback and running short-to-intermediate routes would mean a lot more if said quarterback was completing long passes (he wasn't) or a high percentage of his throws (he wasn't doing that either).  If Rodgers plays better, I'm willing to bet that Adams will play better, too.

2.  Adams was hurt. I know it sounds like an excuse, but it's reality. Adams hurt his ankle in the week two victory over the Seahawks, and was never the same.  He shouldn't have played against the Chiefs and he was never close to 100% by the end of the season.  He did get better, and it showed with decent performances against the Vikings in week 17 and Washington in the first game of the playoffs.

We'll never know how affected Adams was by his injury, but it's clear that he wasn't at 100%.  He's not trying to make excuses for his performance, but his struggle to stay healthy has to be mentioned.  Ankle injuries limit an athlete's explosive movements, and Adams is a player without elite long speed that uses his agility and leaping ability to make plays.  Without healthy ankles, his game is affected very negatively.

3.  The Packers offense is complicated, and second year players probably shouldn't be the number one option.  

Greg Jennings: 

Year one: 45/632

Year two: 53/920

Year three: 80/1292

Jordy Nelson: 

Year one: 33/366

Year two: 22/320

Year three: 45/582

Randall Cobb: 

Year one: 25/375

Year two: 80/954

Year three: 31/433

James Jones:

Year one: 47/676

Year two: 20/274

Year three: 32/440

What do you see there? You see four receivers drafted by Ted Thompson who have unquestionably had successful NFL careers.  You also see one 1000+ yards season.  You see two seasons over 700 yards.  This is a difficult offense to understand from the receiver position and even good players take time to develop a rapport with the playbook and a rapport with the quarterback.  The expectations for Adams were unfair.

I expect a bounce-back season for Adams, should he and the rest of the receiving corps stay healthy.  I believe in his talent and Ted Thompson's evaluation of his talent.  I believe in Davante Adams. 

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Ross Uglem is a staff writer for Cheesehead TV. He can be found on Twitter @RossUglem 

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Comments (70)

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Teflon Ted's picture

June 13, 2016 at 03:52 pm

The question to me is does Davante Adams believe in Davante Adams. I have my doubts at this point. He seemed to have lost everything last year. Right now all I see in him is another Robert Ferguson.

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Tundraboy's picture

June 13, 2016 at 08:01 pm

Ferguson was better so far.

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Teflon Ted's picture

June 13, 2016 at 08:33 pm

I concur!! Last year was a disaster for Patch "I can't catch" Adams. If he redeems himself I'll call him by his real name again.

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Allan Murphy's picture

June 14, 2016 at 03:16 pm

Vary good point .

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Ross Uglem's picture

October 21, 2016 at 12:28 pm

Oh yeah?

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Ross Uglem's picture

December 12, 2016 at 10:35 pm

Oh yeah, oh yeah?

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RCPackerFan's picture

June 13, 2016 at 04:09 pm

I am one that believes in Adams.

I feel his biggest thing that affected him was his injury. He wasn't able to do the things he wanted to do and it affected his game mentally and physically.

Also the injury to Nelson affected him. He felt he had to do more to make up for the loss.

The last 2 games that Adams played in he started to finally make the plays we expected him to. Until he got injured against Washington he was really starting to come on.

I really think Adams is going to have a bigger year then what most think. Getting a healthy Nelson, Cobb and Adams back will make a huge difference.
With Nelson that means that Adams will be lined up against the opposing teams 3rd CB vs 2nd more often each week.
I think the area to really watch Adams is in the redzone. I think he will become the Jones of the WR's this coming year. Catching a lot of TD's.

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Handsback's picture

June 13, 2016 at 05:12 pm

DA will be the player towards the end of 2014 vs. last year's 2015 version. Young guys need patience and to stay healthy. Last year the only healthy WR was Janis. I think Jones was hurt somewhere along the way and/or teams figured out how to guard him. By the way when you only have one guy that's 100%....why aren't you playing him and making him learn the system. My biggest question for last year. It's not that I'm a Janis backer, I just don't see how you can't play him when it's obvious that you have nobody else to throw into the cauldron.
Rodgers had a bad year by his standards and the receivers share that blame as far as I'm concerned.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

June 14, 2016 at 12:56 am

"With Nelson that means that Adams will be lined up against the opposing teams 3rd CB vs 2nd more often each week."

This sums up my opinion on Adams: he does everything well except get open. It also means that his regular season stats will be okay if he has a legitimate #1 and #2 ahead of him, but he is likely to fare worse in the playoffs.

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The TKstinator's picture

June 13, 2016 at 04:17 pm

It doesn't matter what I think of him. If he comes back healthy and productive, great! If not, GB certainly has other options.

The other issue that arises after reading this about the complicated offense and how it takes time to get acclimated and contribute is, how much can we expect from Jared Cook this year? Sounds like a lot of fans have sky high expectations for him and might be disappointed.

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dobber's picture

June 14, 2016 at 03:13 pm

"1 - No matter how bad he is, Adams is going to be jammed onto the roster (and into the lineup)."

I think you are correct in the bottom line here: barring injury or some kind of massive blunder with the law, Adams is going to be on the 53 in September and he's going to be playing significant snaps unless/until he plays himself out of them. Some would argue that he did that last season, but I believe he'll start TC in that #3 role (with Montgomery coming off injury, who else is really going to challenge him from the outset?) and play limited snaps in preseason game to avoid injury. He's not likely to lose that #3 role in TC.

The key question of the article is: do you think Adams has what it takes to rebound from 2015? The prevailing thought here appears to be no, although Ross and others still stand up for the guy. Adams apparently added strength in the off-season...
http://www.packers.com/news-and-events/article-player-feature/article-1/...
...that doesn't sound like a guy cruising on his rookie paycheck as finwiz implied below. Give him the benefit of the doubt, but expect him to be on a short leash if someone else is outplaying him.

Edit--> Sorry, that was stockholder's comment, not finwiz.

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Spud Rapids's picture

June 15, 2016 at 02:41 pm

Is anyone on this roster good in your eyes? Hell you've called for Rodgers to be traded multiple times

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Nerd's picture

June 13, 2016 at 04:45 pm

Once we lost Montgomery, it was a different offense.

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jeremyjjbrown's picture

June 13, 2016 at 09:34 pm

Losing Montgomery didn't help but the real killer was that Denver showed the whole league how to defend the Packers Isolation Routes and it took 2 months for McCarthy to take back control and use another scheme that would beat what they where seeing. It was an epic failure in game planing by the Packers Offensive Coaching staff. Additionally, Rodgers hurt his knee and was arm throwing the football and missing a lot of throws he would normally make.

Davante Adams will be ok, probubly not great but at least servicable.

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gr7070's picture

June 14, 2016 at 12:27 am

McCarthy took over after week 13. They were the 10th ranked O by DVOA.

By week 17 they were 21st.

Because of the DVOA system that's looks worse than it is.

*At best*, though, McCarthy did nothing to help. At best.

He quadrupled the touches of the least athletic player on the team and one of the offenses last effective. Unreal.

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ray nichkee's picture

June 14, 2016 at 10:01 am

I thought McCarthy took over in 2006.

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dobber's picture

June 14, 2016 at 10:19 am

"the real killer was that Denver showed the whole league how to defend the Packers Isolation Routes"

Everyone already knew what had to happen to shut down the Packer passing game thanks to Seattle, SF, and Buffalo in 2013-14. Denver just showed how easily and thoroughly it could be done against the Packers depleted WR corps and OL line. The bottom line is that few teams had the combination of DBs and pass rush prior to 2015 to play that way to make it work enough over 60 minutes to win a game.

Plenty of questions going into 2016 regarding the Packers ability to beat teams that want to play that way. Can the OL protect ARod enough and direct pass rush enough to allow him to improvise and create? Can the return of Nelson and addition of Cook threaten opposing defenses enough to open up the underneath stuff? Will the run game do enough to force defenses to choose how they scheme personnel to try to slow down the offense?

While this article is focused on Davante Adams and what he can do moving forward, I think he's a minor playerl in the grand scheme of Packer success for 2016.

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Tundraboy's picture

June 14, 2016 at 04:46 pm

, "While this article is focused on Davante Adams and what he can do moving forward, I think he's a minor playerl in the grand scheme of Packer success for 2016."

Could not agree more. So much else has to fall in place and we do not need him to be even good, to win.

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Teflon Ted's picture

June 13, 2016 at 06:16 pm

If he doesn't get his shit in gear this season he'll be referred to as Patch Adams because he'll be only a short time band-aid until someone competent comes along.

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Branden Burke's picture

June 13, 2016 at 08:54 pm

I've said it once, and I will say it again. There is nothing wrong with Adams. I called it when people were saying Rodgers was a bust his 2nd and 3rd year in the NFL. I called out AJ hawk as not being the stud he was tabbed to be right away before most people started bashing on him, and I'm calling this. It's not some ignorant support that I'm just throwing out.

NFL players don't start calling other players stars in this league for no reason. Rodgers said Adams was the MVP and was going to be a star last training camp. James Jones said Adams was going to be a superstar. I'm not going that far, but he will be a darn good player in this league. And I'm calling it now. They aren't saying Janis is going to be a star. We all see what Janis looks capable of, but we don't see it all day every day like they do. Nobody on that team talks about Janis or Montgomery like that, as much as I want to see them be that player. But three people have voiced how good Adams is, and two have said he is a star. The only thing stopping Adams is between his shoulders. And anyone saying his 4.56 is too slow, I believe Dez Bryant and Jody Nelson both ran 4.51

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Branden Burke's picture

June 13, 2016 at 09:38 pm

How did jerry rice look starting out? Did you say cheese whiz, because that would be right. BUT he turned out ok.

Did you say slow? I believe Fitzgerald ran a 4.63, boldin a 4.71, Jerry rice a 4.71, AJ green, Dez bryant, Jordyn nelson, among many many other greats were all in the 4.5s with Adams. Let the kid be. I will let you know when you need to worry. He is fine. Too many people getting worked up way too fast. You guys sound like bear fans. R E L A X

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Finwiz's picture

June 13, 2016 at 10:08 pm

Larry Fitz is not a 4.6 and Devonte should never be used in any sort of comparison with any of those receivers.

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Branden Burke's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:25 am

You're right. He was a 4.63. Google it

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Branden Burke's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:45 am

And the guy I wanted GB to draft, Jarvis landry, was a 4.77. And he is a beast. My point isn't saying Adams is going to be a stud. 40 times dont make a wide receiver. My point is it is obvious last year wasn't a good year for him or anybody on offense for that matter. He was thrown into the #1 role and he clearly wasn't ready or potentially just doesn't belong. But its not time to label him yet. The players and coaches clearly think there is much more to him than we do. They know more than we do. So unless he is a total head case and plays his way out of the NFL, then he will show what the coaches and the best QB in the NFL see. They called him a star. Who has Rodgers called a star before?

Randall Cobb didn't help anybody either. He should be getting more heat than he has. Cobb has been called out two times by defenders in his career that I can recall before last year, and was shut down both times. He should have been the one to step up when Jordy went down. But for an entire year he didnt. It's clear defenders don't respect him. He got called out twice and they were right. And when he was the only guy with any real experience on the team, he should have looked like it. But he was mostly invisible. There were play calls the Packers could have called to help him, but it was clear he didn't have what it took to rise to the occasion.

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Finwiz's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:47 am

Name: *Larry Fitzgerald
College: Pittsburgh Number: 1
Height: 6-3 Weight: 225
Position: WR Pos2:
Class/Draft Year: So/2004
40 Low: 4.38 40 Time: 4.48 40 High: 4.59
Projected Round: 1 Stock:
Rated number 2 out of 156 WR's / 1152 TOTAL

You are pretty much an idjut, aren't you? A high time of 4.59, and you quote 4.6 to support your point. I see average of 4.48, so I call him a 4.4.
He's certainly a 4.4 more often than a 4.6.

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Branden Burke's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:59 am

http://corner.bigblueinteractive.com/index.php?mode=2&thread=325810

I'm not just an idjut. You Google Larry Fitzgerald 40, and Google gives you a big 4.63. And I read a previous article about Fitzgerald that also said 4.63. And the article above explains it. Don't go calling people Idjuts just because.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

June 14, 2016 at 01:38 am

No YAC @Cow

https://youtu.be/KTYx1sWPgaY?t=13m56s

This guy healthy is going to be a problem for Defenses this upcoming season.

https://youtu.be/85P8umw03MI?t=7m56s

The 50/50's

https://youtu.be/85P8umw03MI?t=12m44s

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Finwiz's picture

June 13, 2016 at 10:07 pm

Devonte's one of those guys that looks great in the uni, great on paper and in practice, but he plays tight...doesn't play big. Some call guys like this, "chokers". I was very unimpressed with him last year when the big lights came on. Dropped way too many easy balls, and didn't show the ability to separate and make the big play. If Janis is anywhere near close in preseason performance and knowledge of the offense, he should get the 3rd receiver spot over 17. Sorry, I've seen enough. You have to earn it.

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Bearmeat's picture

June 13, 2016 at 10:15 pm

I haven't seen anyone commenting on the fact that there was no WR coach last year on GBs staff. For young players (such as Adams, Monty, Janis and Abby) that is going to make a HUGE difference!

I expect the Packers WRs to be better this year with Nelson at the top of the depth chart. And also with a healthy unit. BUT I also expect them to be better route runners, better blockers and catch the football better.

That alone should help Adams improve in 2016.

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NickPerry's picture

June 14, 2016 at 06:05 am

Thanks Bearmeat, I've been saying that the entire offseason and like DPF has pointed out Rodgers didn't have his "Own QB Coach" either, obviously it hurt their performance in some ways. If you don't want to look at just at Adams OR Rodgers stats then look at Cobb's. Rodgers was off last year, routes he normally hit in his sleep he missed by 5 yards on a regular basis. I think we'll see the Packers offense we're used to seeing in 2016 only WITH a TE!

It was said this was something no other team had tried to do before McCarthy tried it, combining the QB and WR position coaches into one. MM was also VERY quick to admit it was a mistake which he did right after the season ended. All players need coaching, even the great ones. But to EXPECT a bunch of 2nd year WR's to excell at their crafts without a dedicated coach is nuts. Especially in an offense like the Packers.

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Bearmeat's picture

June 14, 2016 at 11:13 am

Thanks NP and DPF.

BTW, I'm seriously wondering HOW my comment (which is in no way controversial) managed to get FIVE downvotes??

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dobber's picture

June 14, 2016 at 11:16 am

I don't see anything in your comment that would garner that many downvotes, but if you read through this thread and discussion, the downvotes are rampant. I think Davante Adams must be that polarizing....

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Tundraboy's picture

June 14, 2016 at 04:54 pm

Me either. I gave an up vote to bring some reason to the comments. But I'll probably get some down votes for saying that. Lol

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Bearmeat's picture

June 14, 2016 at 05:51 pm

I gave you one. Because all the cool kids are doin it. ;)

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NickPerry's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:58 pm

No worries Bearmeat, I upvoted you as well. I just can't understand why people are so quick to just toss this kid to the side and call him a bust. I'm going to copy and paste the link and when Adams has a 50 plus catches, 800 plus yards, and 7 plus TD's see just how many are praising Adams and saying "I knew he had it in him"!

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

June 15, 2016 at 12:44 am

Sorry, Bearmeat, I gave you one of those five thumbs down. Why? Because while it probably will help some, I don't agree that having a dedicated WR coach is going to effect miracles. I recognize I am probably in the minority, but I don't think these guys are necessarily going to run better routes, block better, or run the correct route or adjustment automatically. It probably depends on how good the WR coach actually is.

What GB really needs are more coaches and more coaches with long titles. There should be a TE/receiving coach, a TE/run blocking coach, a TE/pass blocking coach. There should be a WR/route running coach, a WR/hands coach, and a WR/blocking coach. We could have several QB coaches, too. Then, we could have an Aerial Liason Assistant Head Coach (how about Clements? He needs a title).

I don't mean to be snarky at you, Bearmeat (this is a favorite topic for NP as well). I generally agree with you (and NP, for that matter). It just seems like the dedicated coach is being accepted as a panacea. Sure, it might help some.

Actually, having the QBs and the WRs in the same room sometimes made a lot of sense. I am not so sure the idea is bad, just the execution. I think MM giving up play-calling duties might have been a good idea, but I immediately opposed giving them to Clements. Good idea if you've got someone else who actually knows how to call the plays, but Clements = bad execution.

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NickPerry's picture

June 15, 2016 at 05:54 am

I'm not so sure Cow...maybe you're right. Or maybe he's nothing more than a possession receiver which isn't a bad thing either. Hell James Jones made a decent living doing just that and helped them win a SB. I think lot of people including yourself will be eating crow by seasons end. Should be fun.

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LeagueObsrvr's picture

June 13, 2016 at 10:58 pm

I haven't lost faith in Adams. He just needs to tap into whatever it was that made him such a reception machine in college. I believe he can get it turned around again.

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stockholder's picture

June 14, 2016 at 12:16 am

In the 2014 draft Adams was selected with the 53rd pick. I ask why every time he drops a Ball! He was considered a 3rd to 5th round pick by many scouts. It made sense, every-time I saw him stop on the field. Why did many doubters make him a star before he put on the uniform. Because he catches the ball only behind the line of scrimmage. Adams is nothing more than a promotional chess piece now. I've been banned from Football futures,and Acme packing co, because I'm to hurt full in my criticism and words of Adams. In two years I still have not seen him catch a ball over the middle above his shoulders? How could any coach help that? Why blame A-rod? We have to Blame TT. He selected him. And he won't get cut! The biggest thing A-rod needs are fearless WRs that can catch. Adams has not shown us that! He never will. He's got his life changing money, and the team got screwed. Adams has gotten faster and thats the tease. His jump is isolated. For better or worse were stuck with him. My hope this year is A-rod does not try to throw to him to make a point, or be part of the promotional bias.

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marpag1's picture

June 14, 2016 at 02:14 am

Well, OK, I get it. But in the end this is football and not religion, so it doesn't really matter what anyone "believes" about Davante Adams. Either he will DO it and we will see it, or he will not do it.

I do think that Davante had some "head problems" last year. Confidence is such an important part of almost every sport, and there is very little "science" behind it. And the only thing that can cure it is winning and personal success.

Anybody who watched with amazement - as I did - the painfully embarrassing example of Chuck Knoblauch (or others like him) understands the frustration of a player who has "The Yips." Dude was a GOLD GLOVE second baseman for the Yankees when all of a sudden he forgot how to throw. Routine put outs to first became adventures every single time. He literally couldn't hit the broad side of a barn. There was no explaining it... except that his head wasn't right.

I think that the ENTIRE Packer offense had a case of "the yips" last year, and doubly so for Davante. Things just weren't working. When things aren't clicking, players are getting hurt, losses pile up, everybody loses a little bit of mental sharpness, people start pressing, complaining and pointing fingers, and presto... you've got a team with the yips.

This is NOT an excuse for the Packers and it is NOT an excuse for Davante Adams. It's a cause for concern. Some players never recover from the yips.

More than that, I think I would say that I haven't seen any extraordinary physical ability from Adams. I think he has the physical ability to play, but this ain't Randy Moss. So that lowers the ceiling a bit on my expectations. If he can recover from the yips, he might be good, but I don't see him being great.

I HOPE he will be good. But I'll believe it when I see it.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

June 14, 2016 at 07:40 am

"I think that the ENTIRE Packer offense had a case of "the yips" last year, and doubly so for Davante."

Agree. No one on Offense should be given a pass.

"...I think I would say that I haven't seen any extraordinary physical ability from Adams. I think he has the physical ability to play, but this ain't Randy Moss."

The same can be said for any of our other WRs, but together they can be one of the league's best WR groups. Not great, but damn good WRs. I'm fine with that.

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RCPackerFan's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:19 am

'together they can be one of the league's best WR groups. Not great, but damn good WRs. I'm fine with that.'

Completely agree.

As a unit they can be very, very good. Also add to that mix of WR's a better OL, an in shape Lacy, and a QB who you know is out to prove people wrong.

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Tundraboy's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:27 am

I agree. We shall see, who knows what he will or can do. Lots of theories. I think the injury, and pressure messed with his mind, but we still do not know what he can do. He wont get as much leeway this year so he needs to show something early. At least I hope so.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:51 am

True. I don't think Rodgers will attempt to force feed him this season: 1, because Jordy, a trusted WR is back and 2, MM won't be so hesitant to bench him for Ty/Janis/Abby (who have all proved can make plays).

Sh*t, just before submitting, the devil's advocate crept up on me. Maybe force feeding isn't so bad. How else would we find out if a player is ready or not? We probably should have force fed Janis last season.

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Tundraboy's picture

June 14, 2016 at 04:59 pm

Force feed away. Better to know sooner than later. Baptism by fire?

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

June 14, 2016 at 05:04 am

If the article is about believing in Adams, the author's defense is decent, if not compelling. If the author believes in TT's evaluation of Adams, not so much. IMO, when TT took Adams with the 53rd pick, it meant that to justify that pick, Adams had to be a #2. Being the #3 WR would be okay, but it would be a mild disappointment.

I buy the argument that Adams might have been injured and that he did not have a dedicated position coach. Many scouts noted that Adams was pretty raw and did not run the full route tree at Fresno State, and his level of competition was not stellar. Adams was always going to need some time to develop, so perhaps the expectations were too high for some fans; personally, I viewed his ceiling as a #2 WR, and most likely he'd be a #3. I reject the author's other arguments.

1st: Rodgers was not himself. Through the first 6 games, Rodgers had 124 receptions on 182 attempts (68.3% - excellent) for 1491 yards (8.3 yds/att - excellent) 15 TDs vs 2 INTS (extrapolates to 40 TDs vs. 5.33 INTs - again excellent). AR's TD% was 8.24, and his INT% was 1.1% in the first 6 games. In truth, through the first 6 games, AR was on pace to be the MVP again, certainly to be at least in the conversation. What happened is we played Denver, which pressed, jammed, ignored the deep threat, and suddenly the WRs could not get open. AR is like the MLB pitcher, Kershaw: if Kershaw was required to throw a softball instead of a baseball, I imagine his stats might go down, too. After game 6, the WRs just weren't open much. Yes, AR missed some throws when he could not believe his eyes and saw an open WR.

2nd: GB's offense is very complicated. Maybe so. Truth is most NFL WRs improve in year two over their rookie season. The author's examples aren't very persuasive. Cobb caught 80% and 77% of his targets in year 1 and 2, respectively, for a 12.66 yd. average. Jennings caught 63.1% of his targets for a 17.4 yd. average in yr. 2. Cobb had 954 yds and Jennings 920 yards in year two: if Adams had come close to that zip code we wouldn't be reading this article. It is true that Nelson had only 22 receptions in year 2, but he caught 71% of his targets for a 14.5 yd. average. Nelson's issue was that he was behind Driver and Jennings, who both had over 1,000 yd seasons, averaged 15.2 and 16.4 yds/rec, respectively, and Nelson split time with James Jones, who had 32 receptions and a 13.8 yd. average. Plus, Finley had 55 receptions and a 12.3 yd. average, which is really good for a TE. Nelson was behind a ton of proven talent, and would be the 4th option often. James Jones's gross stats went down in his 2nd season, true, but he was injured (missed 6 games), and he still managed to catch 20 passes, including 66.7% of his targets for a 13.7 yd. average. The real truth is that all 4 of the players in your examples were quite efficient in the 2nd seasons, with good yd/rec and catch rates. It was not too complicated for them, just for Adams (and Janis, who similarly was very raw and played against subpar competition).

3rd: comparison to other WRs. Dez Bryant was injured and played 9 games. His QB, Romo, played 4 games. Not surprising that Bryant caught a low % of his targets, though he still put up 12.9 yds/rec. The other WRs, Robinson, Wheaton, Evans, and Cooper, had catch rates of 52.3%, 55.7%, 50.3% and 55.4%, true. What is also true is that they all had over 1,000 yards, and average 17.5, 17.0, 16.3 and 14.9 yards per reception. Adams averaged 9.7 yds/catch. This whole bit really seems to have nothing to do with Adams; it has to do with the author's twitter argument with some guy. I am not even clear whether you are suggesting that catch rate is unimportant. Of course it is important, taken in context. If Adams' catch rate is still 52.3% in 2016, but he averages 17 yds per catch, I'll take it. We can then revisit this topic.

While AR was on an MVP pace in the first six games, Adams' stat line was 27rec/49 targets, 55.4%, 272 yds, 10.07 yds/catch.
During the last 10 games, Adams' stats were 23/44, 52.3%, 211 yards, 9.59 yds/catch. A small dip, but not too significant.
JJ's stats first six games: 21 catches, 29 targets, 72.4%, 424 yds, 20.19 yds/catch.
JJ's stats last ten games: 29 catches, 71 targets, 40.8%, 466 yds, 16.06 yds/catch. JJ fell off a cliff after defenses switched how they defended GB, though JJ obviously still made a lot of big plays. JJ's decline affected Cobb:
Cobb - first 6 games: 30/47 (63.8%), 350 yards, 11.67 yds/catch
Cobb - last 10 games: 49/82 (59.7%) 479 yards, 9.77 yds/catch.
As a note, Nelson's absence affected Cobb in both the first six and last 10 games - Cobb had a career catch % of 73.9% and 13.43 yds/catch with Nelson on the field.

I believe Adams is a legitimate NFL talent, who can be a #2 WR, but might only be a #3 WR. I don't believe that Adams will justify TT's evaluation based on my own interpretation of what a WR taken with the 53rd pick should be with AR as his QB.

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dobber's picture

June 14, 2016 at 06:18 am

Go DATA!!!

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Branden Burke's picture

June 14, 2016 at 10:14 am

And at 5 am. Good job. Well said.

His college yards per catch of 13.0 against lesser talent shows his catch rate is probably what needs to improve the most. His YPC will probably never be great unless that was just a product of his role in fresno.

Physically Adams is bigger, faster, stronger than Jarvis landry. But landry's catch rate is great, at least from the 2014 numbers. Jarvis's aDOT was 5.4 and his YPC was low so he has to have a high catch rate and he was a pro bowler.

I think Adams can be Landry if used similarly, or a better James Jones if he stays in his current role. Maybe even better. I just dont know if Green Bay needs another guy like Landry when they have Cobb for that role, who was traditionally very effective in it and probably will continue to be. A #2 oposite of Jordy on the outside and a good pass catching TE is green bays biggest weakness. I hope cook shows he is better than his career has so far, but he has never shown to be as good as Finley was, even as much as people like to forget.

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4EVER's picture

June 14, 2016 at 12:19 pm

Yahoo, great stuff TGR!...I ask all, is there a better site on the web?

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Tundraboy's picture

June 14, 2016 at 05:03 pm

As my son would say , Nope.

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packrulz's picture

June 14, 2016 at 05:14 am

TT passed on Allen Robinson of the Jaguars for Adams, I'm pretty disappointed so far. I thought Janis and Abberderis should have played more last season.

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Rossonero's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:03 am

TT also passed on Jarvis Landry, who's had nearly 200 catches in 2 years.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:09 am

I could've sworn many Packer fans were down on him after his Combine.

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RCPackerFan's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:08 am

the part that bothered me was when Nelson was out, Cobb was hurt, Adams was hurt, Montgomery got hurt, they still didn't really use Janis and Abbrederis until they absolutely had to. McCarthy came in and said that Abbrederis was ready to play 4 games before but he chose not to play him. WHY? What were they saving him for?

Janis, I get that he wasn't ready to play full time, but I still can't believe they couldn't have found a role for him especially when they were so hurt.

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croatpackfan's picture

June 14, 2016 at 05:58 am

I'm with you on this. I really think lot of people here will eat their own words... Ankle injury is almost of same importance to wide receiver as injury of the hands. You can not run properly, so you are slower in straight line as well as when performing moves to trick your opponent. Additionally, you can not jump high as usual. Also, you are losing confidence with each and every throw thrown to you you did not catch...
Thank you for the voice of reason!

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DrealynWilliams's picture

June 14, 2016 at 11:57 am

Yep, and I am taking names. This is going to be a good season.

EDIT: Whoa, someone really doesn't like you for some reason.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

June 15, 2016 at 01:15 am

Ha Ha! just be sure that after my name you write: nuanced. [I love that word: you can be flat wrong, even ignorant, and still get credit for being smart.]

My opus above should be read more as a criticism of James Jones and a nuanced view of Adams.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

June 15, 2016 at 11:25 am

Lol,you're good. I didn't take what you said as a shot towards Adams.

There's no denying he had a bad season and arguably the worst out of the WR group. It's the folks that are basically labeling him a bust, saying he doesn't belong in the NFL or should be cut that I'm taking note of.

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Rossonero's picture

June 14, 2016 at 08:10 am

I am not giving up on Adams yet. This is a make or break year for him though.

Last year the hype and expectations for him after Nelson's injury was completely absurd.

Everything that could've gone wrong did go wrong-- Rodgers in a funk, offense out of sync, offensive line decimated by injuries, no running game, Adams ankle injuries, lack of confidence, no positional coach, bad play calling, etc. I am not giving him a complete pass though as he dropped too many passes and in general sucked.

He needs to improve his functional playing strength to consistently beat the jam so he does not get hung up at the line. Some say his college production was inflated from a quick-hitting, lateral passing game. If that's his strength, then do the dink and dunk with him. He's a James Jones type and doesn't have the speed like Jordy does.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

June 14, 2016 at 11:56 am

I agree with everything stated but the make or break part. Now, of course he can't have another season like he had in the previous, but if Ty, Janis and/or Abby doesn't "break out" this season then Adams is a sure-thing to play out his contract.

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

June 15, 2016 at 01:29 am

Semantics, Drealyn. Adams can't have another season like his rookie year, or his 2nd season either. He needs to make a jump or a leap, or break out. Doesn't have to be a star, but can't be what he's been. I'd say a jump is the minimum he needs to do.

If he doesn't improve, GB will have to spend a day one or more likely day two draft choice on a WR, unless an outside WR (as opposed to a slot guy like Montgomery) passes Adams.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

June 15, 2016 at 11:48 am

@Reynoldo

I agree that he needs to improve on his previous seasons - that should go without saying. But it's only for him to stay a starter. There's no way for him to go but up. 60/600/5 would be an improvement, but it wouldn't be a "make" or a break out situation. He'll play out his contract no matter what. The Packers usually ride it out with their 1st and 2nd round picks that at least flash from time to time and then we see those 1-year contracts (the real make or break season) following the rookie contract.

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dobber's picture

June 15, 2016 at 12:49 pm

The question becomes: what is a realistic step up? If the offense is healthy in general, and Cobb and Nelson get theirs....and Cook gets his...what's left for Adams? I think a year like 2014 would be about right.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

June 15, 2016 at 01:16 pm

I think 60/600/5 is realistic. WR3 should be even better than that,but there will be many factors. Running game effectiveness, WRs 4-6 might deserve increased PT, Rodgers decisions...etc.

Cook isn't going to come in and get Finley type targets. He'll be splitting snaps with Rodgers.

So I agree that 2014 (targets) would be about right for this season because of the many options after him (2 TEs and 3 WRs worthy of extra targets).

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Thegreatreynoldo's picture

June 15, 2016 at 01:27 pm

My prediction is that RR gets 250 snaps as he watches Cook play 700+ (most at TE but maybe 150 split wide). And I am about 50/50 on my predictions.

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DrealynWilliams's picture

June 15, 2016 at 01:55 pm

Damn, that would be a huge drop off for Rodgers. That would shock the hell out of me. While I do think Cook might edge Rodgers in total snaps (because he can be more or as effective on any part of the field and at any receiving position) it's hard to see him go from 799 Offensive snaps to 250 (roughly).

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Ima fubar's picture

June 14, 2016 at 03:03 pm

I read something that may explain the problem with the receivers. A dback for an opposing team was saying he likes playing the packers because they don't run routes like other teams but run to an area on the field and as a dback, he knows the routines better than some of the receivers he has had to cover.
Perhaps if this is so, it really screws up what these guys have done their whole lives, slows them down, makes them think to much and always having a back on their back waiting for them. ?

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Oppy's picture

June 14, 2016 at 09:58 pm

Devante Adams is a stud waiting to happen

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stockholder's picture

June 14, 2016 at 11:43 pm

Psychics ; What you really need to see is the rhetoric is this. Passes were dropped except in Adams bread basket. There are more durable and talented alternatives. The peripheral preference and treatment is dangerous to this offense. And A-ROD. This offense was better when Adams got hurt! When you compare stats/Film, look at the TGT and the need for Fds. They stopped throwing to Adams in the clutch. They went to Montgomery instead. Even James Jones produced more for the packers. Even Janis became the more powerful buzz. Did you enjoy seeing Rodgers holding up his hands? Devante Adams has not shown the toughness for the NFL. And Now he will only take away from the development of others. MM should showcase Jordy ,Cobb, Montgomery , janis, and the Tight end position. Why do you need to believe in Adams?

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PETER MAIZ's picture

June 15, 2016 at 03:22 pm

Adams had the dropsies either because of a nagging ankle injury or from a lack of toughness or insecurity or both. I believe we've gone into Adams ad nauseam. What is more meaningful is that the offense improves. Being number 20 just doesn't cut it. Remember when it was said that the defense saved several games? I frankly think that the new tight end Cook could be essential here because Richard is as slow as snails (although I must add with gifted hands).
I used to think Janis couldn't cut it because he wasn't bright and this is not the case. He has a high Wonderlic score.
So as far as Davante, this will definitely be his "prove it year". He's got to stop being such a fancy pants and be a "don't you dare tread on me" kind of tough guy.

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