At the beginning of the season my hopes couldn't have been higher. We had a top 10 defense, had actually made the playoffs, and had spent a boatload to establish a better offense, picking up receivers Antwaan Randle-El and Brandon Lloyd in the offseason. These were certainly upgrades over David Patten and James Thrash, right? Huge upgrades, right? Superbowl or bust, right???
Apparently not, says Anthony Brown at Hog Heaven.
Rod Gardner left the Skins under a cloud. He was widely considered the underachiever who earned the nickname "fifty-fifty;" as in "what are the odds he will catch a ball that hits him in the hands?" Yet the highly touted, free agent receivers imported this year are unlikely to match Gardner's stats in his last season here (2004).And he's right. Gardner finished 2004 with 51 receptions, 650 yards, and 5 touchdowns. Randle-El and Lloyd have combined for a comparable 52 receptions, 663 yards, and 3 touchdowns.
Was this forseeable? Probably. Gardner's 5 touchdowns were the same amount Lloyd had as the #1 WR in San Fransisco in 2005. And Randle-El never racked up more than 650 yards.
Football Outsiders Aaron Schatz, while pointing out our 25th spot in his DVOA ranking, also reminds:
We have 80 wide receivers ranked in DVOA, based on a minimum of 50 intended passes. Antwaan Randle El is 75th. Brandon Lloyd is 78th. So much for weapons opposite Santana Moss.Brandon Lloyd is only catching 41% of the passes thrown his way which is about the lowest catch % in the league.