This year I had the chance to ask Football Outsiders a few questions on behalf of Hogs Haven. Football Outsiders provides in depth stats that you can’t find anywhere else. There signature metric is DVOA which not only takes into account statistics but it measures efficiency and accounts for circumstance. They don’t just aim to through out numbers though their goal is to provide objective writing and analysis backed by their research to improve and change that way football is written about. Their work has been featured in Sports Illustrated, ESPN, SB Nation, CBS Sports, and Bleacher Report.
Here is today’s question and answer:
Hogs Haven: With Paul Richardson, Jamison Crowder, and hopefully Jordan Reed in the mix could Josh Doctson actually surprise and show that he can be a #1 receiver? Will Smith get him the chances to go get it or dump it off to the other guys?
Football Outsiders: We were pessimistic about Doctson’s chances coming out of college -- our Playmaker Projections (https://www.footballoutsiders.com/stat-analysis/2016/playmaker-score-2016) ranked him just eighth among wide receivers in the 2016 draft class -- and so far he has done little to prove us wrong. There were 72 wide receivers drafted in the first round between 2000 and 2016. Doctson ranks 51st among that group with 31.6 yards per game through his first two seasons. The 21 players below him on that list don’t paint a pretty picture. Only two ever gained a thousand yards in a season, though those two -- Roddy White and Santana Moss -- became quality long-term starters. (Washington fans, of course, should be well familiar with Moss and his career.) A handful of others -- Darrius Heyward-Bey, Bryant Johnson -- never hit the thousand-yard threshold, but they did last for the better part of a decade in the NFL as role players. The others, for the most part, never amounted to much and quickly faded away. You could say that Doctson’s 2016 season was mostly wiped out by an Achilles injury, and that he should have still been considered a rookie last year, and you’d have a point. But history has not often been kind to receivers who have started this slowly in their careers, and if Doctson doesn’t break out in 2018, it’s fair to question if he ever will.
Thanks to Vincent Verhei who you can follow on twitter @FO_VVerhei
As a fierce defender and fan of Doctson I think FO take here is a fair one. This is it for Doctson to prove he can be a #1 and live up to his 1st round selection status. Of course there is a step between being worthy of a 1st round pick and being a complete bust. While I know we are all rooting for Doctson to step up and produce big this season he may not do that but instead show the team he has just enough to be a solid #2 or other contributor on offense. While that is disappointing it’s a lot better outcome than him falling off a cliff production wise. We’ll see. . .
You can pick up a copy of Football Outsiders 2018 Almanac here