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Perspective: Through 6 games - Luck 2018 vs Rivers 2020


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17 minutes ago, EastStreet said:

Through 6 games: Luck 2018 vs Rivers 2020

 

Record 
Luck: 1-5
Rivers: 4-2

 

Worst losses
Luck - Bengals (6-10), at Jets (4-12)
Rivers - at Jags (1-5), at Browns (4-2)

 

Best Win
Luck - at Washington (7-9)
Rivers - at Chicago (5-1)

 

QBR
Luck - 53.8
Rivers - 64.7

 

Rating 
Luck - 86.8
Rivers - 93.0

 

AVG
Luck - 6.2
Rivers - 8.1

 

INTs
Luck - 8 
Rivers - 6

 

Longest Completion Per Game
Luck - 26/22/29/42/28/34
Rivers - 35/33/45/36/36/55

 

Deep Ball Accuracy (comp %)
Luck (for the year) - 41.4%
Rivers (through 5) - 57.1% (#7)

 

Air Yards Per Attempt
Luck (for the year) - 4.4
Rivers (through 5) - 7.3


Now I'm not saying Rivers is better than Luck. But he was better the first 6 games in respective seasons. Both were coming into more or less new systems, learning a new scheme, and building chemistry with new guys.  

 

Rivers can't push the ball downfield? Significantly better AVG, clearly longer completions per game. Also, significantly better in deep ball accuracy and air yards.

 

Morale of the story. Rivers isn't all that bad. For those calling for his head, were you calling for Luck's head after 6 in 2018? If you were, you know luck settled in a bit after the first 6.

 

Not saying we're going to go on a run like 2018, or Rivers won't look bad in games to come, just saying a little perspective every once in a while helps.

Interesting stats for sure

Just now, boo2202 said:

This is a totally different team

I’d argue that outside if WR, it is a better team.

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I was hoping you weren't going to argue that Rivers is better.  Thank the Lord East.  

 

I DO still think if Luck were on this team and healthy, this team is likely 6-0, 5-1 at worst.  But Old Man Rivers is here and Luck is changing diapers.  Still, I had this team pegged at 5-1, which isn't too far off before the season started.  I had predicted a Browns loss (I actually had them winning the AFC North - oops!).  I did not see the Jags loss coming.  This team is not perfect, but it IS in contention.  That's all you need at this point in the season.  Get hot the last few weeks and play your way in and let the chips fall where they may.

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3 minutes ago, boo2202 said:

This is a totally different team

From an O perspective, advanced stats say that Luck had a better supporting cast and pretty much equal protection rate.

In short, sure the team is different, but looking purely at the O, and individual stats, Rivers has performed better.

 

SUPPORTING CAST EFFICIENCY (skill players)

Luck - #13

Rivers - #24

 

 

PROTECTION RATE (the rate itself is almost identical)

Luck - #4

Rivers - #7

 

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4 minutes ago, EastStreet said:

From an O perspective, advanced stats say that Luck had a better supporting cast and pretty much equal protection rate.

In short, sure the team is different, but looking purely at the O, and individual stats, Rivers has performed better.

 

SUPPORTING CAST EFFICIENCY (skill players)

Luck - #13

Rivers - #24

 

 

PROTECTION RATE (the rate itself is almost identical)

Luck - #4

Rivers - #7

 

Just curious, where do you pull these stats from?

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5 minutes ago, AZColt11 said:

I was hoping you weren't going to argue that Rivers is better.  Thank the Lord East.  

 

I DO still think if Luck were on this team and healthy, this team is likely 6-0, 5-1 at worst.  But Old Man Rivers is here and Luck is changing diapers.  Still, I had this team pegged at 5-1, which isn't too far off before the season started.  I had predicted a Browns loss (I actually had them winning the AFC North - oops!).  I did not see the Jags loss coming.  This team is not perfect, but it IS in contention.  That's all you need at this point in the season.  Get hot the last few weeks and play your way in and let the chips fall where they may.

That jags loss in a normal season with preparation and preseason turns out differently 8/10 times. It sucks that it will count. 

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3 minutes ago, AZColt11 said:

I was hoping you weren't going to argue that Rivers is better.  Thank the Lord East.  

 

I DO still think if Luck were on this team and healthy, this team is likely 6-0, 5-1 at worst.  But Old Man Rivers is here and Luck is changing diapers.  Still, I had this team pegged at 5-1, which isn't too far off before the season started.  I had predicted a Browns loss (I actually had them winning the AFC North - oops!).  I did not see the Jags loss coming.  This team is not perfect, but it IS in contention.  That's all you need at this point in the season.  Get hot the last few weeks and play your way in and let the chips fall where they may.

If you look at their career stats and averages, Rivers and Luck are very similar in a lot of ways. And Rivers has a high passer rating, and similar QBR. Almost identical TD and INT %s.  Rivers has a better completion %, AVG, and ANY/A.

 

I'd absolutely rather have Luck than Rivers "right now", but there is a debate to be had who is better from a career perspective, 

4 minutes ago, csmopar said:

Just curious, where do you pull these stats from?

Pro Football Reference and Player Profiler.

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Luck's INTs hurt the O just as much as River's picks have hurt it now.  The difference then is that TY was TY and it was easier for Luck to come back from the mistakes quickly, along with Ebron.  A situation that probably was born out in the next 10 games rather than the first 6.  Not sure if Rivers is going to have his TY or Ebron.

 

I don't think anyone wants the Luck of the first 6 games of 2018. 

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3 minutes ago, DougDew said:

Luck's INTs hurt the O just as much as River's picks have hurt it now.  The difference then is that TY was TY and it was easier for Luck to come back from the mistakes quickly, along with Ebron.  A situation that probably was born out in the next 10 games rather than the first 6.  Not sure if Rivers is going to have his TY or Ebron.

 

I don't think anyone wants the Luck of the first 6 games of 2018. 

TY was pulling double teams most times in 2018, not so much now. He's still getting CB1 coverage I think, just not as many doubles. Hoping Mo is back in the mix after the bye. I like what Burton did last game, but he's more slot WR than TE in my opinion. Pittman coming back, and hopefully maturing as the year goes on could be a nice wildcard. I love Pascal, and he runs great routes, but he's likely hit his ceiling.

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One of the two was coming back from missing an entire year due to shoulder surgery.

 

No ones gonna mention that? Remember Brissett came in to throw a Hail Mary because Luck couldn’t?

 

Luck played horribly the first 5 games. Then he went on a tear! Let’s see how they stack up at The end of the season.

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15 minutes ago, Flash7 said:

One of the two was coming back from missing an entire year due to shoulder surgery.

 

No ones gonna mention that? Remember Brissett came in to throw a Hail Mary because Luck couldn’t?

 

Luck played horribly the first 5 games. Then he went on a tear! Let’s see how they stack up at The end of the season.

 

Fair point. One of them was gone for a year. 

However, since we're adding caveats, lets note that one of them is on a new team, new city, and hadn't played with the guys on his offense before.

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2 hours ago, EastStreet said:

Through 6 games: Luck 2018 vs Rivers 2020

 

Record 
Luck: 1-5
Rivers: 4-2

 

Worst losses
Luck - Bengals (6-10), at Jets (4-12)
Rivers - at Jags (1-5), at Browns (4-2)

 

Best Win
Luck - at Washington (7-9)
Rivers - at Chicago (5-1)

 

QBR
Luck - 53.8
Rivers - 64.7

 

Rating 
Luck - 86.8
Rivers - 93.0

 

AVG
Luck - 6.2
Rivers - 8.1

 

INTs
Luck - 8 
Rivers - 6

 

Longest Completion Per Game
Luck - 26/22/29/42/28/34
Rivers - 35/33/45/36/36/55

 

Deep Ball Accuracy (comp %)
Luck (for the year) - 41.4%
Rivers (through 5) - 57.1% (#7)

 

Air Yards Per Attempt
Luck (for the year) - 4.4
Rivers (through 5) - 7.3


Now I'm not saying Rivers is better than Luck. But he was better the first 6 games in respective seasons. Both were coming into more or less new systems, learning a new scheme, and building chemistry with new guys.  

 

Rivers can't push the ball downfield? Significantly better AVG, clearly longer completions per game. Also, significantly better in deep ball accuracy and air yards.

 

Morale of the story. Rivers isn't all that bad. For those calling for his head, were you calling for Luck's head after 6 in 2018? If you were, you know luck settled in a bit after the first 6.

 

Not saying we're going to go on a run like 2018, or Rivers won't look bad in games to come, just saying a little perspective every once in a while helps.

 

I touched on this before.

 

Things turned around while Luck was down 0-21 and then Frank opened it up and Luck started slinging even though we lost on a 4th down call to go down vs Texans to go 1-3 in 2018. Fast forward to 2020, once we got down 0-21 vs the Bengals, things started opening up. Frank has to stay ahead of the sticks and start calling for more passes on early downs. I hope we start using everyone on the roster that is a pass catcher and not wait on Campbell and Pittman, and when they come back it will be a bonus.

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41 minutes ago, Flash7 said:

One of the two was coming back from missing an entire year due to shoulder surgery.

 

No ones gonna mention that? Remember Brissett came in to throw a Hail Mary because Luck couldn’t?

 

Luck played horribly the first 5 games. Then he went on a tear! Let’s see how they stack up at The end of the season.

 

Luck actually started playing better the 4th game once we went down 0-21. Against the Patriots and Jets, our D gave up 30 plus and 40 plus points to lose 24-38 and 34-42 respectively but Luck still did well enough to score plenty of points. Guys had passes ricochet off them for INTs like Pascal letting it bounce off him in the Patriots game, Marlon Mack letting it bounce off his hands, ala Kenton Keith style for a pick six on opening play in Jets game. So many drops by our pass catchers that did not help Luck out. Heck, if you look at the Patriots game, Wilkins caught a ball in the flat and as he was going down, McCourty stripped him. If you look at the link in that Patriots game above, Luck was throwing darn well by then, the 5th game. In fact, it was the second half of the 4th game vs the Texans where Luck and our offense had Watt and their D gassed, Luck was slinging it, was a pleasure to watch. Our D and Eberflus, enough said.

 

Luck was horrible for 3 games and a half. I know it darn well because I dropped him after 3 games in a yahoo league and I watched someone else pick him up and feast with his production from that point onwards. :) 

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12 minutes ago, chad72 said:

 

I touched on this before.

 

Things turned around while Luck was down 0-21 and then Frank opened it up and Luck started slinging even though we lost on a 4th down call to go down vs Texans to go 1-3 in 2018. Fast forward to 2020, once we got down 0-21 vs the Bengals, things started opening up. Frank has to stay ahead of the sticks and start calling for more passes on early downs. I hope we start using everyone on the roster that is a pass catcher and not wait on Campbell and Pittman, and when they come back it will be a bonus.

 

Yup. Not sure why it takes being down big in a game before Frank opens up the offense. I'm now willing to bet we see a bit more aggressiveness from Frank going forward now too as the season progresses.

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2 minutes ago, Nesjan3 said:

The team is 100% differen and its completely different situations. Also Rivers has been in this system before. This has no merit.

 

Same system just means knowledge of the playbook and knowing the reads fast enough. It does not equate to chemistry with pass catchers.

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3 minutes ago, chad72 said:

 

Same system just means knowledge of the playbook and knowing the reads fast enough. It does not equate to chemistry with pass catchers.

Yes but if your comparing the two quarterbacks to say both are entering new systems is just pretty unfair to Luck

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19 minutes ago, Nesjan3 said:

Yes but if your comparing the two quarterbacks to say both are entering new systems is just pretty unfair to Luck

 

Yeah, I agree, it is apples and oranges to me. Luck coming off major shoulder surgery, the D and O coming off the previous regime of Pagano, lots of changes there. At least there was coaching continuity before Rivers stepped in to build upon existing systems. 

 

Luck had some backyard QBing ability, that is pretty much non-existent with Rivers. Luck would have thrown some darts vs Browns by escaping the pocket and probably won us that game. It is not like we are comparing 2 pocket passers that are both statues, like Manning and Rivers.

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15 minutes ago, chad72 said:

 

Yeah, I agree, it is apples and oranges to me. Luck coming off major shoulder surgery, the D and O coming off the previous regime of Pagano, lots of changes there. At least there was coaching continuity before Rivers stepped in to build upon existing systems. 

 

Luck had some backyard QBing ability, that is pretty much non-existent with Rivers. Luck would have thrown some darts vs Browns by escaping the pocket and probably won us that game. It is not like we are comparing 2 pocket passers that are both statues, like Manning and Rivers.

Just so many variables its not a viable comparison to really highlight anything except a pretty average-bad start to respective seasons for both Qbs. Interesting stats though. 

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6 hours ago, EastStreet said:

Through 6 games: Luck 2018 vs Rivers 2020

 

Record 
Luck: 1-5
Rivers: 4-2

 

Worst losses
Luck - Bengals (6-10), at Jets (4-12)
Rivers - at Jags (1-5), at Browns (4-2)

 

Best Win
Luck - at Washington (7-9)
Rivers - at Chicago (5-1)

 

QBR
Luck - 53.8
Rivers - 64.7

 

Rating 
Luck - 86.8
Rivers - 93.0

 

AVG
Luck - 6.2
Rivers - 8.1

 

INTs
Luck - 8 
Rivers - 6

 

Longest Completion Per Game
Luck - 26/22/29/42/28/34
Rivers - 35/33/45/36/36/55

 

Deep Ball Accuracy (comp %)
Luck (for the year) - 41.4%
Rivers (through 5) - 57.1% (#7)

 

Air Yards Per Attempt
Luck (for the year) - 4.4
Rivers (through 5) - 7.3


Now I'm not saying Rivers is better than Luck. But he was better the first 6 games in respective seasons. Both were coming into more or less new systems, learning a new scheme, and building chemistry with new guys.  

 

Rivers can't push the ball downfield? Significantly better AVG, clearly longer completions per game. Also, significantly better in deep ball accuracy and air yards.

 

Morale of the story. Rivers isn't all that bad. For those calling for his head, were you calling for Luck's head after 6 in 2018? If you were, you know luck settled in a bit after the first 6.

 

Not saying we're going to go on a run like 2018, or Rivers won't look bad in games to come, just saying a little perspective every once in a while helps.

 

Great post ! Thanks for sharing !

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6 hours ago, AZColt11 said:

I was hoping you weren't going to argue that Rivers is better.  Thank the Lord East.  

 

I DO still think if Luck were on this team and healthy, this team is likely 6-0, 5-1 at worst.  But Old Man Rivers is here and Luck is changing diapers.  Still, I had this team pegged at 5-1, which isn't too far off before the season started.  I had predicted a Browns loss (I actually had them winning the AFC North - oops!).  I did not see the Jags loss coming.  This team is not perfect, but it IS in contention.  That's all you need at this point in the season.  Get hot the last few weeks and play your way in and let the chips fall where they may.

Luck was better and he knows it but Rivers is a HOFamer. Reason why Luck won't be is because he retired to early.

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6 hours ago, AZColt11 said:

I was hoping you weren't going to argue that Rivers is better.  Thank the Lord East.  

 

I DO still think if Luck were on this team and healthy, this team is likely 6-0, 5-1 at worst.  But Old Man Rivers is here and Luck is changing diapers.  Still, I had this team pegged at 5-1, which isn't too far off before the season started.  I had predicted a Browns loss (I actually had them winning the AFC North - oops!).  I did not see the Jags loss coming.  This team is not perfect, but it IS in contention.  That's all you need at this point in the season.  Get hot the last few weeks and play your way in and let the chips fall where they may.

 

Rivers always picked up steam under Norv Turner at least in December. Remember them being 4-8 in November after losing to us by a FG 20-23 in 2008 and winning 4 in a row to finish 8-8 as division winners and Sproles/Scifres playoff game against us?? I just feel he might lead us to an underdog win vs the Ravens or Steelers. Only time will tell. 

 

As recently as 2018, they were 7-3 in November and won 5 out of their last 6 to finish 12-4 winning a 3 point game at Steelers and a 1 pt. game at Chiefs.

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We had the exact same thread last year but with Brissett... I will say today what I said back then - this is not a fair comparison for Rivers and this is not one he will win by the end of the season... because it ignores some very important distinctions. 

 

Luck had one of the worst OLs in the league in those first 5-6 games(both Smith and AC weren't playing in the beginning of the season - don't remember when exactly we put that OLine together but if I'm not mistaken it was about that time - week 5-6). Also, Luck was coming back from a career threatening shoulder injury and was obviously not comfortable making some of the more arm-strength demanding throws. Because of the lack of good pass-protection Reich was dialing up a dink and dunk game with TONS of passing but almost everything was short. In the long-term Rivers won't win that comparison. Week 6 is about where Luck started getting into his groove and trusting his arm again. He had a tremendous season by the end of it. I don't expect huge difference between Rivers weeks 1-6 and Rivers week 7-16. And I don't demand it. I think it's an unfair expectation and unfair comparison for Rivers. 

 

(BTW, for the record - I was pretty worried for Luck in the first 5-6 games of that season... I was starting to have my doubts about whether his arm is shot now and whether he will ever be the same again... it was a pretty bad stretch for him at the time)

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5 hours ago, Colt.45 said:

 

Fair point. One of them was gone for a year. 

However, since we're adding caveats, lets note that one of them is on a new team, new city, and hadn't played with the guys on his offense before.

 

I would also add that 2018 TY Hilton > 2020 TY Hilton.   Plus Luck had 2018 Eric Ebron and 2018 Jack Doyle.  Both were big improvements over what we have now.  Also Luck had 2018 Dontrelle Inman.  

 

I would grant that with 2 years of experience playing together. . . when at full strength the 2020 OL is better than the 2018 OL.   But only really when the line is at full strength.  In one of those losses (Browns) the line clearly wasn't at full strength.  

 

 

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1 hour ago, JediXMan said:

Speaking about Luck any life updates about him seems like he went off the grid lol.

 

Last I heard his wife gave birth to a baby girl, he is enjoying life and from my understanding still in the Indianapolis area.  

 

https://sportsnaut.com/report-andrew-luck-doing-really-well-after-retirement-nfl-return-unlikely/

 

For some reason the article incorrectly identifies Dungy as Luck's former coach.  He never was.  

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7 hours ago, DougDew said:

Luck's INTs hurt the O just as much as River's picks have hurt it now.  The difference then is that TY was TY and it was easier for Luck to come back from the mistakes quickly, along with Ebron.  A situation that probably was born out in the next 10 games rather than the first 6.  Not sure if Rivers is going to have his TY or Ebron.

 

I don't think anyone wants the Luck of the first 6 games of 2018. 

Not entirely fair.  Luck was coming off of over a year without playing any ball and virtually no preseason.  He had to get warmed up and expectations weren't that high early on from what I recall.  They knew it would take him a while to get going.  He did.  We have yet to see if Rivers will do the same.  I hope he does.

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10 hours ago, EastStreet said:

Through 6 games: Luck 2018 vs Rivers 2020

 

Record 
Luck: 1-5
Rivers: 4-2

 

Worst losses
Luck - Bengals (6-10), at Jets (4-12)
Rivers - at Jags (1-5), at Browns (4-2)

 

Best Win
Luck - at Washington (7-9)
Rivers - at Chicago (5-1)

 

QBR
Luck - 53.8
Rivers - 64.7

 

Rating 
Luck - 86.8
Rivers - 93.0

 

AVG
Luck - 6.2
Rivers - 8.1

 

INTs
Luck - 8 
Rivers - 6

 

Longest Completion Per Game
Luck - 26/22/29/42/28/34
Rivers - 35/33/45/36/36/55

 

Deep Ball Accuracy (comp %)
Luck (for the year) - 41.4%
Rivers (through 5) - 57.1% (#7)

 

Air Yards Per Attempt
Luck (for the year) - 4.4
Rivers (through 5) - 7.3


Now I'm not saying Rivers is better than Luck. But he was better the first 6 games in respective seasons. Both were coming into more or less new systems, learning a new scheme, and building chemistry with new guys.  

 

Rivers can't push the ball downfield? Significantly better AVG, clearly longer completions per game. Also, significantly better in deep ball accuracy and air yards.

 

Morale of the story. Rivers isn't all that bad. For those calling for his head, were you calling for Luck's head after 6 in 2018? If you were, you know luck settled in a bit after the first 6.

 

Not saying we're going to go on a run like 2018, or Rivers won't look bad in games to come, just saying a little perspective every once in a while helps.

Luck team didn’t seem as talented especially on defense.

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10 hours ago, csmopar said:

That jags loss in a normal season with preparation and preseason turns out differently 8/10 times. It sucks that it will count. 

I still think we would have lost. We always lose the opener, and we always lose in Jacksonville. It’s just what we do. We could have Patrick Mahomes and we’d still find a way to lose that one

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Luck was injured and had a weak arm the first 6 weeks .   .It does not show the full picture .  luck had 16 touchdowns to rivers 7  and throwing close to 500 yards in some games .   I do agree rivers will get better as the season goes on though , and of course the colts should stick with rivers as long as their in the playoff hunt .    Having a pro bowl veteran is much better then a rookie or jacoby come playoff time like with the broncos .   However if the colts get knocked out of the playoffs there is no point keeping rivers in and eason should get some game time reps .

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4 minutes ago, coming on strong said:

Luck was injured and had a weak arm the first 6 weeks .   .It does not show the full picture .  luck had 16 touchdowns to rivers 7  and throwing close to 500 yards in some games .   I do agree rivers will get better as the season goes on though , and of course the colts should stick with rivers as long as their in the playoff hunt .    Having a pro bowl veteran is much better then a rookie or jacoby come playoff time like with the broncos .   However if the colts get knocked out of the playoffs there is no point keeping rivers in and eason should get some game time reps .

Luck was not injured in 2018... but that being said, right now Rivers is BETTER than Luck. Today. Why? because he's at least playing. We can't compare QBs that are playing with QBs that haven't played since 2018. A better comparison would be Rivers in 2018 vs Luck in 2018. 

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9 hours ago, Colt.45 said:

 

Fair point. One of them was gone for a year. 

However, since we're adding caveats, lets note that one of them is on a new team, new city, and hadn't played with the guys on his offense before.

 

Rivers was also forced to do virtual learning/meetings with his new team and coaching staff due to covid.  The Rookies on this team had very little NFL experience compared to years past (Pittman was the #2 WR and Taylor has become the number #1 RB this season).  If I recall correctly, Luck played very little in preseason games that year... but this year Rivers and his teammates didn't even get to play preseason games.

 

Also, through 6 weeks Rivers has lost his RB 1 (Mack), WRs 2 and 3 (Pittman and Campbell), and has seen all 3 of his TEs (Doyle, Burton, MAC) miss games.  

 

On top of that, TY seems like a different (not in a good way) TY than he was in 2018.  I think he's slowing down a bit and he and Rivers don't really seem to be on the same page yet (TY has played several years with Luck prior to 2018).  I'd say the only part of this offense (not including QB) compared to 2018 which is better is the OL and maybe over time the RB (Taylor looks better the past few games than he did early on).  The WR and TE play has seemingly declined.

 

8 hours ago, Nesjan3 said:

Yes but if your comparing the two quarterbacks to say both are entering new systems is just pretty unfair to Luck

 

Rivers has familiarity with Reich and Sirianni from SD (Reich was QB coach in 2013 and OC in 2014-2015).  Reich then spent a couple seasons as OC in Philly.  Sirianni was quality control, QB coach, WR coach when he was in San Diego.  This is a similar system to a previous system Rivers had been in, but it's not the same system and it has entirely new players, who Rivers didn't even get to play a pre-season game with.

 

___________________

 

All-in-all, I think Rivers has played very well.  He put that ball 50 yards in the air on a perfect strike to Marcus Johnson last week.  He's still got arm strength and accuracy.  He made two dumb throws in JAX which resulted in INTs and two dumb throws against CLE which were INTs.  He's not fast, but he never was... I really have no concerns with his arm strength and if he can just limit his mistakes (it's like 95-99% of the game he plays very well and then 1-5% of the game he does something dumb), I think he'll be just fine.  Outside of the CLE game, the OL is keeping him pretty clean, which is something I think he's still getting used to after his last few years in SD.  

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    • TY - 2Y/22M - he can still play but he’s not Tyreek Hill taking the top of defenses anymore, and with his disappearing act at the beginning of the year I’m afraid to sign him any longer or with too much guaranteed. Partly for sentimental reasons I want him to stay, but I do think he’s still got some juice.    Mack - 1Y/1M - Likable player but due to his position and injury, no way can I justify giving him much more than vet minimum.    Houston - 1Y/8M - Fell off a lot this year compared to his first year. Still our best edge player, basically by default and I’d be hoping we can get a more 2019 performance out of him at arguably our weakest position on the team.    Autry - Walk. He will price himself out with an inflated sense of value because he’s gotten decent sack numbers, but he is the definition of JAG and I’d only keep him if he agreed to a minimum contract.    Rhodes - 1Y/6M - He was a stud this year. If we could guarantee that he won’t revert back to his last two years in Minnesota I would be willing to go longer and higher. With how much he fell off after getting paid the first time, I’m not giving him a long term deal.    Walker - 1Y/2M - He was playing a very small percentage of downs at the end of the year so I’m keeping him less based on ability and more based on leadership and football savvy.    Hooker - Walk. Both sides need to just move on. I’d keep him at minimum too but I think both sides want a fresh start. Also a little miscast in the current defense so no reason to force a square peg into a round hole.    Brissett - 1Y/5M - Too big of a fan of Brissett as a man to want to see him leave. I don’t want him starting but he’s a very solid backup and compared to the 20M we gave him last year, I can live with his salary being at 1/4 of that this year.    Pascal and MAC both tendered at 2.24M. I want to bring in Kenny Golladay or Allen Robinson and Pascal is JAG so he’s not falling into my future plans much. I’m a big fan of MAC and I wouldn’t mind seeing him play the Jack Doyle role. He’s a better blocker, has better hands, and is more explosive.    I may be lowballing some guys but I’d hate to fall into the trap of overvaluing our guys and keeping them just because you want to keep your own. Unfortunately, I think the five most important positions on the team also coincide with our five weakest positions on the team; QB, WR, CB, DE, and LT. Fortunately we’ve got a good cap situation and this is the perfect year to be needing a QB. 
    • If we let Walker Walk, (and I think it’s likely) it’s not because we want an upgrade.   It’s because we simply don’t play him enough.   I think East Street has the numbers in snaps, but I think Walker is roughly playing 25-30 percent of the snaps.   That’s it.    We can't pay him enough for that.   Some other team will PLAY him more so they will PAY him more.    When Walker is off the field, we are either playing a 4-2-5 or a 4-1-6.   Leonard plays basically 100 percent of the snaps and I think Oke is about 55-60 percent.     There is a method to our madness.  
    • I'm surprised some folks want to resign Walker. Imo we definitely need an upgrade.... I'd let him walk.
    • Colts have won one playoff game in 6 seasons. Some more losing seasons and this team is no longer even in the top half of NFL franchises. They would be mostly irrelevant. I can’t imagine Irsay going for that.   Ballard is definitely safe...but this is year 5 and I am assuming there is a bit more urgency than just waiting for the perfect opportunity to come along.
    • Supplement with draft picks. Ballard has had a few rookies playing significant snaps every year...so we could assume the same this year. Plus...you have some  younger players who could take a step forward next season.  Also...there’s player for player swaps that can be explored.   I think you could easily replace everyone on that list except Houston and Rhodes. And I would keep MAC as a cheap TE2.   A big FA contract will put a strain on the cap...which is why a rookie QB would be huge. But I also think this is their chance to spend on a premium non-QB position or two.   But another way to burn cap space is to re-sign a bunch of outgoing vets...essentially paying more money for the same team components (in many cases). If that was a list of FAs...I would probably be interested in a few of them at most. But that’s just me...and I am sure other teams will be interested in each of them on some level...so this seems like a great chance to shift some cap space to quality (instead of quantity) and accrue some comp draft capital...even if it’s mid-late Day 3 picks.
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