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WR Plan for 2022: Discussion and Poll (please read OP before voting)


WR Plan for 2022: Discussion and Poll (please read OP before voting)  

81 members have voted

  1. 1. (PLEASE READ OP BEFORE VOTING) - Assuming we keep 6 WRs, and assuming Pittman, Pierce, Campbell, and Dulin are locks if healthy, who are the other 2 WRs (pick two)?

    • A Free Agent yet to be signed? (please specify who from link/list provided)
    • TY (would need to be resigned)
    • Coutee
    • Harris
    • Strachan
    • Patmon
    • One of the current UDFAs (please specify from list provided)
    • One of the camp invites (please specify from list provided)
      0
    • Convert Hines to slot, and only keep 5 of the traditional WRs
  2. 2. Who starts at X?

    • Pierce (meaning Pitt plays slot, or we go 2 wide X)
    • Pittman
  3. 3. Given Pierce's abundance of deep "go" route use in Cinci, and Pitt's #2 rating among NFL WRs in contested catches, will we see more deep passing this year.

  4. 4. How many yards will Pierce have his rook season?

  5. 5. How many games does Campbell play this season?

  6. 6. Does TY return to try to attain 10K career yards?


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  • Poll closed on 06/10/2022 at 04:46 AM

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12 hours ago, EastStreet said:

Z's don't have to do anything, but when one thinks of a traditional Z, it's the position that one thinks of motion and advanced routes. And we all no motion is one of the better tools which allows QBs to read Ds that are disguised. So if a WR is not motioning, is not running advanced routes, and is simply playing outside (back-shoulder, come-backs, go-routes), he's really not a "Z"

Yes.  I think of Z as the boiler plate academic description of a receiver's role in the offense.  And I don't think every team has a true Z on its roster, because of some shortcoming the receivers have.  True Z's, that also have some size, or are Jamar Chase, are top 20 picks.  Thinking in terms of Advanced Routes and Non Advanced Routes is more applicable to what most teams can do, IMO.   Certain types of routes may not happen much given the size/speed/agility/experience make up of the receiver group.  Pierce will start by running a lot of NonAdvanced routes, but with deep speed consistently on the field...and that has been the main ingredient missing from the O for a while

 

There have been some comments that suggested that Pierce was selected because we want a bunch of X receivers or ones that run NonAdvanced routes.  I think he was selected because he was the best receiver available....that had deep speed which was the number one trait we were looking for this draft.  The offense will then be a product of what the WR group can do and can't do more so than some rigid coaching ideology...JMO.  I think Marcus Brady and Matt Ryan will play a big role in how the offense evolves over the season as they see how the influx of three talented receivers....we've gotten THREE more talented guys than we had last year..... impacts the O.  Also Including a more experienced Dulin more early on.

 

Also, I think AP is going to be used as a nonadvanced route guy, but who is expected to score from those routes.  He's not a nonadvanced route "possession" WR.   Kinda like JT, who is not really a shake and bake runner or a move the chains type of runner, but is expected to score a TD during the limited types of running "patterns" that are called.  AP has straight line speed, and just like JT, his usage will reflect that, IMO.

 

 

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12 hours ago, EastStreet said:

TY's route variety was much more diverse until Luck left. You can see his route charts if interested on Nextgen. IMO he could still be very productive running more diverse routes, instead of possession type routes we've seen him given the past few years. He's an elite route runner, and IMO was misused by being limited to come-backs, back shoulders, etc.. And him at slot or simple slants could easily still be a mismatch vs LBs and SSs. 

IDK.  I think TY dropped off when he lost Reggie and then Ebron, where the O could not produce a viable option opposite him.  Those aspects also emerged at the same time Luck left.

 

If we want to use TYs career as a judge of what Pierce might do, check out how bad TYs RAS score is.  Not bashing him because he was a great WR, but it belies what you see here:

 

t.y.-hilton-ras-10264.png?resize=806,522

 

His shuttle and 3 cone are nearly identical to APs...but awarded a poor score because he's only 5'9, where as AP produced those times despite being 6 inches taller, with a better vertical.  If you think TY was a great route runner (and I'm not sure I agree...I think his game centered totally around having exceptional speed)...then we should be encouraged that AP could be a great route runner too.

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1 hour ago, runthepost said:

Harden is still a top 20-30 player, TY isn’t a top 20-30 WR anymore

Point is we don't need TY to be like he was 3 or 4 years ago. We just need someone that knows our system and can give us maybe 5 good games or so which is very possible. Campbell hasn't proved he can stay healthy, Dulin, Patmon or Strachan have never proven to be better than TY. I trust Pittman and I think Pierce will be good, other than that I don't see any other WR on the team that would be better than TY. Pushing him out the door just because he is average now and not very good to great like he was isn't smart. We can probably sign him for real cheap as well. So I say why not? Too many people banking on Campbell staying healthy and Patmon and Strachan being good all of the sudden - those are huge gambles.

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11 hours ago, EastStreet said:
  • Pittman
    • Traditional X but was very productive out of the slot in both college and last season with the Colts.
    • A bit slower than Pierce (40), but much better agility (3 cone, short shuttle) than Pierce.
    • Good route runner, good speed for his size, climbs the ladder well and was #2 in the league in contested catches.
    • He could easily be at least a #2 at X or slot for the majority of teams in the NFL.
    • He was our #1 last season purely out of need. For the most part, the majority of #1s in the league are not Xs. They can be, but more often a #2 than #1. Reich has been possession heavy the last few years, so Pitt could easily remain our #1 given his YAC has been good. 
  • Pierce
    • Played almost exclusively at X, and was extremely limited in terms of route diversity. 
      • Almost the entirety of his highlights were straight sideline go-routes (9s). Virtually no short/mid come-backs, back shoulders, etc.. And rarely used across the middle (only one deep slant).
      • In short, he's got a lot to learn if he wants to be a starter or an every down guy.
    • While his speed and vert are great for his size, his agility (3 cone, shuttle) weren't great. Not to say he can't improve in this area, but he never ran the routes that would develop these characteristics. 
    • If he can learn a few new routes, but more importantly learn and get good timing with Ryan, than his chances of early PT go up dramatically.
    • If you don't have the patience, I recommend spending a few minutes watching his senior year highlights I included in the OP. Some great stuff, but extremely limited use. 
  • Campbell
    • He's simply a big if in terms of health.
    • If he is healthy though, he's probably the fastest, most agile, and most fluid route runner on our team right now. So his measurables/skill/experience likely make him odds on favorite to start at the traditional Z spot. 
    • His production when healthy and when inserted fully into the game plan, was pretty productive. Small sample size, and a big if. 
    • So in short, if healthy, he'll be one of "the" guys out of the gate. I'd guess Z, but slot is not out of the question. He'd play both regardless, but I think his skillset and injury history screams primary Z. 
  • Dulin 
    • A few years in the system now, which is a big advantage over a rook.
    • Early on, and to an extent still, was used to do the dirty work (likely to allow Pascal to be more of a receiving threat). Was the primary "rub" guy, and ran a lot of straight clear outs for the WR running routes 3 through 6 (ins, outs, come-backs, hitches). And someone who is both willing, and good at the dirty work, has good value as on a lot of routes/play-calls, someone is tasked with the dirty work (not really a target). 
    • Dulin has better agility scores/ras than Pierce. IMO if his route running has developed, he's got a good combo of speed (4.43), size (215/6-1), and agility, and would be a good candidate for slot. 

Instead of textbook Z and X and Slot.  Maybe think of it as Big Play or Possession.

 

Pittman:  NonAdvanced routes but with some agility to do more.  A true "possession" receiver that can get open with various scenarios and patterns given his size and agility...has the speed to make some deep plays...but is not really possess the deep speed to be a home run hitter (4.5?).  NonAdvanced/Advanced route running Possession receiver.

 

Pierce: NonAdvanced route runner with deep speed to score from the outside.  The quickest path from point A to B is a straight line, or a skinny post, post, etc.  Because of size and verticals he can be used in possession situations, but that's not the main intent.  Making big plays from slower developing complex routes (not efficiently running towards the end zone) is not the plan at this time.  NonAdvanced route running Big Play receiver.

 

Campbell:  Possesses the agility to run Advanced routes.   Slower developing, more complex routes, but has the agility and speed to get YAC from those routes.  Advanced route running Big Play receiver.

 

Patmon/Strauchen.  Nonadvanced route running Possession receivers.

 

Dulin:  Nonadvanced route Big Play receiver...but has some agility to develop into advanced routes big play receiver with more experience.   

 

Campbell is one of a kind, and will man the slot.  But it will be shared with  Granson, Woods, or Hines depending upon the defenses played. 

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33 minutes ago, 2006Coltsbestever said:

Point is we don't need TY to be like he was 3 or 4 years ago. We just need someone that knows our system and can give us maybe 5 good games or so which is very possible. Campbell hasn't proved he can stay healthy, Dulin, Patmon or Strachan have never proven to be better than TY. I trust Pittman and I think Pierce will be good, other than that I don't see any other WR on the team that would be better than TY. Pushing him out the door just because he is average now and not very good to great like he was isn't smart. We can probably sign him for real cheap as well. So I say why not? Too many people banking on Campbell staying healthy and Patmon and Strachan being good all of the sudden - those are huge gambles.

 

  You want to bet against Reich being able to put a good enough offense on the field without TY. Betting against those three, and his TE's, and Hines etc.
  TY has always had so little game, just Luck bombing away for 4-5 games a season, always against lowly Houston. I truly can not imagine a worse idea.

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I think Pittman and Pierce will rotate on the X with Pittman serving as big slot in certain situations and Pierce serving as Z in certain situations. What would this mean?

 

Last year Pittman played 88% of the snaps and I expect him to get about similar load this coming season with him getting big part of his snaps at X and when he's not deployed at X, I can see him moved inside as a big/shifty slot(the role he excelled at in the back end of his rookie year).

 

Pierce IMO will be deployed everywhere - when Pittman is not at X, IMO Pierce will get a good look at those remaining X snaps... When Pittman is at X, Pierce probably goes out wide on the other side and acts as a field stretching Z. I can also see him getting some vertical slot snaps trying to abuse some lesser athletes in mismatches - slot CBs, safeties... LBs.. BTW... are we actually sure Pierce can't do motion? I know he was not asked to do that in college, but can Frank surprise us here and at least try him out there and try to manufacture some offense for him? For example, he did that with Pittman by moving him to slot a lot in the second part of his rookie year after he struggled at X in the beginning, which gave him some good opportunities to bump up his confidence and production level? 

 

I think they still have hopes for Cambpell to stay healthy but IMO this will be his last shot and if he does stay healthy, I can see him being employed both from the slot and as a Z. 

 

Dulin will take whatever remains... 

 

Patmon and Strachan will likely be depth pieces who see the field only when there are injuries... well... unless they take a massive step forward this year and Frank shows more trust in them, which he didn't last year, despite us having a strong need there for most of the season. 

 

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On 5/8/2022 at 10:37 PM, Smonroe said:


Don’t rule him out.  They want him to get his 10k.   It’s probably a contract and expectations talk now.  
 

We need a vet like him.

 

Just a few years ago, I really wanted to see Vinatieri become the first kicker in NFL History to kick 600 FGs. And, I really wanted to see him do it in a Colts uniform... but, his age/injuries got to a point where his performance was being hindered to the point where it was in the best interest of the Colts organization to move on.. Vinny is a sure fire HOFer, TY is not a HOFer.

 

As much as it'd be cool to see him get 10k yards, for the Colts to become the first franchise to have 3 10k guys, etc.. sadly, I'm afraid it's time for us to move on from TY.

 

The only way I see us bringing him back is on a very cheap contract (signed soon), or if we sign him early in the season if Campbell or someone else goes down. 

 

On 5/8/2022 at 11:14 PM, 2006Coltsbestever said:

Everyone counting TY out, the 3rd best WR in Indianapolis history. People counted out Harden out and he scored 31 tonight with 10 assists to tie the series up vs Miami = basketball. TY will be back - it is called Vet leadership and playing big in big games. TY is great for what we need him to do and for 4 or 5 games at least.

Harden is still playing at a pretty elite level. TY has been declining for at least 3 seasons now. Silly comparison.

 

 

----

I voted Strachan and Patmon, though I am thinking Patmon may be a goner. 

 

Pitt to start at X.

 

Ryan to throw more deep balls. Not sure it'll be a ton, but with the addition of Pierce, and the assumption that Dulin will be used at WR more, we have 2 guys with size and straight away speed and with Ryan's arm it would make 0 sense to not see more deep balls.

 

Pierce 601-700 yards. I wouldn't be shocked at more, but I think Pittman will be our clear #1 (unless we sign Landry, OBJ or Jones, which I don't see happening) and we'll see a good amount of spreading the ball around otherwise. I think Ryan will have solid numbers though I don't see the WR/TE group after Pitt to have spectacular individual stats.

 

As I said above, I don't think TY is coming back unless it's on a very cheap deal or if Campbell gets hurt.

 

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1 hour ago, throwing BBZ said:

 

  You want to bet against Reich being able to put a good enough offense on the field without TY. Betting against those three, and his TE's, and Hines etc.
  TY has always had so little game, just Luck bombing away for 4-5 games a season, always against lowly Houston. I truly can not imagine a worse idea.

I just don't see why it would hurt bringing TY back with the WR room we have. Pittman is good, Pierce has the potential to be good, Hines IMO will have a great year at catching passes, outside of that who is better than TY on this roster that you can trust? Campbell should be the man by the now playing slot but he can't stay healthy. Dulin, Patmon, and Strachan are #4's at best and probably would be lucky to make 10-15 rosters in the league. This has nothing to do with me liking TY or his past resume, but the last 3 guys I just named aren't better than TY and TY is average right now I will admit. 

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1 hour ago, CurBeatElite said:

 

Just a few years ago, I really wanted to see Vinatieri become the first kicker in NFL History to kick 600 FGs. And, I really wanted to see him do it in a Colts uniform... but, his age/injuries got to a point where his performance was being hindered to the point where it was in the best interest of the Colts organization to move on.. Vinny is a sure fire HOFer, TY is not a HOFer.

 

As much as it'd be cool to see him get 10k yards, for the Colts to become the first franchise to have 3 10k guys, etc.. sadly, I'm afraid it's time for us to move on from TY.

 

The only way I see us bringing him back is on a very cheap contract (signed soon), or if we sign him early in the season if Campbell or someone else goes down. 

 

Harden is still playing at a pretty elite level. TY has been declining for at least 3 seasons now. Silly comparison.

 

 

----

I voted Strachan and Patmon, though I am thinking Patmon may be a goner. 

 

Pitt to start at X.

 

Ryan to throw more deep balls. Not sure it'll be a ton, but with the addition of Pierce, and the assumption that Dulin will be used at WR more, we have 2 guys with size and straight away speed and with Ryan's arm it would make 0 sense to not see more deep balls.

 

Pierce 601-700 yards. I wouldn't be shocked at more, but I think Pittman will be our clear #1 (unless we sign Landry, OBJ or Jones, which I don't see happening) and we'll see a good amount of spreading the ball around otherwise. I think Ryan will have solid numbers though I don't see the WR/TE group after Pitt to have spectacular individual stats.

 

As I said above, I don't think TY is coming back unless it's on a very cheap deal or if Campbell gets hurt.

 

Harden is good but hasn't been great since he was a Rocket. That has been over 2 years ago. I would sign TY so we will agree to disagree, see my post above. 

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15 minutes ago, 2006Coltsbestever said:

Harden is good but hasn't been great since he was a Rocket. That has been over 2 years ago. I would sign TY so we will agree to disagree, see my post above. 

24-8-11 last year

22-8-10 this year. Sure his shooting was worse but the drop off isn’t that bad. 

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1 minute ago, runthepost said:

24-8-11 last year

22-8-10 this year. Sure his shooting was worse but the drop off isn’t that bad. 

Yeah but when he played for the Rockets he won an MVP and could score 30 in his sleep. Like I said he is still good but nobody thinks he is a top 20 player now. 3 years ago he was arguably top 5. I don't write him off though because he still has moments like in Game 4 vs the Heat. TY IMO could still have 4 or 5 games where he dominates with Matt at QB. I just don't see TY being washed up and I think he can play 1 more year.

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2 hours ago, 2006Coltsbestever said:

I just don't see why it would hurt bringing TY back with the WR room we have. Pittman is good, Pierce has the potential to be good, Hines IMO will have a great year at catching passes, outside of that who is better than TY on this roster that you can trust? Campbell should be the man by the now playing slot but he can't stay healthy. Dulin, Patmon, and Strachan are #4's at best and probably would be lucky to make 10-15 rosters in the league. This has nothing to do with me liking TY or his past resume, but the last 3 guys I just named aren't better than TY and TY is average right now I will admit. 

 

I agree that our roster isn't very strong (at least not proven yet anyway) at WR. I have said numerous times that I'm not convinced Pittman is a true #1 and wouldn't be a number 1 on most teams and wouldn't be a number two on a handful of teams. Behind him, Parris has shown the most but he can't stay healthy.  I don't really trust Strachan, Dulin, Patmon to be legit #2s or 3s, either.. though, I'm very happy we got Pierce.

 

That said, I don't trust TY would be any more productive than them. You're saying he's got 4-5 good games in him. Why would we want to sign a person who we are counting on for less than ¹/3 or 1/4 of the season? That makes 0 sense to give a roster spot to someone who we think might be able to play well for that low of a portion of the season. Even at that, I'd venture to guess TY would be good for maybe 4-5 plays or less per game if the past couple seasons are any indication. 

 

2 hours ago, 2006Coltsbestever said:

Harden is good but hasn't been great since he was a Rocket. That has been over 2 years ago. I would sign TY so we will agree to disagree, see my post above. 

 

Harden went from playing at an MVP level to a very high level but not quite MVP within about 2 years... 

 

TY has never played at an MVP level and the past 3 years he has been average at best, trending downwards towards time to hang them up...

 

We can agree to disagree, but your initial comparison was silly and your attempt to justify it was weak.

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15 minutes ago, CurBeatElite said:

 

I agree that our roster isn't very strong (at least not proven yet anyway) at WR. I have said numerous times that I'm not convinced Pittman is a true #1 and wouldn't be a number 1 on most teams and wouldn't be a number two on a handful of teams. Behind him, Parris has shown the most but he can't stay healthy.  I don't really trust Strachan, Dulin, Patmon to be legit #2s or 3s, either.. though, I'm very happy we got Pierce.

 

That said, I don't trust TY would be any more productive than them. You're saying he's got 4-5 good games in him. Why would we want to sign a person who we are counting on for less than ¹/3 or 1/4 of the season? That makes 0 sense to give a roster spot to someone who we think might be able to play well for that low of a portion of the season. Even at that, I'd venture to guess TY would be good for maybe 4-5 plays or less per game if the past couple seasons are any indication. 

 

 

Harden went from playing at an MVP level to a very high level but not quite MVP within about 2 years... 

 

TY has never played at an MVP level and the past 3 years he has been average at best, trending downwards towards time to hang them up...

 

We can agree to disagree, but your initial comparison was silly and your attempt to justify it was weak.

The comparison between TY and Harden was based on people saying both are washed up. Harden has been getting ripped to shreds by the media lately and most say he isn't nowhere the player he used to be, that is what my comparison is based on. TY has had a couple of great years and a very good career. Of course he has never been MVP level, there isn't 1 WR in history to win a MVP. Kupp didn't even come close in votes compared to Rodgers. Football is a different sport by a mile. TY is the 3rd best WR that has played in Indianapolis (Ray Berry was Baltimore) so he is elite all-time with our franchise.

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On 5/8/2022 at 8:18 PM, EastStreet said:

 

Please read OP (original post below) before voting in the poll. 

 

I'm totally in the Vinnie Barbarino zone (John Travolta's Welcome Back Kotter  character - "I'm so confused" if you don't get the reference) right now in terms of what we're doing at WR, so thought it might be a good topic for a thread. I really have zero clue what to expect in terms of positions (who will be X, Z, slot), scheme, etc.. Just a lot of questions how current personnel fits, and if we chose to add someone.

 

Big Questions and Topics (at least for me)

  • How does Alec Pierce fit? He played X at Cinci, where he had very very few snaps at slot. His highlights (below) are almost all outside "go" routes straight and deep up the field. Only one slant that I recall. Does he go to X? Nothing about him aside from speed matches typical Z characteristics. 
    • Highly recommend watching his highlights, to see purely how he was used. 
  • How will Pittman fit in? Does he go more to slot? He played 20ish% at slot last season, and clearly has more experience there than Pierce, as well as better agility (short shuttle and 3 cone). 
  • Where does Campbell fit? Does he take over at Z while playing a little slot too?
  • Do we go 2 X type WRs out wide with Pittman and Pierce and forget about traditional Z type play? Our Zs last year played more possession ball than typical Z type routes anyway?
  • We're overstocked on "bigs". With both Pittman and Pierce, what does that say for Patmon and Strachan? Likely have to move on from one if we want a well rounded roster. 
  • Assuming we keep 6, and Pittman, Pierce, Campbell, and Dulin are givens, who are the other 2?
  • Is TY gone for good?

 

WR Options

  • Roster (likely locks if healthy)
    • Pittman
    • Pierce
    • Campbell
    • Dulin (just resigned, and has high STs value)
  • Roster (but ?)
    • Patmon
    • Strachan
    • Coutee
    • Harris
  • Not on Roster
  • UDFAs
    • Kekoa Crawford, WR Cal
    • Samson Nacua, WR BYU
    • Michael Young Jr., WR Cincinnati
  • Camp invites
    • Jackson Anthrop, WR Purdue
    • Tim Wilson Jr., WR Southeastern Louisiana

 

 

 

 

I really have no clue what they are going to do, but I do think that WR positions are no longer as rigid as they were.

 

Guys are lining up in different places more as coaches try to get personnel in positions that they think will take advantage of the defense.  Take a look at Kupp for instance. You'd think slot and before this season, he was basicly a slot receiver, but this season he was more of an outside guy.  He doesn't look like your traditional X guy to me.  He looks like an old school slot kid who despite a poor 40 seems to be losing corners even when he's lined up on the boundary.   Woods is the same way.  HE lines up in the slot and outside at roughly the same rate.  He's a z you'd think even though his 40 isn't great.

 

I think the traditional position designations are  losing some of the rigidity.

 

That being said, you'd hope you have a deep guy, a guy over the middle, and a guy that can break it off on the intermediate routes or break it in, traditionally z, slot, and X. 

 

I never thought Pittman had the athleticism of a great X receiver, or the route running of a great slot guy, or the speed for a z;  but when you put it all together, he's got elements of each.

 

SO i wasn't very good at your poll, but I expect to see Pittman, Pierce, and Campbell moved around alot and I don't see any of them as pure traditional receiver designations. 

 

Campbell was a slot, and I think he's in his limited time run more z type routes.  it will be interesting to see what he has left with the injuries. I remember in camp last year I thought he didn't look ready.  The practice I saw he only succeeded in go routes, then in his limited time, I think he had some success running down field. 

 

I just wish we had a great route runner.  I think that is what it will take for the Colts to jump a level.  I don't know that we have that kind of guy on the roster, and the good ones are really hard to come by. I perosnally would have liked to see them take a big chance on OBJ.  Maybe they did, but I never heard it. 

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1 hour ago, 2006Coltsbestever said:

The comparison between TY and Harden was based on people saying both are washed up. Harden has been getting ripped to shreds by the media lately and most say he isn't nowhere the player he used to be, that is what my comparison is based on. TY has had a couple of great years and a very good career. Of course he has never been MVP level, there isn't 1 WR in history to win a MVP. Kupp didn't even come close in votes compared to Rodgers. Football is a different sport by a mile. TY is the 3rd best WR that has played in Indianapolis (Ray Berry was Baltimore) so he is elite all-time with our franchise.

Lol, Marv is a HOFer, Reggie will be a HOFer. TY is not going to be a HOFer and likely won't ever be a finalist. He's on a lower level than Marv and Reg.  

 

MVP aside, TY has never been the best WR in the league. He was 20th in receptions once and 10th once. He's never been top 20 in receptions in any other season. He led the league in yards 1x (the same season he was 10th in receptions, which is the only time in his career he could legit be argued as a top 5 wr).

 

Your logic that people say both are washed up makes a little bit of sense, but they're really not comparable.. aside from that, I'm still lost with your argument that we should sign ty so he can maybe be good for 4-5 games. 

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12 minutes ago, CurBeatElite said:

Lol, Marv is a HOFer, Reggie will be a HOFer. TY is not going to be a HOFer and likely won't ever be a finalist. He's on a lower level than Marv and Reg.  

 

MVP aside, TY has never been the best WR in the league. He was 20th in receptions once and 10th once. He's never been top 20 in receptions in any other season. He led the league in yards 1x (the same season he was 10th in receptions, which is the only time in his career he could legit be argued as a top 5 wr).

 

Your logic that people say both are washed up makes a little bit of sense, but they're really not comparable.. aside from that, I'm still lost with your argument that we should sign ty so he can maybe be good for 4-5 games. 

 

 TY Historically got 40% of his seasons yards in 4-5 games (Texans).
And that was because Andrew forced the deep ball to him (over targeted him) often in double coverage, rather than throw to other (very open) receivers. HE MADE TY look better than he was. 

 Him taking a single snap from our 2nd year players is boooooo.
 Hire him as a ra ra coach.  I of course mean this in the nicest possible way Mrs. TY and to those that love him.  :number1:

 

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10 hours ago, DougDew said:

Yes.  I think of Z as the boiler plate academic description of a receiver's role in the offense.  And I don't think every team has a true Z on its roster, because of some shortcoming the receivers have.  True Z's, that also have some size, or are Jamar Chase, are top 20 picks.  Thinking in terms of Advanced Routes and Non Advanced Routes is more applicable to what most teams can do, IMO.   Certain types of routes may not happen much given the size/speed/agility/experience make up of the receiver group.  Pierce will start by running a lot of NonAdvanced routes, but with deep speed consistently on the field...and that has been the main ingredient missing from the O for a while

 

There have been some comments that suggested that Pierce was selected because we want a bunch of X receivers or ones that run NonAdvanced routes.  I think he was selected because he was the best receiver available....that had deep speed which was the number one trait we were looking for this draft.  The offense will then be a product of what the WR group can do and can't do more so than some rigid coaching ideology...JMO.  I think Marcus Brady and Matt Ryan will play a big role in how the offense evolves over the season as they see how the influx of three talented receivers....we've gotten THREE more talented guys than we had last year..... impacts the O.  Also Including a more experienced Dulin more early on.

 

Also, I think AP is going to be used as a nonadvanced route guy, but who is expected to score from those routes.  He's not a nonadvanced route "possession" WR.   Kinda like JT, who is not really a shake and bake runner or a move the chains type of runner, but is expected to score a TD during the limited types of running "patterns" that are called.  AP has straight line speed, and just like JT, his usage will reflect that, IMO.

 

Like I've said in a few posts and the OP, I'm just totally confused and don't know what to expect. 

I know the "types" or labels well, and honestly don't care if we "fit" the traditional mode of Os. 

 

What I do care about, is that we develop the WRs correctly, tweak our O to fit their strengths/weaknesses, and make Ds defend the entire field. In the last several years, we really haven't done that under Reich. We've gone really short and possession, despite having guys that can do more. That's force fitting a bit, and not great development. Just really over conservative, and short on flexibility. 

 

At the end of the day, traditional Z type routes are simply required if you want to attack the entire field. Pierce was more or less a one trick pony in college, and there's questions about his agility. That's not to say he can't learn and evolve. Just means he's likely to look like an X in year one. 

 

Also, you commented on our primary WR need this year being a deep threat. I whole heartedly agree it was a big need. Not sure it was the biggest, but still big. So I'm very happy he brings that dimension. I'm just not sure Reich will use him that way given what we've seen of Reich's O. Keep in mind that Reich more or less force fit TY into a possession guy the last few years, and also tried to turn deep specialist Cain into a short possession guy. At least Pierce has the measurables to be a possession guy Reich tries to limit him. 

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10 hours ago, DougDew said:

IDK.  I think TY dropped off when he lost Reggie and then Ebron, where the O could not produce a viable option opposite him.  Those aspects also emerged at the same time Luck left.

 

If we want to use TYs career as a judge of what Pierce might do, check out how bad TYs RAS score is.  Not bashing him because he was a great WR, but it belies what you see here:

 

t.y.-hilton-ras-10264.png?resize=806,522

 

His shuttle and 3 cone are nearly identical to APs...but awarded a poor score because he's only 5'9, where as AP produced those times despite being 6 inches taller, with a better vertical.  If you think TY was a great route runner (and I'm not sure I agree...I think his game centered totally around having exceptional speed)...then we should be encouraged that AP could be a great route runner too.

 

TY wasn't a great route runner out of the gate, but he learned very fast. Super fast. He also was given the opportunity in a wide open offense to develop early. He was also considered very fluid in the draft, while some have called Pierce stiff. Given Reich's O is not near as dynamic as what TY walked into, I'd assume the develop chances will be much slower for Pierce. TY got near 100 targets in year one IIRC, and by year 2 was our #1 due to RW's injury. Pierce likely won't be used early as much. But I would say TY was an elite route runner by year 2. His cuts and timing were outstanding, which is why he was Luck's clear go-to by the end of year one and early year 2. 

 

Also, IIRC, RAS calcs have changed through the years in terms the way they grade by height, etc. And TY was easily a level up in terms of pure speed. 

 

Also to keep in mind, is that TY had 4 years of consistent production, including 1000+ yards in both his freshman and senior years. And his QB IIRC, was not on the level of Ridder. Pierce never hit 1000 despite being the obvious #1. That in itself doesn't mean Pierce can't be a stud, just means TY came in with a more productive and well rounded college resume despite the small school environment. Cinci isn't a P5, but they are close, and will be when they join the B12. FL Int was near the level of Cinci. 

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10 hours ago, DougDew said:

Instead of textbook Z and X and Slot.  Maybe think of it as Big Play or Possession.

 

Pittman:  NonAdvanced routes but with some agility to do more.  A true "possession" receiver that can get open with various scenarios and patterns given his size and agility...has the speed to make some deep plays...but is not really possess the deep speed to be a home run hitter (4.5?).  NonAdvanced/Advanced route running Possession receiver.

Incorrect. At least partially. He was known to be excellent for his size going in and out of breaks (route running). And was used as both X and slot at USC against better talent. His speed isn't elite, but it is good for a true X. Also consider that USC is considered somewhat of a WR factory. Great position coaching, great competition (internal and external), etc. 

 

Also, in terms of possession vs big play, I'd say he's both. He was great deep. He was #2 in the league in contested catches. When used deep, he was gold. 

 

10 hours ago, DougDew said:

 

Pierce: NonAdvanced route runner with deep speed to score from the outside.  The quickest path from point A to B is a straight line, or a skinny post, post, etc.  Because of size and verticals he can be used in possession situations, but that's not the main intent.  Making big plays from slower developing complex routes (not efficiently running towards the end zone) is not the plan at this time.  NonAdvanced route running Big Play receiver.

You assume you know the plan. We have not seen Reich's O put any focus on deep play. So not sure you can assume that's the plan for Pierce. 

 

10 hours ago, DougDew said:

 

Campbell:  Possesses the agility to run Advanced routes.   Slower developing, more complex routes, but has the agility and speed to get YAC from those routes.  Advanced route running Big Play receiver.

 

Patmon/Strauchen.  Nonadvanced route running Possession receivers.

 

Dulin:  Nonadvanced route Big Play receiver...but has some agility to develop into advanced routes big play receiver with more experience.   

He was used all over the place in college, but for a tiny, and bad program. I'm sure coaching wasn't great. IF they can coach him up and improve his crispness on route running / fluidity, he's got a high ceiling. He did look much improved later last season. Regardless, he's a very nice tweener with high STs value. So he'll get a chance to continue development. 

10 hours ago, DougDew said:

 

Campbell is one of a kind, and will man the slot.  But it will be shared with  Granson, Woods, or Hines depending upon the defenses played. 

I'd bet Campbell gets plenty of work outside if healthy. He went from 95% slot in 2020, to only 15% slot in 2021. Ballard was pretty clear about the plan for PC when drafted. They'd have to go full reverse if he goes back to primary slot. Not saying that won't happen, but given his injury history, putting him back at slot wouldn't be the smartest. 

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6 hours ago, Nickster said:

 

I really have no clue what they are going to do, but I do think that WR positions are no longer as rigid as they were.

I don't think they need to be rigid, but I think you simply need different types for a dynamic O, or for an O to make Ds defend the entire field horizontally and vertically. Ds simply didn't respect us at all beyond 15 yards last season. It was nauseating at times watching teams cheat up on us. 

6 hours ago, Nickster said:

Guys are lining up in different places more as coaches try to get personnel in positions that they think will take advantage of the defense.  Take a look at Kupp for instance. You'd think slot and before this season, he was basicly a slot receiver, but this season he was more of an outside guy.  He doesn't look like your traditional X guy to me.  He looks like an old school slot kid who despite a poor 40 seems to be losing corners even when he's lined up on the boundary.   Woods is the same way.  HE lines up in the slot and outside at roughly the same rate.  He's a z you'd think even though his 40 isn't great.

A lot of college slots turn into outside Zs in the NFL. Tyreek Hill, Kupp, and it was the plan for Parris too. Kupp, while playing slot in college, was elite in almost every way. Elite hands, elite route running, elite ball tracking. Given his size (6-2), not crazy to put him on the outside. He was considered a big/bully slot after all. Only and inch under Pitt. But I agree Kupp is a great example of a non-tradition WR. But he's also a bit of a unicorn in several ways. 

6 hours ago, Nickster said:

 

I think the traditional position designations are  losing some of the rigidity.

 

That being said, you'd hope you have a deep guy, a guy over the middle, and a guy that can break it off on the intermediate routes or break it in, traditionally z, slot, and X. 

I don't really want rigidity. I just want to attack the entire field. 

Ideally, you want every WR position to be able to line up everywhere, and all run a variety of routes. And that's exactly what Reich has preached. BUT, it simply hasn't materialized. 

 

Pitt has shown the ability to do almost everything. Deep and short, sideline and in the seam (inside and outside). He did it all in college too. And while we saw him do it all at times, it was skewed. PC, in his limited time, has proven he can go inside and out, short and deep. But again, skewed usage within the scheme. 

 

Hope Pierce develops into a guy that can go all over too, and just not an outside 9 guy. I do want to see plenty of outside 9s though. Need to stretch the field more. 

6 hours ago, Nickster said:

 

I never thought Pittman had the athleticism of a great X receiver, or the route running of a great slot guy, or the speed for a z;  but when you put it all together, he's got elements of each.

He's got plenty of speed to be an X or big slot. Not elite speed, but plenty good for a typical X. He's 4.52 IIRC. Kupp was 4.62.... Both play X and slot. Pitt gets into and out of breaks well, but Kupp is better in that area IMO. And Pitt has great hands and ball tracking. He was after all #2 in contested catches. 

6 hours ago, Nickster said:

 

SO i wasn't very good at your poll, but I expect to see Pittman, Pierce, and Campbell moved around alot and I don't see any of them as pure traditional receiver designations. 

Almost all schemes have WRs move around. Xs and big/bully slots are sorta interchangeable. Zs and traditional slots are kinda interchangeable. So naturally guys flex.

 

But you also have some schemes, or some players, that are either more rigid, or have "specialist" type WRs. OSU is known for being somewhat rigid in it's scheme, or for specializing. Other teams too. But some players are just really good at somethings, and not good at others. So they are simply limited in their use. 

 

I don't know where Pierce fits in that spectrum. But we do know that he was very limited in his used (outside and deep mostly). That doesn't mean he can't do other things. It either means Cinci's use of him was a product of scheme or talent on the roster. Could also mean he was great at some things, and not good at others. It'll take time to answer that question IMO. 

6 hours ago, Nickster said:

 

Campbell was a slot, and I think he's in his limited time run more z type routes.  it will be interesting to see what he has left with the injuries. I remember in camp last year I thought he didn't look ready.  The practice I saw he only succeeded in go routes, then in his limited time, I think he had some success running down field. 

PC was 95% slot in 2020, but 85% Z in 2021. KC did the same with Hill early in his career. It's a natural progression for a lot of fast slots. 

6 hours ago, Nickster said:

I just wish we had a great route runner.  I think that is what it will take for the Colts to jump a level.  I don't know that we have that kind of guy on the roster, and the good ones are really hard to come by. I perosnally would have liked to see them take a big chance on OBJ.  Maybe they did, but I never heard it. 

PC and Pitt both looked good to me in terms of route running last season. I have no idea what to expect for Pierce, only know he was very limited in college and some call him stiff. Only time will tell with him. Dulin was asked to do mostly dirty work early, but got some shots as an actual target later in the season. I thought he looked improved. But yes, I agree, I'd love to see us have a healthy, agile, and elite route runner on the team. That's why I was really surprised we didn't take Skyy Moore. 

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1 hour ago, EastStreet said:

I don't think they need to be rigid, but I think you simply need different types for a dynamic O, or for an O to make Ds defend the entire field horizontally and vertically. Ds simply didn't respect us at all beyond 15 yards last season. It was nauseating at times watching teams cheat up on us. 
 

 

Agree.  You and I have argued why this was the case but I agree it was the case.

1 hour ago, EastStreet said:

A lot of college slots turn into outside Zs in the NFL. Tyreek Hill, Kupp, and it was the plan for Parris too. Kupp, while playing slot in college, was elite in almost every way. Elite hands, elite route running, elite ball tracking. Given his size (6-2), not crazy to put him on the outside. He was considered a big/bully slot after all. Only and inch under Pitt. But I agree Kupp is a great example of a non-tradition WR. But he's also a bit of a unicorn in several ways. 
 

 

Kupps route running is baffling to defenders.  Kinda reminds me of Rice.   Similar 40 H and W.  But elite routes.

1 hour ago, EastStreet said:

I don't really want rigidity. I just want to attack the entire field. 

Ideally, you want every WR position to be able to line up everywhere, and all run a variety of routes. And that's exactly what Reich has preached. BUT, it simply hasn't materialized. 
 

 

personnel 

1 hour ago, EastStreet said:

 

Pitt has shown the ability to do almost everything. Deep and short, sideline and in the seam (inside and outside). He did it all in college too. And while we saw him do it all at times, it was skewed. PC, in his limited time, has proven he can go inside and out, short and deep. But again, skewed usage within the scheme. 

 

Hope Pierce develops into a guy that can go all over too, and just not an outside 9 guy. I do want to see plenty of outside 9s though. Need to stretch the field more. 

He's got plenty of speed to be an X or big slot. Not elite speed, but plenty good for a typical X. He's 4.52 IIRC. Kupp was 4.62.... Both play X and slot. Pitt gets into and out of breaks well, but Kupp is better in that area IMO. And Pitt has great hands and ball tracking. He was after all #2 in contested catches. 

Almost all schemes have WRs move around. Xs and big/bully slots are sorta interchangeable. Zs and traditional slots are kinda interchangeable. So naturally guys flex.

 

But you also have some schemes, or some players, that are either more rigid, or have "specialist" type WRs. OSU is known for being somewhat rigid in it's scheme, or for specializing. Other teams too. But some players are just really good at somethings, and not good at others. So they are simply limited in their use. 

 

I don't know where Pierce fits in that spectrum. But we do know that he was very limited in his used (outside and deep mostly). That doesn't mean he can't do other things. It either means Cinci's use of him was a product of scheme or talent on the roster. Could also mean he was great at some things, and not good at others. It'll take time to answer that question IMO. 
 

it be cool if he’s more diverse than he seems

1 hour ago, EastStreet said:

PC was 95% slot in 2020, but 85% Z in 2021. KC did the same with Hill early in his career. It's a natural progression for a lot of fast slots. 
 

Unfortunately small sample size but that’s how it felt with the slot to z.
never loved the signing as his routes were questionable but he’s shown flashes.  He’s a wild card.  Should he be healthy and ball out we would be in good shape.

1 hour ago, EastStreet said:

PC and Pitt both looked good to me in terms of route running last season. I have no idea what to expect for Pierce, only know he was very limited in college and some call him stiff. Only time will tell with him. Dulin was asked to do mostly dirty work early, but got some shots as an actual target later in the season. I thought he looked improved. But yes, I agree, I'd love to see us have a healthy, agile, and elite route runner on the team. That's why I was really surprised we didn't take Skyy Moore. 


I hope they know what they’re doing.  Moore looked like a a good choice but I know little about College guys

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8 hours ago, CurBeatElite said:

Lol, Marv is a HOFer, Reggie will be a HOFer. TY is not going to be a HOFer and likely won't ever be a finalist. He's on a lower level than Marv and Reg.  

 

MVP aside, TY has never been the best WR in the league. He was 20th in receptions once and 10th once. He's never been top 20 in receptions in any other season. He led the league in yards 1x (the same season he was 10th in receptions, which is the only time in his career he could legit be argued as a top 5 wr).

 

Your logic that people say both are washed up makes a little bit of sense, but they're really not comparable.. aside from that, I'm still lost with your argument that we should sign ty so he can maybe be good for 4-5 games. 

I never said TY is a Hall of Famer. I agree he isn't. Marv and Reggie are IMO. Having said that, TY had a very good career here. His stats don't lie. I still think he can be average this season. He is easily the 3rd best WR that has ever put on an Indianapolis uniform. Raymond Berry played in Baltimore and Dallas Clark was a TE. 

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38 minutes ago, Nickster said:

 

Agree.  You and I have argued why this was the case but I agree it was the case.

See below on your personnel reply

38 minutes ago, Nickster said:

 

Kupps route running is baffling to defenders.  Kinda reminds me of Rice.   Similar 40 H and W.  But elite routes.

Yup, that little hitch or bobble step he's got is incredible. Doesn't look overly complicated but it kills defenders even though he's not the fastest guy. I'm sure we'll see some other guys try to replicate in the future. 

38 minutes ago, Nickster said:

 

personnel 

Not sure if I agree. We've had fast guys that can run the 9. We've had guys with other great measurables that could have been utilized, at minimum as specialist. But instead we went all in Pascal because he was more or less a good blocker. Don't get me wrong, I like Pascal's workman attitude, but he wasn't fast, agile, have elite hands, etc.. He was an OK route runner. He just seemed to be the safe pick for snaps. 

 

Meanwhile, we force fit a deep specialist like Cain into a possession X role. We force fit TY after 2018 into a sideline possession guy. But overall, we had guys that could run simple 9s and could blow the top off of Ds. Hines could run a straight go. Harris too. Both had elite speed that could motion and blow the top off. Cain was never used like he was in college. And we have low 4.4s guys with agility as well that could slants and deep slants just fine. Heck, low 4.4s is plenty enough for 9s too against most DBs. 

 

IMO, we've just sided on the safe side the last couple years. 

38 minutes ago, Nickster said:

it be cool if he’s more diverse than he seems

Unfortunately small sample size but that’s how it felt with the slot to z.
never loved the signing as his routes were questionable but he’s shown flashes.  He’s a wild card.  Should he be healthy and ball out we would be in good shape.

PC came from OSU, which for a long time has been known as a scheme school relevant to WRs. But Campbell, even though OSU's scheme limited his routes, played at all 3 levels, and he was always considered very agile and fluid as a route runner. 

38 minutes ago, Nickster said:


I hope they know what they’re doing.  Moore looked like a a good choice but I know little about College guys

Moore was ranked by most ahead of Pierce. Not sure I've seen any stacks with AP ahead of SM. Not saying SM will become an all pro or anything, but he did seem to fit the needs we seem to be lacking. NFL.com ranked him highly in terms of WRs they believe will do well in year one. IIRC, he was their #1. AP did not make their list. Of course KC has Mahomes, so that helps. 

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6 hours ago, EastStreet said:

See below on your personnel reply

Yup, that little hitch or bobble step he's got is incredible. Doesn't look overly complicated but it kills defenders even though he's not the fastest guy. I'm sure we'll see some other guys try to replicate in the future. 

Not sure if I agree. We've had fast guys that can run the 9. We've had guys with other great measurables that could have been utilized, at minimum as specialist. But instead we went all in Pascal because he was more or less a good blocker. Don't get me wrong, I like Pascal's workman attitude, but he wasn't fast, agile, have elite hands, etc.. He was an OK route runner. He just seemed to be the safe pick for snaps. 

 

Meanwhile, we force fit a deep specialist like Cain into a possession X role. We force fit TY after 2018 into a sideline possession guy. But overall, we had guys that could run simple 9s and could blow the top off of Ds. Hines could run a straight go. Harris too. Both had elite speed that could motion and blow the top off. Cain was never used like he was in college. And we have low 4.4s guys with agility as well that could slants and deep slants just fine. Heck, low 4.4s is plenty enough for 9s too against most DBs. 

 

IMO, we've just sided on the safe side the last couple years. 

PC came from OSU, which for a long time has been known as a scheme school relevant to WRs. But Campbell, even though OSU's scheme limited his routes, played at all 3 levels, and he was always considered very agile and fluid as a route runner. 

Moore was ranked by most ahead of Pierce. Not sure I've seen any stacks with AP ahead of SM. Not saying SM will become an all pro or anything, but he did seem to fit the needs we seem to be lacking. NFL.com ranked him highly in terms of WRs they believe will do well in year one. IIRC, he was their #1. AP did not make their list. Of course KC has Mahomes, so that helps. 

I really thought Cain was going to be good but he’s not been able to stay on anyone’s sideline

there are lots of guys who can run nines. None of our personnel have that elite route running.  None of the pass catchers .

 

it seems Hines could be but either your feelings about Frank are correct on him OR he’s just not that kind of guy.  We were starving for a shifty slot guy that could shake open quickly last year with the state of the oline.  Many. Of us including you and meIIRC were saying Hines.

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12 hours ago, EastStreet said:

Incorrect. At least partially. He was known to be excellent for his size going in and out of breaks (route running). And was used as both X and slot at USC against better talent. His speed isn't elite, but it is good for a true X. Also consider that USC is considered somewhat of a WR factory. Great position coaching, great competition (internal and external), etc. 

 

Also, in terms of possession vs big play, I'd say he's both. He was great deep. He was #2 in the league in contested catches. When used deep, he was gold. 

That's what I meant.  Essentially, Pitt can....and will..... be used in all types of routes, except he doesn't have elite straight line speed. 

 

The other receivers are going to be more limited in what they can run, at least initially, with PC also a bit like Pittman having some better variety come day 1.

 

12 hours ago, EastStreet said:

You assume you know the plan. We have not seen Reich's O put any focus on deep play. So not sure you can assume that's the plan for Pierce. 

Pierce could certainly get his dose of possession routes.  I'm just assuming that Ballard and Frank and Reggie liked his 4.41 speed and tape for the obvious reasons.  Reportedly, Reggie really wanted Pierce, and Reggie was a possession guy for the most part, but we'll see where this goes.

 

The deep shots have been the missing ingredient in the offense for sure. I can't imagine that Marcus Brady's play designs won't have a deep route on most of them, so its a matter of where Ryan will throw the ball.  But last year the WRs didn't have the legs for it, before that Rivers didn't have the steady arm for it, and before that JB didn't have the guts to throw it.  So we'll see what happens with Brady's play designs and who Ryan chooses to throw the ball too now that all of the components of a deeper game are actually present at the same time.

12 hours ago, EastStreet said:

I'd bet Campbell gets plenty of work outside if healthy. He went from 95% slot in 2020, to only 15% slot in 2021. Ballard was pretty clear about the plan for PC when drafted. They'd have to go full reverse if he goes back to primary slot. Not saying that won't happen, but given his injury history, putting him back at slot wouldn't be the smartest. 

We have Pierce for the outside now.  I could see PC getting used on the outside in the past because of necessity....TY was unreliable and Pascal wasn't that guy.  With Pierce on board now, I don't know that last year's usage tendencies are going to hold.  I tend to think that PC will go back to what he was drafted to do, although I think all of the receivers will line up and do a variety of things.

 

And who knows, maybe PC balls out on the deep outside routes he runs and he just stays there as the season progresses.  Pierce gets that X spot and Pitt goes to slot because PC becomes just so good on the outside.  Then the rookie comes out, Woods or Granson or Hines comes in at slot, and Pitt goes to X.

 

Lots of things could happen for a number of reasons.  There is much more raw talent in the receiving room than last year.

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37 minutes ago, DougDew said:

That's what I meant.  Essentially, Pitt can....and will..... be used in all types of routes, except he doesn't have elite straight line speed. 

 

The other receivers are going to be more limited in what they can run, at least initially, with PC also a bit like Pittman having some better variety come day 1.

 

Pierce could certainly get his dose of possession routes.  I'm just assuming that Ballard and Frank and Reggie liked his 4.41 speed and tape for the obvious reasons.  Reportedly, Reggie really wanted Pierce, and Reggie was a possession guy for the most part, but we'll see where this goes.

 

The deep shots have been the missing ingredient in the offense for sure. I can't imagine that Marcus Brady's play designs won't have a deep route on most of them, so its a matter of where Ryan will throw the ball.  But last year the WRs didn't have the legs for it, before that Rivers didn't have the steady arm for it, and before that JB didn't have the guts to throw it.  So we'll see what happens with Brady's play designs and who Ryan chooses to throw the ball too now that all of the components of a deeper game are actually present at the same time.

We have Pierce for the outside now.  I could see PC getting used on the outside in the past because of necessity....TY was unreliable and Pascal wasn't that guy.  With Pierce on board now, I don't know that last year's usage tendencies are going to hold.  I tend to think that PC will go back to what he was drafted to do, although I think all of the receivers will line up and do a variety of things.

 

And who knows, maybe PC balls out on the deep outside routes he runs and he just stays there as the season progresses.  Pierce gets that X spot and Pitt goes to slot because PC becomes just so good on the outside.  Then the rookie comes out, Woods or Granson or Hines comes in at slot, and Pitt goes to X.

 

Lots of things could happen for a number of reasons.  There is much more raw talent in the receiving room than last year.

 

  Picture any 3 of Pittman, Pierce, Hines, Campbell, lined up with Woods, and Ryan looking at the matchups and ...    :rock: Yes you gotta give them 5 games to polish it... and then yippeee!   

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9 minutes ago, throwing BBZ said:

 

  Picture any 3 of Pittman, Pierce, Hines, Campbell, lined up with Woods, and Ryan looking at the matchups and ...    :rock: Yes you gotta give them 5 games to polish it... and then yippeee!   

Whose Woods? Just asking. Robert Woods signed with the Titans I do know that.

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For whatever it's worth, Matt Bowen has a new article in which he has the Alec Pierce pick as one of his favorite fits from the draft. Here's what he writes:

 

https://www.espn.com/nfl/insider/draft2022/insider/story/_/id/33891791/nfl-draft-2022-best-team-fits-top-rookies-perfect-landing-spots-midround-steals-early-impact-potential

 

Quote

 

Alec Pierce, WR, Indianapolis Colts

Drafted: Round 2, No. 53

 

Why he is a perfect fit: Pierce is a boundary X target for quarterback Matt Ryan who can also shift inside to create matchups out of slot or trips sets, making him a really good fit for Frank Reich's offense. He is at his best on the move -- running fades, overs, shallows and speed outs -- and the Colts can scheme up Pierce off play-action for Ryan. Watch for them to create windows at the second level or isolate the rookie as a vertical target.

With his foot quickness and play strength, Pierce can set up press coverage, and we know he can be a primary option for Ryan inside the red zone. Throw the slants there and cater to Pierce's 6-foot-3 frame and leaping ability on end zone targets, and I expect Pierce's route tree to expand even more in a pro system.

 

 

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At this point I hope T.Y. re-signs with the team. That room would benefit from watching how he does things, and even if he plays half the games, I think he will have an impact, and he (and the the team) will benefit from Matty Ice back there. I'm not sure if TY would go for it, but an incentive based contract might be the best route. 

 

I've been saying/posting it for years, but I've wanted them to use Hines in the slot. He's got great hands, the speed to get great YAC and he's got that spin move dialed. 

 

I'm excited to see what Pierce can do as well. I hope he can develop his cuts and isn't just a one trick pony only running deep routes. I also hope drafting him was the better idea compared to Skyy Moore who was picked right after.

 

Lastly, I really really really hope Campbell can stay healthy this year. That would be a huge boost to this WR room if he can. 

 

 

 

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11 hours ago, Nickster said:

I really thought Cain was going to be good but he’s not been able to stay on anyone’s sideline

there are lots of guys who can run nines. None of our personnel have that elite route running.  None of the pass catchers .

 

it seems Hines could be but either your feelings about Frank are correct on him OR he’s just not that kind of guy.  We were starving for a shifty slot guy that could shake open quickly last year with the state of the oline.  Many. Of us including you and meIIRC were saying Hines.

 

Given we have JT who is both elite running and catching, IMO there is simply no reason we shouldn't try and develop Hines to take snaps at WR. Not saying we should make him a full time WR, but he's one of our best weapons, and he needs to be on the field. It was a total waste signing him to a top 10 RB contract, then reducing his snaps last year.

 

And sure, a lot of guys can run 9s including guys on our roster. But we just didn't for whatever reason.... 

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10 hours ago, DougDew said:

The deep shots have been the missing ingredient in the offense for sure. I can't imagine that Marcus Brady's play designs won't have a deep route on most of them, so its a matter of where Ryan will throw the ball.  But last year the WRs didn't have the legs for it, before that Rivers didn't have the steady arm for it, and before that JB didn't have the guts to throw it.  So we'll see what happens with Brady's play designs and who Ryan chooses to throw the ball too now that all of the components of a deeper game are actually present at the same time.

Like Wentz and Ryan last year, Rivers was top 10 in deep ball accuracy, and like the others, weren't top half of the league in deep ball attempts. So not so sure the issue was JB's confidence/guts, or simply Reich's play calling. Regardless, for the last two years our QBs have been top 10 in deep ball success rate, but bottom half in deep ball attempts. That screams play calling, and screams it loud. 

 

And sorry, we had guys last season that could run 9s and deep slants. Those are two of the easier routes. Neither were a regular part of the game plan. 

 

10 hours ago, DougDew said:

We have Pierce for the outside now.  I could see PC getting used on the outside in the past because of necessity....TY was unreliable and Pascal wasn't that guy.  With Pierce on board now, I don't know that last year's usage tendencies are going to hold.  I tend to think that PC will go back to what he was drafted to do, although I think all of the receivers will line up and do a variety of things.

LOL..  PC was 85% outside. Ballard specifically said when drafted, the plan was to start him at slot year one, and them move him outside. That's exactly what happened. He went from 5% outside in 2020, to 85% outside in 2021. It was the plan, not necessity. I'm not going to ignore both last year's usage and Ballard explicit comments. Sure, PC could end up back inside, but most would expect him to be mostly outside, while the rook is worked in. 

10 hours ago, DougDew said:

 

And who knows, maybe PC balls out on the deep outside routes he runs and he just stays there as the season progresses.  Pierce gets that X spot and Pitt goes to slot because PC becomes just so good on the outside.  Then the rookie comes out, Woods or Granson or Hines comes in at slot, and Pitt goes to X.

 

Lots of things could happen for a number of reasons.  There is much more raw talent in the receiving room than last year.

IMO, the year will start (unless TY comes back) with Pitt (X), Dulin (slot), and PC (Z). Pierce will be the 4th WR and be worked in on both sides outside, allowing Pitt to move in (like he's done), and to give both Pitt and PC breathers. That will be a healthy amount of early snaps to get his feet wet. AP won't be an every down guy to start the year. That is, unless someone is injured. 

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On 5/9/2022 at 10:23 PM, Fluke_33 said:

Even if your premise is accurate that he is one of the most talented on the team, experience  means a lot at that position.  Don’t hold your breath on him starting.  Not many wrs do right out of the gate.  
 

I hope you are right though because that would mean we have a true star in the making. 

If he doesn't we're in big trouble. Again, who would start instead of him? He'd have to completely suck not to start. 

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Aspects of WR's game...(just my own list off the top of my head)

 

These are numbered, but that has nothing to do with their level of importance. 

 

1 - Hands - The ability to catch clean, away from the body, and quickly secure the ball. Tracking rotation, catching the tip in the        center of the hand, etc...

2 - Body control - Bumping legally to create separation, moving your bulk in a way that defies defending, timing your jump for the catch, toe tapping, the ability to hit the ground in the least damaging way possible, relocate catch zone when getting bumped, etc...

3 - Speed - Ability to separate from close defenders vertically both before and after the catch. When combined with quick twitch aspect...can defeat man coverage. 

4 - Vision/Awareness - The ability to see the ball into your hand, awareness of the defender(s) location, tracking the ball flight path in your mind even when the defender temporarily occludes your sight, judging speed and flight path of the ball almost as soon as it is released, using defenders body positioning to maximize route effectiveness, seeing the defensive adjustments post snap/during release and adjusting, etc...

5 - Route running - The ability to come off the line with nearly identical steps initially for the entire route tree, consistency in stride length and angle break, ability to lure defenders with speed changes, etc...

6 - Strength power - The ability to get separation at the LOS against savvy man defenders, strength to hold on to the ball when getting double tackled, ability to run through arm tackles after the catch, etc...

7 - Quick twitch - Very important for getting release at the LOS, huge part of crisp angles in the route tree. ability to relocate ball after you or the ball is bumped/altered, ability to catch the ball over the shoulder that is unexpected / underthrown / low, etc...

8 - Toughness/determination - Knowing that you are going to be the one to come down with the ball, taking hits that shake you....but you get to the huddle for the next play, blocking against size advantaged defenders, etc...

 

parenthesis is those aspects they accel(led) at:

 

Marvin Harrison - (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), (7), 8

Reggie Wayne - (1), (2), (4), 5, (6), 7, (8)

TY Hilton - (1), (2), (3), (4), 5, (7), 8

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39 minutes ago, Four2itus said:

Aspects of WR's game...(just my own list off the top of my head)

 

These are numbered, but that has nothing to do with their level of importance. 

 

1 - Hands - The ability to catch clean, away from the body, and quickly secure the ball. Tracking rotation, catching the tip in the        center of the hand, etc...

2 - Body control - Bumping legally to create separation, moving your bulk in a way that defies defending, timing your jump for the catch, toe tapping, the ability to hit the ground in the least damaging way possible, relocate catch zone when getting bumped, etc...

3 - Speed - Ability to separate from close defenders vertically both before and after the catch. When combined with quick twitch aspect...can defeat man coverage. 

4 - Vision/Awareness - The ability to see the ball into your hand, awareness of the defender(s) location, tracking the ball flight path in your mind even when the defender temporarily occludes your sight, judging speed and flight path of the ball almost as soon as it is released, using defenders body positioning to maximize route effectiveness, seeing the defensive adjustments post snap/during release and adjusting, etc...

5 - Route running - The ability to come off the line with nearly identical steps initially for the entire route tree, consistency in stride length and angle break, ability to lure defenders with speed changes, etc...

6 - Strength power - The ability to get separation at the LOS against savvy man defenders, strength to hold on to the ball when getting double tackled, ability to run through arm tackles after the catch, etc...

7 - Quick twitch - Very important for getting release at the LOS, huge part of crisp angles in the route tree. ability to relocate ball after you or the ball is bumped/altered, ability to catch the ball over the shoulder that is unexpected / underthrown / low, etc...

8 - Toughness/determination - Knowing that you are going to be the one to come down with the ball, taking hits that shake you....but you get to the huddle for the next play, blocking against size advantaged defenders, etc...

 

parenthesis is those aspects they accel(led) at:

 

Marvin Harrison - (1), (2), (3), (4), (5), (7), 8

Reggie Wayne - (1), (2), (4), 5, (6), 7, (8)

TY Hilton - (1), (2), (3), (4), 5, (7), 8

 

Good list. Although I'd separate quick twitch into agility and press/los release. A WR can be very agile or quick twitch and still struggle in their release. Release has as much to do with hands as it does with twitch. 

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ESPN's Bowen's comments on Pierce.

While I agree on some of this, I question how much tape Bowen watched. AP was rarely used in the slot. 

HIs descriptor of boundary X is spot on though. And I hope his last comment is true (route tree expansion). 

 

Why he is a perfect fit: 

Pierce is a boundary X target for quarterback Matt Ryan who can also shift inside to create matchups out of slot or trips sets, making him a really good fit for Frank Reich’s offense. He is at his best on the move — running fades, overs, shallows and speed outs — and the Colts can scheme up Pierce off play-action for Ryan. Watch for them to create windows at the second level or isolate the rookie as a vertical target.

 

With his foot quickness and play strength, Pierce can set up press coverage, and we know he can be a primary option for Ryan inside the red zone. Throw the slants there and cater to Pierce’s 6-foot-3 frame and leaping ability on end zone targets, and I expect Pierce’s route tree to expand even more in a pro system.

 

 

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12 hours ago, jonjon said:

If he doesn't we're in big trouble. Again, who would start instead of him? He'd have to completely suck not to start. 

I just don't agree.  He is a rookie.  it doesn't mean he sucks if he doesn't start the first game.  Not many WR rookies start their first game.  There are exceptions, of course, but that is not the norm.  

 

If i had to guess i would say the first few game starters will be pittman and campbell.  In 3 wr sets, maybe ty if he is back or dulin.  I don't know.  Someone may shine early.

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36 minutes ago, Fluke_33 said:

I just don't agree.  He is a rookie.  it doesn't mean he sucks if he doesn't start the first game.  Not many WR rookies start their first game.  There are exceptions, of course, but that is not the norm.  

 

If i had to guess i would say the first few game starters will be pittman and campbell.  In 3 wr sets, maybe ty if he is back or dulin.  I don't know.  Someone may shine early.

 

  I will guess lil jon is about 18 with a lot of development left to be done, NFL wise for sure. 

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16 hours ago, EastStreet said:

Like Wentz and Ryan last year, Rivers was top 10 in deep ball accuracy, and like the others, weren't top half of the league in deep ball attempts. So not so sure the issue was JB's confidence/guts, or simply Reich's play calling. Regardless, for the last two years our QBs have been top 10 in deep ball success rate, but bottom half in deep ball attempts. That screams play calling, and screams it loud. 

Sorry to be blunt, but no it doesn't.  That's too shallow of a take.  Success rates only mean that there was high success when we chose to throw it deep...meaning the conditions that made it ripe for success were present, and the staff/QB properly saw those conditions and executed well.  It does not speak to how many other times those conditions existed but we failed to attempt it.  IOW, a high success rate indicates very good play calling.  Low total attempts tends to mean the conditions were not ripe, because the high success rate shows that Frank/QB can tell when they are ripe, and the conditions were not present.

 

But before saying it is bad or good play calling, a person needs to understand the conditions that underpinned the successes, and see how many times those conditions existed during plays where the ball wasn't thrown deep...concluding that we should have thrown it deep then too.  Those are the types of details that OCs and QBs...and GMs and owners.... are good at reviewing, and the types of things fans suck at reviewing.  But fans somehow still feel well enough informed to pass judgment on play calling. 

 

High success rates are a good thing, yet you still find a way to bash Frank for them.

 

But if you want to make a generalization that the O is more of a short game ball control than a vertical big chunk O, that's a reasonable observation.  And yes, that alone would explain fewer deep shots, but its not bad play calling.  Its also unfair to criticize the lack of deep shots in a vacuum when its part of a greater plan to hold the ball, milk clock, avoid interceptions...while also trying to feed your big chunk play RB to get yards that a deep pass might get if called. 

 

16 hours ago, EastStreet said:

LOL..  PC was 85% outside. Ballard specifically said when drafted, the plan was to start him at slot year one, and them move him outside. That's exactly what happened. He went from 5% outside in 2020, to 85% outside in 2021. It was the plan, not necessity. I'm not going to ignore both last year's usage and Ballard explicit comments. Sure, PC could end up back inside, but most would expect him to be mostly outside, while the rook is worked in. 

There were no other viable options.  There are now with AP on board.   His high stats are drawn from a shallow universe of data during a season that can be explained as a season full of failed plans with offensive personnel.  I would not use that to predict how he is going to be used this year when a new WR with 4.41 speed and outside experience is on board for 4 years.     

 

The plan for PC to migrate from playing slot to the outside was a function of TYs original contract expiring.  (IOW, not having another viable option on the outside......TYs gone).  PC hasn't been reliable enough to show that he can take over for TY, and he may not show that before his contract expires.    

 

So Ballard pulled the trigger and drafted AP to be TYs replacement for another 3 to 4 years.  PC is now a short timer who is going to have to fit in where he can, likely slot because AP is here to man the outside, reflecting the investment.  What happened last year is totally different circumstances.  JMO.

 

 

16 hours ago, EastStreet said:

IMO, the year will start (unless TY comes back) with Pitt (X), Dulin (slot), and PC (Z). Pierce will be the 4th WR and be worked in on both sides outside, allowing Pitt to move in (like he's done), and to give both Pitt and PC breathers. That will be a healthy amount of early snaps to get his feet wet. AP won't be an every down guy to start the year. That is, unless someone is injured. 

Are we talking about what game 1 looks like out of circumstances typical of a rookie WR or what the intended plans are for the season?  I don't disagree with how it starts, but that may not reflect the intended plans for the season.  I highly doubt that the intent is for AP to stay behind Dulin as WR#4. 

 

Instead of X and Z, I think what PC will do next year is going to be totally dependent on how AP performs as an outside vertical threat.   Dulin is simply a backup of multiple spots, including outside vertical and shifty slot. I think based upon contracts and expirations, my guess is that the intent is for PC and Dulin to compete for slot and also get worked into the outside occasionally, or more frequently if AP stays limited. 

 

Of course, individual performances and individual game matchups during the season could change how anything looks and what stats are accumulated by each player.  But that's speculation about what could happen, and not an honest look at what I think the intent is.

 

 

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