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A Case for Bethel Johnson as the #2 WR

Discussion in 'PatsFans.com - Patriots Fan Forum' started by rhubma, May 11, 2006.

  1. rhubma

    rhubma On the Roster

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    Based on his enormous playmaking upside (breaking several tackles and going the distance), I believe that Watson will be the # 2 reciever in 2006. The Pats are just going to want to get the ball in his hands at least several times a game.

    My projected breakdown is Branch with 70-80 catches, back-uped by Caldwell. Both of them being intermediate distance threats.

    Watson, 45-55 catches, and Grarambo, 20-30 catches, will work the middle...

    Another 20-25 catches to 3rd down Brown and maybe 50-60 to the backs, especially Faulk.

    My point? There are not too many catches left for the 2nd wr, if these projections prove even somewhat accurate. So the question becomes what do you need the 2nd wr to do?

    2 thoughts:

    1) Run blocker - as Given was. Very good complimentary receiver and excellent 2nd lever run blocker. At this point, no one there is no one on the roster that fits this description.

    2) Flat-out speed receiver. Take the DBs deep every play and clear out for the short and intermediate passes, or help with the 2nd level running because the DBs are just too deep to help in run support. This is where BJ may make his mark.

    An argument could be made that the 2 speed receivers on the roster are BJ (even with all his ups and downs - this much is definite, the man can run) and Chad Jackson, a talented rookie. My thoughts are the 2nd wr job is BJ's to lose, at least through the first half of season. Then if BJ doesn't have any success, Jackson takes over about week 8 as the speed receiver.

    Think about it. Caldwell and Branch are similar receivers - both have speed and quickness, but both primarity work the intermediate area. Having both of them in the game would somewhat clog up Watson's zones. Sending a speed receiver like BJ deep every play, stretches the field even if you don't throw him the ball.

    Now healthy, I like Bethel's chances to have a pretty good year. Prediction: 20-30 catches with a 14-15 ypc average and 6 touchdowns.

    Another random thought about WR - I wonder how much of a factor it was in taking Chad Jackson that he had experience in Urban Meyer's (sp?) spread offense was? If it is true the BB and OC Josh McDaniel are planning to incorporate some of this system into the Pats offense then this makes CJ a little less of a rookie since he went through breaking in the system at FLA.
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2006
  2. PhilD

    PhilD On the Roster

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    I love Bethel, and I'd love him to do well, but his is the #2 job to lose? I think Troy Brown, Jackson and probably Caldwell are all ahead of him at this point.

    He'll make a stunning 40 yard diving catch in week 8, and catch a touchdown in week 14, but I think there is little chance he'll be consistent, especially little chance he'll be the number 2.

    Of course, on Madden, he'll still be a stud ;)
     
  3. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    #75 Jersey

    Get off the crack, son.

    Okay, to be less flip, if Johnson has 20-30 catches and 6 TDs, he's not going to be wearing a New England Patriots uniform doing it. I see no reason to imagine that this year will be better than his first three combined.
     
  4. JoeSixPat

    JoeSixPat Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    I think you drank the Timothy Leary Kool-Aid instead of the Bill Belichick Kool-Aid, but I love your optimism

    Bethel's gotta just be hoping he makes the team at this point... but what do I know - I didn't even know we had a player named Grarambo, so I must be totally out of touch these days
     
  5. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    There is a lot to this. Before, NFL teams would flee from Gator WRs due to the Spurrier system, which made small quick guys great receivers but would never work in the NFL. Now Gator receivers are going to be sought after, because the Meyer offense is perhaps the most sophisticated in the NCAA. It's the only one I've heard of (I'm sure there's others), that Receivers run their route depending on how the coverage reacts.
     
  6. PromisedLand

    PromisedLand Virtual Internet Person

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    I'm with you there, DH. If he hasn't gotten "it" yet, why should we expect him to suddenly get it this year?
     
  7. borg

    borg In the Starting Line-Up

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    I hear Jacksonville is in the market
     
  8. JoeSixPat

    JoeSixPat Veteran Starter w/Big Long Term Deal

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    Hey - great idea - make it a conditional pick - don't cost 'em nothing if he fails to make the squad - but up to a 3rd rounder if he meets some quotas

    that's a win win for both teams
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 21, 2005
  9. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    He's gotta be cheaper than Lelie or one of those other guys.
     
  10. rhubma

    rhubma On the Roster

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    Ouch.

    Making a case means just that - making a case.


    Maybe I didn't explain my point well enough... let me take another shot at it:


    My belief, based upon the available players (no blocking WRs on the roster) is, that the most likely and (probably most advantageous) option for the 2nd wr would be a speed guy. Deep WR speed opens the field up for:
    1) Watson
    2) Branch
    3) CD or LM running

    Who, on the roster, fits that bill? Answer: the 4 year veteran BJ and/or possibly Jackson after some ramping up.

    If you put in Troy Brown or Childress or Caldwell or... they may clog up Watson's chances to work his thing in the middle...

    So, while being BJ's job to lose" may be a bit strong - it isn't a drug-induced thought. There is an opening here.

    Bethel Johnson has TALENT. He has a shot this year to add something.

    That's my point.

    Whatever,it will be interesting to watch (crack-free I might add)
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2006
  11. Johnny Z

    Johnny Z Practice Squad Player

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    I watch Texas A&M football all the time. The problem with A&M wide receivers is no training. They don't run routes very well. Never have. The forward pass is still strange to them. They don't get it. We have one on the Packers, Robert Ferguson. He's a major disappointment so far. The day they picked him, I posted on the Packers board "terrible pick".

    Bethel Johnson supports one of my contentions, which is that speed is not a substantive WR attribute.

    As for blocking for RB's, I rank that pretty low. A WR is there to get open and make the catch. Deion Branch gets open. He not a burner, but he has route running guile. He makes the catch in all games.

    Robert Ferguson is a great blocker. Who cares? Bethel Johnson is fast. Who cares?

    Route running guile is a substantive WR attribute. Catch ability is another. The player who is best at those two should be the replacement for Givens. The player you know has it is Troy Brown.

    Your rook, I have my doubts.
     
  12. Alk

    Alk In the Starting Line-Up

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    Watson as a #2? #2 TE maybe but he isn't and never will be a WR.
     
  13. rhubma

    rhubma On the Roster

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    D. Graham - Rambo = nickname Grarambo The man flat-out pancakes people when healthy....
     
  14. rhubma

    rhubma On the Roster

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    Didn't mean a #2 WR - Meant the # 2 receiver on the team (number of catches & possibly total yards)
     
  15. Lloyd_Christmas

    Lloyd_Christmas I can delete my own crap! PatsFans.com Supporter

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    A Case for Helen Thomas to be the next Miss Congeniality

    ***

    Seriously, rhubma, you must really like a challenge. I salute you for your effort, but really, c'mon! Johnson will have to prove himself just to make the roster.

    I now return myself to my regularly broadcast day....
     
  16. PhilD

    PhilD On the Roster

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    I'd rather have a credible threat as a #2 reciever than someone just stretching the field. Cornerbacks should be more worried about a guy consistently making the 8 yard catch on 3rd and 6, or the 20 yarder on 2nd and 4, than the guy who runs like a freak down the sideline and maybe gets two bombs his way all game.

    A receiver needs to be able to work in traffic and run routes, not just go vertical - especially in the patriots offense. If anything, it's those deep outs that we run that require precision route running (think vs Tampa Bay '05, David Givens reception in between 3 defensive backs on the side line). If anything, Bethel will stretch the field as a 3rd receiver... you can't sprint 40 yards 3 plays in a row, and I don't see him as a credible receiving threat as a #2.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 21, 2005
  17. PhilD

    PhilD On the Roster

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    ^^

    Last edited by NEM?! As soon as I talk about deep outs I get the NEM mark? I thought that only happened when you talk about slants and crossing patterns?! :)
     
  18. dryheat44

    dryheat44 Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    Here's the thing though, we've been in that same situation the last two years. Givens isn't a fleet guy. Last year Dwight and Davis were, but they were used very sparingly in the offense. Bethel has always been the speediest guy on the team, that could, in theory, run coverage off. Hasn't happened yet.

    Troy Brown needs to be in the slot. He is dynamite there. He can play the outside, but everybody's happier with him as the slot.

    I guess you've given a scenario where BJ is our #2 receiver (meaning starting at X or Y), which was your goal, I guess. I'd have to forget everything I know about the Patriots to see it, though.
     
  19. VJCPatriot

    VJCPatriot Pro Bowl Player

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    Enter Chad Jackson. I think Pats fans are gonna love what he brings to the table. He has the speed AND the great hands. All that we really need to see is how fast he picks up the offensive system.

    The only question in my mind is whether CJ will be in the slot or if BB will use him as an outside WR.

     
  20. oldrover

    oldrover Rotational Player and Threatening Starter's Job

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    Givens couldn't catch a ball his first year, so he spent 4 months catching balls from a machine. I haven't heard of BJ doing that... nor do I expect to.

    Bethel has straight-line speed... but he doesn't appear to be motivated to improve his game beyond that.
     

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