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WindyCity

Roster Breakdown: Wide Receivers

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WR

Allen Robinson

94 targets, 55 catches, 58% catch, 68% catchable, 754 yards, 4 TDs, 13.7 YPC, 2 Drops
Per Game: 4.2 catches, 58 yards, .3 TD
16 games: 67 catches, 928 yards, 5 TDs

2018: Robinson was clearly the Bears best WR and he had a solid season, maybe not to the level of his contract but coming off the ACL I think you were always expecting a more pedestrian year 1. The problem with Robinson's season is that there were a lot of ineffiencies in his game and a couple of stats that are good not great, and a couple that are not good. The first thing is that the catch % is not very good and part of that is on Mitch. 94 targets turning into 55 catches is not the pay off that you are looking for in a WR that has long catches, but is not a true "deep threat". The guys with the deepest intended air yards average have catch % like Robinson, [Foster 60%, Jackson 55%, Anderson 53%] but their degree of difficulty is much higher. Those players are between 16-20 average air yards, Robinson is at 11.9. The 10% difference between passes deemed catchable and what he caught is a concern. 

I do not expect Robinson to ever get the targets in this offense that the very productive top tier guys get, there is too much an emphasis on spreading the ball around. In fact 94 targets is a decent amount, Hill had 105 with Nagy as the OC. 

2019: The very simply approach to the numbers is that the Bears just need Robinson to be a little more efficient with the targets that are designated for him. Part of that is Mitch throwing more catchable passes to Robinson, 68% is the lowest catchable target rate on the team. He was ranked 98th in catchable passes being throw to him. He and Mitch need to get on the same page and they need to bring both number up. I would also expect/like to see Robinson more involved in the redzone where he only had 5 redzone catches. I think if Robinson can take the next step and with even a slight improvement in catch percentage and red zone usage the Bears will see the numbers match more of what they expected.

Taylor Gabriel

93 targets, 67 catches, 72.04% catch, 77% catchable, 688 yards, 2 TDs, 10.3 YPC, 1 Drop

2018: I thought Gabriel had a very nice season and was well worth the 6/season that he is making. 67 catches on 93 targets is more than I was expecting in both categories. Part of that was due to Robinson missing 3 games and it seemed Gabriel and Mitch got on the same page quicker than the other pass catchers. I was pleasantly surprised by Gabriel's hands and route running as he showed to be more than just a deep threat. The disappointing aspect of Gabriel's season is the 10.3 YPC, which is not a very good number and is even worse when you consider his speed. His YAC production was also not what I think we were expecting when he was cast in the Tyreek Hill role. Now a lot of that is because they threw a ton of screens and short passes to him that often did not work because of blocking, but I was expecting more of a vertical presence to his game. I think is was a successful signing and a good season, but different than I was expecting. Gabriel did demand DBs to play off and he got a pretty sizeable cushion on most plays.

2019: The offense obviously needs to get more vertical and I would like to think Gabriel is part of that, but I am not sure based on how he was used. So, either Gabriel is used more vertically or the Bears probably need to add a bigger speed WR to compliment the current WR crew. That was probably suppose to be Kevin White before he showed that he simply is not an NFL player. I would expect Gabriel's usage to shrink a little in 2019 as 93 targets is a lot, especially at 10.3 YPC.

Anthony Miller

54 targets, 33 catches, 61% catch, 77.8% catchable, 423 yards, 7 TD, 12.8 YPC, 4 Drops

2018: For a rookie WR I think Miller had a solid rookie campaign. His numbers would have been better if he and Mitch had been on the same page early in the season, but it was getting comical how often Mitch missed him. There are some positives, 12.8 YPC out of the slot is a very nice average. Almost 40% of his production was YAC, which was more productive than others at the position. I thought he showed really nice route running and toughness playing through the shoulder and working the middle of the field. 7 TD is very nice redzone production. The concerns are there as well, a 17% difference between catchable passes and catches is very high and part of that is a team leading 4 drops. He and Mitch need to get better at connecting on a higher percentage of throws. My biggest issue with Miller is that he would often disappear for games at a time, part of that WR coach Mike Furrey attributed to learning the routes, but he needs to be more of a consistent presence in the middle of the field.

2019: He has to get more efficient and that is on both him and Mitch. I would not expect him to have a ton more targets than the 54 that he had in 2018. But even matching his production from this season with a more reasonable 71% catch percentage he would have been closer to 500 yards and 40 catches. Mike Furrey talked about how Miller was still fine tuning his route running and the plays and eluded to the fact that he is not always precisely where he needs to be. Taking a next step in the system should help turn those plays into completions.

Josh Bellamy

26 targets, 14 catches, 53.8% catch, 73.1% catchable, 117 yards, 1 TD

2018: My hatred of Josh Bellamy has been well documented, but I am here to tell you that he was good this season in his role. He was solid on special teams, he was a good/willing blocker, and he made big catches that I did not think he was capable of making. He seems to have a role in the offense that fits his skill set. There is still some serious inefficiency in Bellamy's game, but as a sub package player I think you can live with it.

2019: He should be re-signed as the 5th WR who has a select package and continue to play on special teams. I would like to see Wims take over as the primary backup.

Javon Wims

5 targets, 4 catches, 80% catch, 80% catchable, 32 yards

2018: He had 1 game and impressed after an impressive pre-season. He looks like he could be something and at a minimum he gives the Bears talented depth with upside. His game against the Vikings was pretty much 20 yards and in, but that game he showed good routes and hands and converted 3 3rd downs so there is some trust there with Mitch. Exciting to see a 7th round pick look like something.

2019: It was nice to see him in 1 game with a real role and that he can produce. I look at him as the perfect backup for Allen Robinson. Both are big, good hands, run good routes, and neither relies on long speed as a huge part of their effectiveness. You continue to develop Wims as Robinson's backup and maybe long term replacement.

Kevin White

8 targets, 4 catches, 50% catch, 62.5% catchable, 93 yards

2018: A few splash catches, but inactive a ton and showed little growth and development.

2019: Kevin White stayed healthy the entire year and proved that he is simply not an NFL WR. He made some nice catches and then the next rep was promptly thrown around by the DB. He has not shown the growth that many thought would come with health and the fact that he was inactive most of the season will tell you everything you need. White will be gone and I think the Bears need to find a big speed option in free agency or the draft.

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Nagy's connection with Reid makes me think the targets will always be well spread out in this offense. The outside guys will probably see fewer targets than we'd expect in a traditional offense.

I like our rookie class. Miller was our best rated receiver by DVOA and was 36th in the league in his rookie year. Wims could develop into a solid outside WR. New Orleans seems to be very good at scouting WRs and Pace has done pretty well with the position so far. I'm willing to excuse White as failing due to injuries rather than talent.

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Going forward to 2019 I think my biggest concern in general is that the WR room seemed to struggle when it was needed most vs Philly with simply getting open, vs a rather poor secondary. Granted, they where banged up, and Mitch was a bit gimpy, which prevented him from doing his usual buying time with his mobility thing (and those things are massive factors here).... but it is worth talking about.

The problem comes in the concept, that even if we do have the opportunity to draft a good WR... we don't really have the roster space to carry another one... White is going to get (and should have already been) replaced entirely by Wims, who looks to be pretty solid, but isn't the kind of speed/route runner combination guy I think we should be looking to draft, if ample opportunity presents itself.

Targets I'd be looking at (going off Walter Football's stats/projections):

Paris Campbell: 6ft, 205lbs   4.35 in the 40...90catches, 1063yrds, 12TD

Projected rnds 1-2.... but his drop rate is an issue that COULD (probably won't) cause him to drop to rnd 3. Not likely, but worth looking into if he falls.

Marquise Brown: 5ft 11in, 160 lbs 4.35 in the 40.  75 catches 1318yrds, 10TD

Projected rounds 1-3  Pro Comp is Will Fuller.... who he's faster than, but less good as a Route Runner... The elephant in the room here is he's even smaller than Cohen weight wise, which could be the reason he falls to a draftable spot.

KJ Hill: 6ft, 200lbs, 4.42 in the 40.... 70 catches, 885yrds, 6 tds  His arms measure at 29.63 inches, his hands at 9.25 inches, and his wing span at 73.25 inches

Projected rounds 3-4. Well rounded kid apparently with strong hands and good route running.... Seems like he could only be lower on the rankings because Ohio St doesn't have a QB.
 

Andy Isabella: 5ft 10in, 190lbs 4.54 projected 40.. 102 catches, 1698 yards, 13 TDs  (65 catches, 1020yrds, 10 tds last year)

projected rounds 4-6..... PFF loves him for whatever that's worth as the top deep ball WR this draft class.... Ideal role in the NFL is probably slot, like Anthony Miller.
Quote

 

Best deep-ball WR

Andy Isabella, UMass

The following statistics are not made up: 14 catches for 705 yards and nine touchdowns. Isabella’s not just your run-of-the-mill slot receiver who dinks and dunks through zone coverage. He’s a true threat down the field and leads the nation’s receivers with a ridiculous 50.4 yards per reception on passes targeted at least 20 yards downfield. His ability to get open down the field is almost second to none and the skill he possesses to separate from defenders has led to 16.4 yards after the catch per reception.

 

 

 

I think we get one of those guys, run 1 roster spot WR heavy so we can rotate a bit more and use deeper route concepts, then (and contrary to some opinions on him) rather than using Cohen MORE as a WR, we shift him back more to the backfield, and never speak of Taquan Mizzell ever again.

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I think the Bears will look at adding more speed to the WR room, possibly with more size than Gabriel.

 

Chris Conley would be a nice #4.

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There were a lot of times I questioned Robinson’s effort. Hope with another year beyond his acl injury next year we’ll get #1 WR numbers and effort

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I think Gabriel's targets need to come down a little and we need to find someone else to run those WR screens. His YAC production was downright bad and he was not good on those screens.

I would like to see them sign Chris Conley from KC, 6'3" 4.35 [40] to be a big speed option and throw the screens to him or Wims who have a chance to break a tackle with speed or size.

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29 minutes ago, WindyCity said:

I think Gabriel's targets need to come down a little and we need to find someone else to run those WR screens. His YAC production was downright bad and he was not good on those screens.

I would like to see them sign Chris Conley from KC, 6'3" 4.35 [40] to be a big speed option and throw the screens to him or Wims who have a chance to break a tackle with speed or size.

Tell me about it. For a guy who is very fast, Gabriel has real difficulty making defenders miss.

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2 hours ago, RJ_11 said:

Tell me about it. For a guy who is very fast, Gabriel has real difficulty making defenders miss.

Using him as a blocker on screens was dumb as hell too, saw that a few times this season. 

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