2020 Pats: Roster & Beyond (non-QB edition)

54thMA

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What's done is done and hindsight is 20/20, but can anyone here realistically say where he should have been drafted?

There is a wealth of football knowledge here and I'm curious as to where he should have been drafted.

Is it a done deal that he's not a first round talent or is there still hope he'll blossom?

Just curious is all.
 

ehaz

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What's done is done and hindsight is 20/20, but can anyone here realistically say where he should have been drafted?

Is it a done deal that he's not a first round talent or is there still hope he'll blossom?

Just curious is all.
Blossom? No. Can he be a starting NFL WR? Yeah it's possible. He still has upside with the ball in his hands and as a contested catch guy, but the main problem is separation. According to Next Gen, Harry was LAST (143 out of 143 WRs) in average separation last year. That's not something you can fix - he needs manufactured touches.
 

54thMA

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Blossom? No. Can he be a starting NFL WR? Yeah it's possible. He still has upside with the ball in his hands and as a contested catch guy, but the main problem is separation. According to Next Gen, Harry was LAST (143 out of 143 WRs) in average separation last year. That's not something you can fix - he needs manufactured touches.
Thanks............seems like an overreach drafting him where they did.

Maybe they can try different things to get the ball in his hands as you said; use him out of the backfield maybe or run jet sweeps?

Last in separation.

Wow.
 

BigSoxFan

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Blossom? No. Can he be a starting NFL WR? Yeah it's possible. He still has upside with the ball in his hands and as a contested catch guy, but the main problem is separation. According to Next Gen, Harry was LAST (143 out of 143 WRs) in average separation last year. That's not something you can fix - he needs manufactured touches.
Yup. He’s not a gadget player but he has real limitations that he’s unlikely to ever overcome. Like Sanu, he really needs an elite #1 to take coverage away and provide space.

The biggest problem with Harry pick was the opportunity cost. He went #32.

Deebo went 36
AJ Brown went 51
DK Metcalf went 64

All of those guys would be better for this Pats team.
 

Super Nomario

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Blossom? No. Can he be a starting NFL WR? Yeah it's possible. He still has upside with the ball in his hands and as a contested catch guy, but the main problem is separation. According to Next Gen, Harry was LAST (143 out of 143 WRs) in average separation last year. That's not something you can fix - he needs manufactured touches.
I'm not sure the "dead last" thing is right - he didn't have enough targets to show up in the rate stats (https://nextgenstats.nfl.com/stats/receiving/2019/all#average-separation) and there are WRs with less separation than his reported 2.2, including Kenny Golladay (1.9), Mike Williams (2.0), Terry McLaurin (2.1), Devante Parker and Preston Williams (both 2.1), plus guys like Darius Slayton, Julio Jones, A.J. Brown, and Allen Robinson also at 2.2.

I don't think Harry is ever going to be great at separating. But his college tape was full of circus catches and we've seen some of his after-the-catch skills and blocking ability. So I think the case for Harry is a guy who can get open enough, outjump and outcatch contesting defenders, make some plays after the catch on some schemed touches, and blocks his butt off. I think the keys for him are improving his press releases, which will let him make more plays downfield, and using his body better to shield defenders.
 

DJnVa

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Blossom? No. Can he be a starting NFL WR? Yeah it's possible. He still has upside with the ball in his hands and as a contested catch guy, but the main problem is separation. According to Next Gen, Harry was LAST (143 out of 143 WRs) in average separation last year. That's not something you can fix - he needs manufactured touches.
The only list I can find doesn't have Harry for 2019 because he didn't get enough targets. Do you have that?

Through 1 week this season he is at 3.3 (https://nextgenstats.nfl.com/stats/receiving/2020/all#average-separation)--a number that if he keeps would be perfectly fine.
 

tims4wins

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I'm not sure the "dead last" thing is right - he didn't have enough targets to show up in the rate stats (https://nextgenstats.nfl.com/stats/receiving/2019/all#average-separation) and there are WRs with less separation than his reported 2.2, including Kenny Golladay (1.9), Mike Williams (2.0), Terry McLaurin (2.1), Devante Parker and Preston Williams (both 2.1), plus guys like Darius Slayton, Julio Jones, A.J. Brown, and Allen Robinson also at 2.2.

I don't think Harry is ever going to be great at separating. But his college tape was full of circus catches and we've seen some of his after-the-catch skills and blocking ability. So I think the case for Harry is a guy who can get open enough, outjump and outcatch contesting defenders, make some plays after the catch on some schemed touches, and blocks his butt off. I think the keys for him are improving his press releases, which will let him make more plays downfield, and using his body better to shield defenders.
Anquan Boldin would probably be his ceiling, right? I don't think he'll ever be as good as Boldin, but that's the best comp I've heard.
 

Super Nomario

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Anquan Boldin would probably be his ceiling, right? I don't think he'll ever be as good as Boldin, but that's the best comp I've heard.
You're not the first person to make the comparison but I hate it. Boldin had one of the best seasons by a rookie WR ever (101 catches for 1377 yards and 8 TDs). Harry didn't have as many receiving yards as Bolden last year - Brandon Bolden that is.

And while Boldin was a much better WR, Harry is the better athlete. Boldin famously ran a 4.70 40 and his jumps were also terrible. Harry ran a respectable 4.53 and his jumps were above average. So he sort of can win in some similar ways (size, physicality, after the catch), and has some similar limitations, but he's also got some athletic gifts Boldin didn't have ... and of course, he's not 1/10 of the receiver Boldin was.
 

EL Jeffe

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On Harry, I think about just how different the perception of his performance would have been Sunday had his two worst plays gone according to plan. Case in point, he (justifiably) took heat for not finishing his run better on the 1st quarter swing pass against a 185# corner. While he should have been the trucker and not the truckee, Edelman blew his blocking assignment on the play which allowed the CB to tackle Harry. If Edelman executed the block, Harry was off to the races (and with his speed, however far the race would have gone). That was ripe for a chunk play. Then obviously the fumble; the good news is that it's a correctable mistake. But Baker also deserves credit and is one of the few LBs in the league who could have made that play to cause the fumble. Baker has + to ++ speed (4.53 combine) and movement skills. The median NFL LB probably doesn't make that play and Harry scores the TD. Again, the mistake was on him but the play design was beautiful and Harry actually did a really nice job of navigating through traffic to run the route. Two little changes (better Edelman block, Harry protecting the ball better or matched up against a non-Baker type LB), and I imagine the Harry narrative would have been a lot different.

(It's entirely possible I'm just talking myself into a Harry stan)
 

epraz

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On the second play, it's not a talking point if that happens literally anywhere else on the field, because the Pats would've retained possession at the spot it went out of bounds.
 

54thMA

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Chicago Tribune says Allen Robinson has asked for a trade.

Just putting this out there. Not only did he remove Bears from his social media but sources told the Tribune he is asking to be traded. Robinson would be a FA after this year. (others have pointed out some of these points)
If you're the Patriots, do you go after him and if so, what would you give up to get him?

I'm no expert, just a lifelong fan, but I like what I saw for the most part on Sunday; Josh looks like he's tailoring certain aspects of the offense to suit Cam's strengths vs forcing him into doing things he's not comfortable with.

I also like how they were run heavy in the first half, then switched things up and attacked Miami differently to start the second half.

The RPO when you see it run by your team is interesting to me; several times Miami defenders had no clue who had the ball, Cam runs that offense well.

Not to sound like a broken record, but I just can't get over how big he is, he's huge.

That first TD he scored; it was comical at how easy that was.

I really enjoyed what I saw on Sunday; something new and different.
 

BigSoxFan

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I feel like it would take a 2 and another pick to get Robinson. Don’t see anyone ponying up a 1, which I absolutely wouldn’t do. This exercise is much harder now that we have much less certainty on where we’re picking and also because of that stupid Bengals penalty.

I would see if Harry could go the other way to help offset any pick costs.
 

ehaz

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I'm not sure the "dead last" thing is right - he didn't have enough targets to show up in the rate stats (https://nextgenstats.nfl.com/stats/receiving/2019/all#average-separation) and there are WRs with less separation than his reported 2.2, including Kenny Golladay (1.9), Mike Williams (2.0), Terry McLaurin (2.1), Devante Parker and Preston Williams (both 2.1), plus guys like Darius Slayton, Julio Jones, A.J. Brown, and Allen Robinson also at 2.2.

I don't think Harry is ever going to be great at separating. But his college tape was full of circus catches and we've seen some of his after-the-catch skills and blocking ability. So I think the case for Harry is a guy who can get open enough, outjump and outcatch contesting defenders, make some plays after the catch on some schemed touches, and blocks his butt off. I think the keys for him are improving his press releases, which will let him make more plays downfield, and using his body better to shield defenders.
The only list I can find doesn't have Harry for 2019 because he didn't get enough targets. Do you have that?

Through 1 week this season he is at 3.3 (https://nextgenstats.nfl.com/stats/receiving/2020/all#average-separation)--a number that if he keeps would be perfectly fine.
Weird. I didn't look it up myself I just took Evan Lazar's word on it from this article.

 

BigSoxFan

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Personally I don’t know enough. Defer to the experts. Sounds like Robinson?
I am far from an expert but I feel like Robinson is a better fit with our current Cam offense and OBJ is a better fit with our former Brady offense. Robinson is really good on contested catches that are sure to be part of our offense this year. Brady and OBJ would have been such a treat to watch. Sucks that it never materialized.
 

54thMA

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Personally I don’t know enough. Defer to the experts. Sounds like Robinson?
No big secret that they are weak at the WR position; Edelman.......and...............................

Sanu must have been fried, dyed and laid to the side to be cut considering what is left.
 

54thMA

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I am far from an expert but I feel like Robinson is a better fit with our current Cam offense and OBJ is a better fit with our former Brady offense. Robinson is really good on contested catches that are sure to be part of our offense this year. Brady and OBJ would have been such a treat to watch. Sucks that it never materialized.
I guess that is the real answer; whoever is a better fit for Cam/the offense they are featuring this year.
 

BigSoxFan

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I guess that is the real answer; whoever is a better fit for Cam/the offense they are featuring this year.
That’s my belief, at least. Both would obviously be huge upgrades and are young enough to be part of the 2021 and onward solution. You get one of them and everything starts falling into place with Edelman acting as a solid #2 and Harry as the #3. I hope we poke around here.
 

54thMA

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That’s my belief, at least. Both would obviously be huge upgrades and are young enough to be part of the 2021 and onward solution. You get one of them and everything starts falling into place with Edelman acting as a solid #2 and Harry as the #3. I hope we poke around here.
To me this is the beauty of the NFL unlike any other sport, you can make a move, catch lightning in a bottle, go on a run and win a title.

Teams go on runs, I don't think we as fans know what we have here with this team but they have the best coach in the league and I'll take my chances with him.

Again, Josh really impressed me with how he tailored the offense to Cam's strengths.

Let Cam get comfortable and confident and we'll see what happens.

And go get him a legit weapon.
 

BigSoxFan

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To me this is the beauty of the NFL unlike any other sport, you can make a move, catch lightning in a bottle, go on a run and win a title.

Teams go on runs, I don't think we as fans know what we have here with this team but they have the best coach in the league and I'll take my chances with him.

Again, Josh really impressed me with how he tailored the offense to Cam's strengths.

Let Cam get comfortable and confident and we'll see what happens.

And go get him a legit weapon.
Agreed. Tennessee nearly made the SB last year and nobody would have given them any shot. You just never know and when you have BB, a former MVP at QB, and a solid defense, why not take a shot? And you’re adding an asset that could be valuable in future years even if this year doesn’t go well.

Surprisingly, we held Robinson to 1 catch for 4 yards on 5 targets back in 2018.
 

Mystic Merlin

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I just don’t see Bill handing Robinson a top of market extension - which is presumably what Robinson wants - in connection with a trade. There is too much uncertainty about the cap next year for Bill to lay out a big contract at 15M plus AAV. Hard to see a scenario where the acquiring team can get away with not extending him if that’s Robinson’s goal here.

Anyways, I think it is moot because I bet Chicago weathers it, as he’s by far their best offensive skill player and they have playoff aspirations that become notably dimmer without him.
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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The Patriots opt outs all get tacked on to next year's cap. They gave $5 million free money to Gilmore. If Newton stays healthy he will earn significant incentives for this year which will have to be paid out of next year's cap. And none of that takes into account they likely are going to have to pay more than 1.5 million for Cam next year (or someone else).

Looking at the big cap number right now it's easy to get misled and the only thing that changed from when they were a team with virtually no cap room is that they shifted obligations from this year to next with opt outs.

Where the heck are they going to get 16/17ths of $10.9 million to sign Allen Robinson for the rest of the year?
 

BigSoxFan

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The Patriots opt outs all get tacked on to next year's cap. They gave $5 million free money to Gilmore. If Newton stays healthy he will earn significant incentives for this year which will have to be paid out of next year's cap. And none of that takes into account they likely are going to have to pay more than 1.5 million for Cam next year (or someone else).

Looking at the big cap number right now it's easy to get misled and the only thing that changed from when they were a team with virtually no cap room is that they shifted obligations from this year to next with opt outs.

Where the heck are they going to get 16/17ths of $10.9 million to sign Allen Robinson for the rest of the year?
Miguel says they have about $25.5M in cap space. I think fitting him in this year is doable. The larger question of giving up valuable pick(s) and paying Robinson a market deal going forward is a valid one. He clearly is unhappy with his situation and is taking note of the recent WR extensions to Hopkins, Allen, etc.
 

54thMA

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The Patriots opt outs all get tacked on to next year's cap. They gave $5 million free money to Gilmore. If Newton stays healthy he will earn significant incentives for this year which will have to be paid out of next year's cap. And none of that takes into account they likely are going to have to pay more than 1.5 million for Cam next year (or someone else).

Looking at the big cap number right now it's easy to get misled and the only thing that changed from when they were a team with virtually no cap room is that they shifted obligations from this year to next with opt outs.

Where the heck are they going to get 16/17ths of $10.9 million to sign Allen Robinson for the rest of the year?
Not that it matters for this year, but if they cut Hightower and Chung, how much money would be dead money counting against the 2021 cap?
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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Not that it matters for this year, but if they cut Hightower and Chung, how much money would be dead money counting against the 2021 cap?
I am pretty sure that pro rated signing bonuses carry over to next year and don't count against this year's cap, so Chung is still very expensive to cut. About $7 million I think. Hightower's cap hit next year is mostly salary and he has very little pro rated signing bonus left so I think an outright cut would probably save about $10m.

I do think it matters for this year. If you knew you were going to cut or restructure Hightower in a way that would open up more space next year, you would feel more comfortable about spending some of that money this year I think.

One small note - I think I was maybe wrong about Gilmore. I think some of the extra $5 million cap hit this year is acceleration from next year so they actually will save some of it next year -- $2 or $3 million.
 

SMU_Sox

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Not that it matters for this year, but if they cut Hightower and Chung, how much money would be dead money counting against the 2021 cap?
Chung is an almost 8m cap hit if cut before June 1st 2021. He would be around a -1M cap savings next year so not exactly a cut candidate.

Hightower: 2.5m dead cap hit before or after June 1st. He would save 10m though. High is a great versatile player but 10m savings is a lot of money.

edit: bah or what @DennyDoyle'sBoil said.
 

Captaincoop

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Chung is an almost 8m cap hit if cut before June 1st 2021. He would be around a -1M cap savings next year so not exactly a cut candidate.

Hightower: 2.5m dead cap hit before or after June 1st. He would save 10m though. High is a great versatile player but 10m savings is a lot of money.

edit: bah or what @DennyDoyle'sBoil said.
Too bad that wasn't the other way around.
 

54thMA

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Chung is an almost 8m cap hit if cut before June 1st 2021. He would be around a -1M cap savings next year so not exactly a cut candidate.

Hightower: 2.5m dead cap hit before or after June 1st. He would save 10m though. High is a great versatile player but 10m savings is a lot of money.

edit: bah or what @DennyDoyle'sBoil said.
8 million; holy smokes.

So I guess he's not getting cut then.
 

DJnVa

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Yahoo Sports push to my phone--"Why Robinson to Pats Makes Sense"
 

DennyDoyle'sBoil

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8 million; holy smokes.

So I guess he's not getting cut then.
Never say never with Bill, but, yeah. Just crappy timing with the extension and then the opt out and so they paid him thinking it would be the next couple of years but now it will be when he's older. (To be very clear I'm not criticizing him for opting out. It's a very minor consequence of this shitty zombie apocalypse that has created far more havoc in the world than this little first-world accounting problem! I'm just identifying why it is what it is. And the truth is that previous Chung extensions gave the Patriots flexibility that helped them get to Super Bowls. Easy to only look forward on cap hits and forget what various cap gymnastics in the past might have meant at the time.)
 

54thMA

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Never say never with Bill, but, yeah. Just crappy timing with the extension and then the opt out and so they paid him thinking it would be the next couple of years but now it will be when he's older. (To be very clear I'm not criticizing him for opting out. It's a very minor consequence of this shitty zombie apocalypse that has created far more havoc in the world than this little first-world accounting problem! I'm just identifying why it is what it is. And the truth is that previous Chung extensions gave the Patriots flexibility that helped them get to Super Bowls. Easy to only look forward on cap hits and forget what various cap gymnastics in the past might have meant at the time.)
Extensions giveth and extensions taketh away and as you said, no ones fault for sure with what happened.

What the McCourty brothers decide to do in 2021 plays into this as well I'm assuming.

As well as what happens with Cam.
 

Shelterdog

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Yeah or late career Dez Bryant, maybe
Not a late career Dez Bryant. His combine is very similar to Dez Bryant’s combine, just for whatever the reason he has yet to demonstrate that kind of power and aggressiveness. To my eyes he plays slower than his combine number which kind of suggests that he’s still thinking too much and not playing fluidly.

Lots of receivers have come into their own later in their career and he’s still one game into his second year, but obviously the longer he plays at a low to middling level the lower the chance that he breaks out.
 
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I agree with what most folks here are saying re: Harry's disappointing start, and the elements of his game that appear unchangeable. That said, he's only 8 or so games into his NFL career, and while it's infuriating that every single play he's involved in seems like "an event," I think it's worth being patient for, say, 15 more games. After that, we can likely shrug and say, "It is what it is." FTR, I'd give up a 2nd+ for either of those receivers. I believe Odell and Bill have a mutual admiration society thing happening, and he and Cam are very close.
 

Super Nomario

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On Harry, I think about just how different the perception of his performance would have been Sunday had his two worst plays gone according to plan. Case in point, he (justifiably) took heat for not finishing his run better on the 1st quarter swing pass against a 185# corner. While he should have been the trucker and not the truckee, Edelman blew his blocking assignment on the play which allowed the CB to tackle Harry. If Edelman executed the block, Harry was off to the races (and with his speed, however far the race would have gone). That was ripe for a chunk play. Then obviously the fumble; the good news is that it's a correctable mistake. But Baker also deserves credit and is one of the few LBs in the league who could have made that play to cause the fumble. Baker has + to ++ speed (4.53 combine) and movement skills. The median NFL LB probably doesn't make that play and Harry scores the TD. Again, the mistake was on him but the play design was beautiful and Harry actually did a really nice job of navigating through traffic to run the route. Two little changes (better Edelman block, Harry protecting the ball better or matched up against a non-Baker type LB), and I imagine the Harry narrative would have been a lot different.

(It's entirely possible I'm just talking myself into a Harry stan)
Neither of those plays took anything special from Harry. The first, he went in orbit motion from a tailback alignment, so he was wide open; his man had to work through traffic from the other side of the field, and was in good position to clean up the tackle even if Harry had been able to break the attempt from Edelman's guy.

On the fumble play, Harry tunneled behind the LOS, so he wasn't really working through traffic.

Both of these were trying to give him an easy touch so he could make a play, and he didn't really do it. That doesn't concern me going forward, but I'm also not going to give him any credit for getting a schemed touch and not making anyone miss. Any player can do that.

On the second play, it's not a talking point if that happens literally anywhere else on the field, because the Pats would've retained possession at the spot it went out of bounds.
Any time you put the ball on the ground, it can be a turnover. Sure, the specific "bounce through the end zone and OOB" only happens there, but it could have stayed in bounds and been recovered by MIA anywhere.
 

epraz

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Any time you put the ball on the ground, it can be a turnover. Sure, the specific "bounce through the end zone and OOB" only happens there, but it could have stayed in bounds and been recovered by MIA anywhere.
Sure, but my post was about whether people would be talking about it if it wasn't a turnover.
 

A Bad Man

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I agree with what most folks here are saying re: Harry's disappointing start, and the elements of his game that appear unchangeable. That said, he's only 8 or so games into his NFL career, and while it's infuriating that every single play he's involved in seems like "an event," I think it's worth being patient for, say, 15 more games. After that, we can likely shrug and say, "It is what it is."
I agree. Still very early in Harry's NFL career. Interestingly enough, Harry's #1 comp on Player Profiler is Allen Robinson.
 

Harry Hooper

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I think giving him a pass on a fumble just because a teammate fell on it would be dumber than criticizing him for a fumble just because his team lost it.
Going beyond the fumble there, he looked primed to thunder into the end zone but was tackled surprisingly easily. The fumble just added on to the disappointment in his perfromance on that play.
 

Super Nomario

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So.....what happened to this guy?
I think you see some of his weaknesses there, too. First clip, he's pressed, gets squeezed too far to the sideline, isn't fast enough to run past the CB, doesn't stack him ... and makes the grab anyway. But all the stuff he isn't doing (and these were consistent issues for him in college) matter at the NFL level.