The Focus of Professional Football has released a ranking, and we must discuss. Because offseason.
It’s not Bill Barnwell “these guys might never score” bad, but it’s not great. Here we go!
Russell Wilson, QB 4
Patrick Mahomes, Tom Brady, and Aaron Rodgers were the three highest-ranked quarterbacks.
Some might still feel the disrespect, but gone are the days when anyone with reputation will put Wilson behind like, Derek Carr in a meaningful list. It’s an enviable position to be able to pratter about whether your team’s quarterback is top-5, or top-3.
One might argue that Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers won’t be a better player than Wilson this year, but at this point we’re all just arguing about hall of fame legends. These are the best four in the game, and Wilson needs to finish a season the way he started last year to really shake things up.
Chris Carson RB 8
I actually really like this. There are some ridiculous backs in the league right now, hardly any of them getting paid, even few of them that matter.
For what it’s worth, Alvin Kamara is PFF’s fifth-best and they had Saquon Barkley at number seven.
Carson is an absolute stud as a seventh-round pick who is always among the league’s best in broken tackles. Seattle would be in dire straights if he had not worked out for them, and is a huge testament to making his style of play work in today’s NFL that PFF has him at eighth. That’s ahead of Josh Jacobs, Nick Chubb, and Ezekiel Elliott, three beasts in their own right.
DK Metcalf, WR 15
Now we may be mad.
PFF had nothing but positive to say about Metcalf, then put him behind Amari Cooper.
In multiple categories, Metcalf is a top-10 or better receiver in this league:
Over his first two NFL seasons, Metcalf ranks inside the top 10 in both receiving yards (752) and touchdowns (eight) stemming from vertical routes. In 2020 alone, he led the league in vertical route receiving yards (475). The former second-round pick is also tied for seventh since entering the NFL ranks in both contested catches (30) and broken tackles after the catch (26).
Therefore, our hero The Receiver with the 5th best Defense-Adjusted Yards Above Replacement (DYAR) finds himself at 15th. Even by his much lower DVOA, Metcalf was 12th last season.
What caused the disparity in what we know to be true (DK Metcalf is the greatest pass-catcher since Jerry Rice) and what we were given (one half of the league has a better WR), then?
The PFF rankings regularly mention drops among multiple receivers. They seem really not to like these. Well to that I say.... yeah, Metcalf sucks.
BUT SO DO THESE GUYS
Seems strange to knock Metcalf for drops, when his catch rate is the same as the third and twelfth receivers on this list.
Tyler Lockett, WR 22
Let’s not pretend like we’re surprised at this point. Russell Wilson to Tyler Lockett resulted in a perfect passer rating for an entire year and nobody really cared much except to tell Joe Buck to say it in the first quarter.
Here’s Player A:
16 games, 132 targets, 100 receptions, 1054 yards, 10 TD, 57 first downs, 76% catch rate.
Here’s Player B:
15 games, 101 targets, 72 receptions, 840 yards, 3 TD, 46 first downs, 71% catch rate.
Player A was Tyler Lockett in 2020. Player B? Cleveland Brown’s Jarvis Landry, ranked ahead of Lockett by PFF.
The New Guy, TE like a thousand
However, he came in as the 21st ranked tight end this year, and here’s what PFF had to say:
Everett’s PFF grade came back down to Earth in 2020 after two strong showings in a part-time role the prior two seasons. Across the 2018 and 2019 seasons, Everett’s 79.3 receiving grade ranked eighth at the position. He didn’t have a big role in Los Angeles, but he was effective with the looks he did receive and was one of only three tight ends with 20-plus missed tackles forced after the catch.
Everett’s overall grade fell to 61.3 last season, thanks in part to six drops —more than he had the rest of his career combined. He’ll look to rebound in Seattle as he competes for opportunities with Will Dissly.
Everett’s ceiling in 2018 and 19 is why Seattle wants him, especially with Shane Waldron given the keys to the offensive kingdom. Russell Wilson is historically very good at targeting tight ends, and the expectation is that they’ll give Everett far more looks than what would warrant him an offseason 21st ranking.
People were down on the Seahawks tight end room throughout the draft, and I simply don’t think that’s true. Full-health Will Dissly and Gerald Everett is definitely something, and Everett has the stability to be a *looks for John Gilbert over shoulder* massive improvement over emergency TE1 Jacob Hollister, should Dissly continue to suffer.