Wide Receiver Production

Submitted by jamiemac on April 19th, 2010 at 10:36 AM

Alright. We're giddy. Lets talk stats. Check out these WR targets for Michigan and their career stats.

Roundtree 32 catches ( 0 in '08, 32 in '09)

Stonum 27 catches (14 in '08, 13 in '09)

Koger 22 catches (6 in '08, 16 in '09)

Hemingway 20 catches (4 in '08, 16 in '09)

I feel all four will exceed their career numbers with single season numbers this year.

Roundtree will have a 60-catch, 1,000 yard, 10 TD season

Koger will get to 30 catches. Its tough for a TE to get numbers. He's been a nice, alebit inconsistent playmaker already. One-third of his career catches have gone for at least 20 yards. With QB at a peak right now compared the previous two years where he's been in the lineup in Ann Arbor, I think he's ready to be a star.

Hemingway....its all about health. Can he stay on the field?

Stonum I think can catch the 30-some odd balls that Matthews got in each of the last two years.

Thoughts? Where am I crazt? Who will do this. Who wont do this

Give your off-the-cuff, I am way too high on spring game buzz projections for these guys.

The passing game took big steps last year. There will be an eaual, if not bigger, step this year. I think total TD passes could approach the 24-25 average that marked the 7 years of Navarre/Henne.

Discuss

Comments

West Texas Blue

April 19th, 2010 at 10:43 AM ^

Eh, I think if Forcier plays majority of snaps, I could see those WR production numbers. Denard has made tremendous strides and definitely is the most improved player, but I'm still not 100% sold on him being a very effective passer. With D-Rob, I feel that it would be a more run-heavy offense. Still could get good WR production with D-Rob, but as of now feel that Forcier would only be able to get the numbers that you presented.

Roundtree is going to get his catches no matter what because of our heavily utilization of the slot, so yeah I think 60 catches from his is definitely possible. Still leary on TE utilization; started out strong beginning of last year but tapered off heavily after first month (mainly due to dropped balls and injuries). Really wish our outside WR can become effective; not being able to stretch the field hurts us.

joeyb

April 19th, 2010 at 11:08 AM ^

He only needs to be a competent passer to achieve better production than last year. If they put 7 in the box to stop the run, that leaves 4 on 4 in the secondary. If they put 6 in the box, we have the numbers advantage and we will run all over them. With him being such a good athlete, they will probably move to stop the run and have him beat them with his arm.

UMICH1606

April 19th, 2010 at 12:16 PM ^

The TE production started tapering off because they started to drop the ball. A QB is going to lose confidence in you if you start dropping balls on him. I do agree that they need to be able to stretch the field, and wish that they could get Stonum involved more doing just that. However, RR has stated in more than one interview that they need and want to be able to stretch the field vertically, so I doubt he is ignoring it on purpose. I would hope that if the staff thinks that if they are capable of it, than they will do it.

jamiemac

April 19th, 2010 at 10:52 AM ^

Odoms is hard to fit into this game of 'will they get their career numbers in this single season' because he's got over 70 career catches already, unlike these four, who are expected to have a big roles, but have yet to produce over a full season.

Thats why I left him out.

The others you mentioned are at zero.

But, to everyone, dont hesitate to give me e-predictions on stats of the guys I didnt mention

Jedelman11

April 19th, 2010 at 11:29 AM ^

This situation is somewhat analogous to the situation RR faced at WVU. Its no secret that RR prefers a mobile QB, as such, he has been dealing more with "dual threat" QBs who's athleticism generally outweigh their skills as true passing QBs.

That being said, when you look as his pattern it becomes clear that as the QBs grow as passers they become more rounded and eventually put up better passing numbers.

For evidence click here:

in 2004, Rasheed Marshall connected Chris Henry over 50 times. The next season, Pat White barely hit anyone more that 30 times. Then, the numbers steadily progress until RR's final year (2007) when Pat White hit Raynaud over 60 times.

Basically, as the offense progresses, and Tate/Denard become better passers, the number will slowly improve. Given Tate's background as a passer, there is no reason to believe he won't make the leap a year earlier that Pat White did. With Denard, it might take a little longer, but the evidence (anecdotal as it may be) shows that its bound to happen.

J. Lichty

April 19th, 2010 at 10:46 AM ^

receivers.

Stonum is really the only burner, and they need to find a way to start stretching the field with him so teams do not just pack in a ten yard area. I look at his production as a key. Odoms/Rountree are going to get a lot of balls, but we do need to see Stonum and Stokes and Hemmingway start showing up more on the stat sheet for this offense to be truly effective.

I did not see any of that on Saturday and the only long pass plays were the seam routes by the slots.

Magnus

April 19th, 2010 at 10:47 AM ^

Roundtree should catch more than 32 balls this year. He's the #1 target, whether in the slot or outside.

I don't know if Stonum will catch more than 27. He was healthy last year and couldn't do it. And if Denard is the quarterback, I think we'll see a lot more short stuff with slots catching the ball rather than outside WRs. Regardless, if Stonum and Roundtree get the most PT on the outside and Roundtree exceeds 32 catches, that doesn't bode well for Stonum's numbers.

I don't think there's any way Koger catches more than 22 balls. Rodriguez doesn't like to use the tight ends. Everyone thought that Koger would be Jemaine Gresham last year, and he caught 16 balls. Until I see it on the field, I'm going to assume that tight ends just won't be that involved in the passing game. Besides that, the WOTS is that Webb has looked better this spring than Koger. Koger definitely isn't going to catch 23+ passes as a backup.

Hemingway...eh. I'm not impressed. I'd rather see Stonum/Roundtree on the outside and have Robinson/Odoms/Gallon in the slot. Hemingway had a good game against WMU, but analysts downgraded him coming out of high school because he's slow...and he's done nothing to dispel that notion. I don't think he'll surpass 20 catches.

WichitanWolverine

April 19th, 2010 at 11:11 AM ^

I agree about Hemingway. He had one of the most beautiful plays against WMU (over the shoulder catch from Tate) but was completely silent the rest of the season. Yes, injuries sure didn't help the situation, but I just don't see any consistent, solid production this fall from him. I can easily see him falling by the wayside for some younger guys like Stokes who, from what I've heard, have some great speed.

jam706

April 19th, 2010 at 11:36 AM ^

I still think Koger has more upside, but Webb put on 12 lbs and looked great in the spring game running across the middle on a ~20 yd reception. If he's 12 lbs bigger and can move like that consistently, I'd be okay with him getting more looks this fall

Crime Reporter

April 19th, 2010 at 10:55 AM ^

I'd like to see Stonum get more involved. The QB's didn't really look for him during the spring game. He has all the potential, but seemed to disappear in games last year.

PhillipFulmersPants

April 19th, 2010 at 11:34 AM ^

seems somewhat limited to me. Great speed, yes, but he hasn't really shown great athletic ability in adjusting to balls, using his body, etc. to be a scary outside threat. Maybe he'll improve in this area, but seems a lot of this is natural--kids either have it or don't. Not that I'm down on the guy. I think he's a decent B10 receiver, and could end up being a pretty good one. He can certainly take it to the house if catches it in the open field, but he doesn't seem like much of a threat working in fairly tight one-on-one coverage (whereas outside guys like Manningham and Braylon could get separation and adjust on deep balls). I hope he proves me wrong.

Maize and Blue…

April 19th, 2010 at 10:55 AM ^

during the spring game. I don't remember the ball being thrown his way much if at all. He is the one guy we know can stretch the field and needs to be utilized as such.
I don't think we have enough information yet to determine WR production. Who is going to be the QB? What direction is the offense going? If Denard starts can he do it against a real D that isn't playing vanilla, is disguising coverages, and is blitzing? Will the Oline provide better protection(I expect so, but I need to see it in a real game)?
Hopefully in the future, the spring game can present 1s vs 1s and 2s vs 2s so we can get a real barometer of things to come. I would expect next year barring injuries with a big freshmen class coming in and a small senior class leaving.

Magnus

April 19th, 2010 at 11:35 AM ^

In a way, I feel bad for Stonum. He committed to play for Lloyd Carr and, if we still ran the same offense, Stonum would probably be catching 50 balls a season. It has to be frustrating to play with quarterbacks (and a coach, in some ways) who can't/won't take advantage of your talents.

He and Roundtree are probably our two most talented wide receivers (although Roundtree played in the slot exclusively last year) but Stonum doesn't have much to show for it.

blueheron

April 19th, 2010 at 1:16 PM ^

Agreed -- offhand I can't think of anyone on the current team that was harmed more by the changeover than Stonum.

What I don't know is whether RichRod would throw downfield if he had someone (say, like Henne with running skills) who had the arm for it.

oakapple

April 19th, 2010 at 11:19 AM ^

Basically, you're predicting that 4 different guys will catch more balls in 2010 than they did in 2008 and 2009 combined. When is the last time that happened on any football team?

Roundtree is the safest bet, since he had zero in 2008 and only came on strong near the end of 2009. Then, maybe one of the other two.

Koger is probably the least plausible. For him to catch 30 balls, he’d need to average more than 2½ per game. That seems awfully unlikely, as this offense does not feature the TE, and it appears he will be splitting time with Martell Webb.

You’re forgetting several other guys who figure to get playing time, like Tay Odoms, Jeremy Gallon, etc. Rodriguez likes to rotate his wide-outs, which makes it difficult for one guy to light it up game after game.

It’s safe to say that if Michigan is going to have a winning season, somebody had better be catching the ball, but for four guys to all have career years just doesn’t sound realistic.

Comparing the current QBs to the best of the Navarre/Henne era is likewise unrealistic, as Michigan is now much more dependent on the short passing game and the QB running the ball.

jamiemac

April 19th, 2010 at 11:30 AM ^

Hemingway needs five more catches this year than last year and Koger needs 7 more catches this year than last year for either of them to pull this "feat"

If they dont see their reps decreased from a year ago, it wont be that hard.

The Webb/Koger dynamic bears watching. If not Koger getting 23 balls himself, I think its reasonable to assume the TE group could amass that production.

Stonum would have to double his production over last year. He is the only one that needs to make a major stat leap in this one.

And on the QB comparison, Michigan averaged 24-25 TD passes a season in that era. We had 11 and 15 the last two years. All I said is we can approach that. Frankly, I think we see 20 TD passes this season and that's all i was really trying to say with that one. We'll be approaching that level of production. We'll be in the ball park of getting the same amount of points out of the passing game as we did during that era.

Space Coyote

April 19th, 2010 at 11:34 AM ^

I expect pretty much the the same production out of everybody else and the new guys (those essentially with under 10 catches in their career) splitting the extra completions. I could easily see Koger getting an equal amount, with maybe a slight increase in production from Webb.

I think another key might be how much we run out of the I-formation this fall. We saw a bit of it during the spring game. Out of the I-form the TEs might be the most dangerous player on the field, especially with some of the natural ability Koger has (if he holds onto the ball, again).

I think Odoms gets his, probably some where between his '08 and '09 stats. I really think Odoms is starting to be slept on, even though his production has been solid. But because his production slipped last year they are forgetting how good he can be, and has proven to be (if he doesn't drop the ball). We need to get him the ball as he can be electric with it.

As far as Hemingway, sometimes to torrents of spring don't equate to fall production, but I don't see his numbers drastically going up. With all the talent at slot, RB, and TE, there just isn't enough to get all the outside guys enough balls their way, especially with the trends we've seen of RR offense.

Tater

April 19th, 2010 at 11:33 AM ^

The OL and QB's will have a very loud "say" in how well the recievers do. I think the OL will be improved because they are a year older and bigger. This should help both in protection and in a good enough running game to help open up the field for recievers.

As for getting the ball down the field, it appears that DG is the only QB with a rocket launcher, and we really can't predict whether or not he will make it onto the field this year. I still think we will see a few plays like the 97-yarder, but I also think they will be to wide-open recievers because of gross mismatches and blown coverages caused by the spread.

I think the determining factor on WR stats will be the ability of both Forcier and Denard to throw the intermediate route. If they can get the ball out there with enough speed and accuracy against defenses who are really getting after it, we may be pleasantly surprised. If they struggle, the offense may depend on RB's and slots.

I am always optimistic, so I think that Forcier will fully heal this summer and come out with enough arm to get the job done. I also think Denard's progress is real, and that he will have enough arm to get the job done; with him, the determining factor will probably be recognition of coverages.

As for the individual recievers, I still don't feel that we have seen enough from any of them to guarantee a great year for anyone individually. There is a lot of talent and potential, but there are still a lot of question marks. I like Roundtree a lot, but they have to be able to get him the ball.

All in all, I think the offense will average 33-35 points a game, but with the bulk of the offense coming from the inside, with the WR's being more like decoys at least 80 percent of the time.

Logan88

April 19th, 2010 at 12:12 PM ^

Roundtree: 40 catches, 500 yards, 5 TD
Odoms: 30 catches, 350 yards, 2 TD
Stonum: 20 catches, 350 yards, 2 TD

Koger/Webb: 30 catches, 350 yards, 3 TD
Other Slots: 30 catches, 350 yards, 2 TD
Other Split-ends: 30 catches, 400 yards, 3 TD
Running backs: 20 catches, 200 yards, 2 TD

Totals: 200 catches, 2500 yards, 19 TD, 12 INT

Irish

April 19th, 2010 at 12:35 PM ^

As long as UM operates a run first offense I think your numbers are a bit high. I would expect the QBs to be more accurate this year and increase the 189 receptions from last year but I wouldn't expect RR to call more pass plays. If the QBs can increase their accuracy to 60% collectively, which is pretty good, you can expect just under 200 catches. To give nearly half of those receptions to Koger and Roundtree seems unlikely.

I would expect more RB receptions though. If one guy emerges to carry the ball then I would expect him to be 3rd or 4th in receptions at the end of the year. Though I am basing that on one spring practice scrimmage, a RB seemed to be out in the flat a lot.

colin

April 19th, 2010 at 4:43 PM ^

That's 360 passes to be caught. 60% caught is decent, so that makes 216 catches. So those numbers look fairly reasonable to me. I'm still not sold on Stonum's ball skills and I think Odoms is probably as good or better bets to be the next leading catcher after Roundtree. Also, I really liked Gallon and Robinson, but they might need another year. Koger's production is dependent on the degree to which the two slots breakout (as well as his own breakout potential), but let's say the distribution looks like:

60
45
30
30
15
15

From most to least, I like Roundtree, Odoms, Stonum, Koger, Gallon. Next best: J. Robinson and Stokes.

Braylon1

April 19th, 2010 at 5:16 PM ^

Always thought Stonum should get some time in the slot as well to get him more touches. Stonum doesn't have the strong body or the route running ability of a Mario Manningham to have a ton of success on the outside. He needs to get the ball somehow plain and simple.

funkywolve

April 19th, 2010 at 11:33 PM ^

and maybe this is being overly optimistic. I'm hoping UM isn't having to come from behind in the 4th quarter of just about every game. How many games last year were they behind and predominantly throwing the ball in the 4th quarter? I'm hoping this year to see a few more games where they're ahead in the 4th quarter and keeping the ball on the ground.