The NFL season is officially in the books after the New England Patriots defeated the Atlanta Falcons in dramatic fashion 34-28 in overtime. Five former Rutgers Football players played in the game, the most amongst any college team.
Most Players in Super Bowl 51— Pick Six Previews (@PickSixPreviews) January 23, 2017
The New England Patriots won their fifth Super Bowl and four former Scarlet Knights received Super Bowl rings as a result. With National Signing Day behind us, and now the end of the NFL season, let’s talk football in hopes of passing the time of the off-season.
Let’s Take a look at Last-Years Wide-Receiver Corp and Try and Make Some Predictions for Next Season
The Scarlet Knights offensive struggles are well documented and it was not due to one single position group, but rather struggles across the board from quarterback play, offensive-line play, and struggles at the wide-receiver position.
During the 2016 season, six wide receivers recorded receptions, including seniors Andre Patton, Carlton Agudosi, Janarion Grant, and John Tsimis. Grant was off to a great start before his season was cut short after a gruesome season ending ankle injury. Ironically the injury occurred on a bubble screen that Grant almost took to the house, however he was stepped on from behind after scampering for 77-yards. Thankfully Grant was eligible for a medical hardship waiver and decided to return for his 5th and final year. Grant adds much needed depth to the wide-receiver corp for 2017.
Janarion Grant is returning (phew!) but who do the Scarlet Knights lose?
Andre Patton: The Scarlet Knights lose Andre Patton (6-3, 210) wide-receiver who played in all 12 games last season. Patton hauled in 33 receptions and amassed 460 receiving yards and a team-high five touchdowns which ranked ninth in the Big-Ten. Patton’s 33 receptions accounted for 28.95% of the receiving corp’s total receptions and his 460 receiving yards accounted for 34.61% of receiving yards.
Carlton Agudossi: In addition to Patton, the Scarlet Knights will be losing Carlton Agudossi to graduation. Agudossi played in all twelve games, but only recorded 12 receptions for 89 receiving yards and one touchdown. This was a considerable drop-off from 2015 where Carlton had 17 receptions for 313 yards.
John Tsimis: Tsimis played in all 12 games and recorded 11 receptions for 94 yards.
Patton, Agudossi, and Tsimis combined for 41 receptions (45.61%), 549 receiving yards (48.38%), and 6 touchdowns (66.67%).
Who is Returning?
Janarion Grant: Started four games for the Scarlet Knights and averaged 163 all-purpose yards per games. Grant accounted for six touchdowns (one passing, one punt return, one kickoff return, and three rushing).
Jawuan Harris: Led the team with 39 receptions and 481 yards. Additionally, he was named to the All-Freshman Team by the Big Ten Network. Harris finished 10th in the Big-Ten amongst receivers as measured by YPG. With another year under his belt, Harris has the potential to be a playmaker in 2017.
Dacoven Bailey: Bailey played in all 12 games, and started one game. Most of his action was on special teams, however I think he will be in the mix for a wide-receiver spot for the 2017 season.
Ahmed Bah: Redshirted
Mohamed Jabbie: Redshirted
Rashad Blunt: Did not see game action in 2016.
Let’s Take a Closer Look at the Newcomers
Bo Melton: Bo is a multi-talented football player with the ability to play both running back and wide-receiver. He has tremendous speed and athleticism and will be a deep threat every time he steps on the field.
6’ 0” 185 lbs. 4.5 (40 speed) WR
Scout: # 6 NJ - # 45 WR Nationally
24 / 7: # 5 NJ - # 36
Rivals: # 7 NJ - # 50
ESPN: # 7 NJ - # 68
Everett Wormley: Wormley has the potential to be a go to go for the Scarlet Knights as he has excellent hands and speed. He also is extremely tough and has the ability to catch balls over the middle.
6’ 1” 190 lbs. 4.5 (40 speed)
Scout : # 25 NJ - unranked
24/ 7 : # 30 NJ - # 182 WR
Rivals: # 30 NJ - unranked
ESPN: # 28 NJ - # 169 WR
Eddie Lewis: Lewis possesses excellent hands and has explosive speed. He is a speed burner and has the potential to be a dynamic player for the Scarlet Knights.
Scout - #24 NJ # 186 Nat’l WR
24 7 - # 15 # 95
Rivals - # 13 # 73
ESPN - # 24 # 160
Shameen Jones: Jone’s best qualities are his speed, moves, and vision. He has excellent open field speed and has the ability to make defenders miss. In addition to his top-end speed on the outside, Jones is physical running routes across the middle, and also shows great patience following his blocking.
Hunter Hayek: Hayek is a crisp route runner with excellent speed and is not afraid to go over the middle and make tough catches.
Ahmir Mitchell: While not officially a member of the 2017 class, Mitchell sat out last year due to NCAA transfer rules, and is now officially eligible play. Mitchell has excellent hands, solid speed, and great size that make him a touchdown threat on any play.
Damon Mitchell: Damon Mitchell, Ahmir Mitchell’s older brother has enrolled as a graduate transfer at Rutgers after transferring from Arkansas. While Mitchell will now show up as apart of the 2017 class, he comes to the banks ready to play and is extremely versatile. He has been listed as a quarterback, running back, wide receiver, and punt return specialist while at Arkansas.
Way to Early Depth Chart Prediction:
Raheem Blackshear: While we believe Blackshear was recruited as a running-back, he has the quickness and agility to play in the slot. While shortly committed to Michigan State he was recruited as wide-receiver.