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Saca312 posted a topic in Carolina Panthers News and TalkThe Panthers grabbed themselves Torrey Smith after trading Worley to the Eagles. Taking on a 5M cap hit, Smith comes in as the Panthers highest paid WR on the roster. At first glance, it's obvious the Panthers are looking for speed and experience. Torrey Smith brings both of those to the table. Boasting incredibly athletic combine numbers (his 'lowest' athletic metric is still in the elite levels), it's fair to say he has plenty of potential. However, at age 29 it does come to wonder whether what he's shown the past few years are just a fluke, or a sign of things to come. In this thread, I'm here hoping to bring to you guys a better picture of him overall as a receiver. I plan on showing both his good points and his bad and letting you all decide whether the trade was worth it or not. The goal is to not convince you guys on one point or the other, but to show from an objective standpoint his strengths and weaknesses. I won't be showing you what he's done prior to the Eagles. There's already plenty of articles out there on that (i.e. this fluff piece here: https://t.co/O2SQAwFpZ9). Anyhow, go ahead and look below and decide for yourself. The Good One thing Torrey Smith does pretty well is sell the double move and get separation. Against Josh Norman, Smith faces off coverage. Norman is playing outside leverage, so the idea is for Smith to sell his route outside to keep Norman at a disadvantage. Smith fakes going outside and remains inside with a double move, getting him separation. Wentz underthrows, but likely would've been a touchdown had someone like Cam hit him right on target. On that play, Smith shows good recognition of the defense and a solid head nod to sell and fake out his route. This gave him the possible opportunity of running into the endzone with a touchdown. Throughout film, he shows ability to use head bobs to create separation and working well outside the numbers. On the route below, Smith finds himself on a route outside the numbers. To get separation, he showcases a decent head bob that forces the corner to stutter a bit and let Smith get the separation he needed. While clearly the QB underthrows, he does get separation and draws a PI as a consolation prize instead. Finally, he shows decent footwork throughout his repertoire to get open down the field. Against the Rams, Smith finds himself facing off coverage. Noticing the situation, he gets enough depth and stutter steps to the middle of the field into the open zone. Corner obviously remains in his role of staying deep down the field, and to his dismay finds that clearly the Eagles have found an open zone in their defense. Smith takes advantage for a huge gain. Against Waynes, Smith's footwork allows him to get open once again. Does a quick stutter to get open inside and gain leverage against Waynes. While he certainly could be more aggressive at the catch point and catch this (which still would be hard to catch given it was a bad throw), he still shows his potential in terms of using certain moves to get open. The Bad Well, with the good comes the bad. Smith is by no means a perfect receiver, and he has some things he needs to work on. In the below example, Smith is facing press coverage against the Chiefs. Ideally, you want a solid release to be able to get a step on the corner and "stack" him to get open. Smith fails with proper footwork to do so, and gets trapped. Throws off timing with Wentz and also fails to adjust to the catch as well. Now, adding on, he does not do well in contested catch scenarios. All Panthers WRs had that issue, so this is not encouraging. Wentz is in scramble mode so expecting an in-stride pass in this situation is not logical. Wentz throws the ball in a situation where he just has to beat Sorenson at the catch point. Turns head, puts hands up, and drops what he should've caught. In the next example, he still doesn't show the aggressiveness you want in a WR at the catch point. Against the Rams, the QB throws a perfect pass to Smith, landing right in his hands. However, Smith isn't able to haul it in, letting a DB come in and easily strip it out. In this scenario, Smith needs to be more aggressive at the catch point and come down with stronger hands. Finally, Smith has had a really bad time with drops. So far, I've personally seen at least 8 times he should've been able to catch the ball in certain scenarios, but below are two of the more egregious. Getting a free release, Smith finds himself wide open. Wentz throws a perfect ball that lands squarely in Smith's hands. However, much like Ginn in his time in Carolina, he drops what should've been the easy catch and fails to capitalize on a solid throw. Below, Smith once again drops another on target catch. Getting wide open over the middle, Smith could've easily gotten the 1st down and more. However, much like Russell Shepard, he's unable to haul it in on the slant. This leads to an incompletion and failure to convert the 3rd down. Overall Note: The following is plainly my opinion. Ignore if you prefer not to see my thoughts. Route Running: 6.5/10 - He does show the ability to get separation using a variety of moves, such as a double move, head bob, or footwork. However, his overall route tree is limited. He'll get predictable on hitch routes,out routes, and plenty of others, allowing most corners to easily adjust and stop him. Needs to be more consistent in selling out routes other than relying on the same moves that keep showing on film. Diversifying his skillset and moveset is certainly a fixable issue, but this needs to happen sooner rather than later. Separation: 7.5/10 - Does get good separation when relying on speed. Mainly hampered by his route tree and being predictable, but from an athletic standpoint he'll most definitely get separation when the defense doesn't guess what he's running ahead of time. To get better, he'll need to fix his route-running tree so that he's able to take advantage of the athlete he is. Speed: 10/10 - There's no doubting he has speed. Plainly put, he's an athlete. His combine traits are on full display when he's downfield. Get him open in situations like Ginn and refine his route-running for such, and he'll give you the benefits of burner speed. Release: 2/10 - Really poor against press coverage. Cannot seem to get a decent release at the line of scrimmage from examples I'm seeing. Needs to refine technique completely, otherwise he'll have similar problems to Kelvin Benjamin Catching: 2/10 - Doesn't seem to have natural hands. Tends to bobble a bit and not seem comfortable with the simple form of catching. Very Ginn-like from what I'm seeing, and does drop the easy balls on more than one occasion. From what I'm seeing, there's at least 8 drops over a span of 8 games that he could've caught. Needs to be far more aggressive at the catch-point - Aggresiveness: 3.5/10 - Overall, not very aggressive. Will let DBs out-muscle him on plenty of occasions. Really needs to find a mean-streak to him and instill his will to get more chances. What are your thoughts?
Sometimes, the answer's already on the roster. And, in this instance, this may be the case. For what it's worth, Vincent does a fine job breaking down the Panthers three main wide receivers for your reading and viewing pleasure. He's a https://theriotreport.com/caught-in-the-middle-the-panthers-receiver-conundrum/ I'll give a few text samples. Read the article for the film breakdown and a whole lot more.
It may as well be Ron Rivera's motto. "Run to establish the pass." The idea is running will take pressure off the QB and open up the passing game. It's what we're led to believe, after all. However, is this concept actually true? Does establishing the run open up the pass game? One analyst doesn't think so. He gives his counter with evidence to substantiate. Take a look. If you want to look at the original twitter thread, just click the above and look at the replies. Otherwise, just look below. Explanation 1: a successful/high volume rushing game takes pressure off the QB, making it easier to pass efficiently. @NathanE11 looked at this and found it's not true http://www.hawkblogger.com/2017/09/relationship-passing-rushing.html … 2/ Explanation 2: Running early leads to bigger runs or passes later in the game (the "establish the run" argument) @SeanFromSeabeck looked at this and found it's not true https://www.fieldgulls.com/2018/1/3/16808842/seahawks-establish-the-run-myth-nfl-analytics … 3/ Explanation 3: Rushing yards are worth more than passing yards (the Pete Carroll special) I looked at this and couldn't find any evidence supporting it Explanation 4: Teams need to run to set up play-action Again, there's no evidence that this is true http://www.footballoutsiders.com/stat-analysis/2018/failed-completions-2017 … 5/ So, welp @ronrivera
KB_fan posted a topic in Carolina Panthers News and TalkHad some time yesterday to do a bit of Panthers' stats crunching.... first time in at least 2 months I've been near a Panthers spreadsheet. I had a hunch that this season is the strongest strength of schedule Panthers have played in the Cam / Ron era. That hunch was correct: Here's the table with all the data on Strength of Schedule and Panthers' record vs. teams with winning records, since 2011: What I find particularly interesting is Panthers' record versus teams with .500 or better records in 2016 compared to 2017. In 2016 Panthers went 2-7 vs. 9 such team. 2017 is the total opposite: we're 7-2 against teams that were .500 or better at the time we played them. Here's the 2016 and 2017 details: Finally, I thought it worth digging a bit deeper into Panthers' record in close games. It still shocks me that we had 8 games last season where we won or lost by 3 points or fewer. (We lost 6 of the 8)... This season Panthers are 7-1 in close games (+/- 8 points) Look at those close game records in 2013, 2015, 2017. Magic happens when Panthers win close games. I'm feeling like we're about to see something special.