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OldTimeAFLGuy

Duke Williams-" I Can Play If I Stay Out Of Trouble"

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21 minutes ago, Shaw66 said:

(...)

And his problem is whether this year he can make the top 3 receivers in terms of snaps.   If he isn't in the top 3, he isn't very valuable to the team.   Think about it:  If Brown, Beasley and Foster are top three (IF - I don't know if Foster can make it), then Zay becomes something like the 45th most important guy on a 53-man roster.  

 

It became clear you were totally entrenched in your viewpoint a few posts back where you said:

 

On 5/4/2019 at 5:22 PM, Shaw66 said:

What you say makes some sense, but not enough to convince me. 

 

So I'm not trying to convince you, but I think everyone needs to at least look at how Beasley and Brown's contracts are structured.  After this season, Brown has $3.2M guaranteed.  He has half a million dollars PER YEAR tied up in game-day roster bonuses - $1.5M overall.  That the Bills did this, and that Brown accepted it, speaks to his past history.

 

What is that?  He has sickle cell trait.  After a great 2015 season, he became plagued with nagging injuries and lost his starting slot in 2016 and 2017, having hamstring, quadriceps, back, and toe injuries.  Brown says the sickle cell trait wasn't a cause, but that injury history and the question marks around whether his genetic profile is a cause, is why a guy with a 1000+ yd season and a good excuse in QB play, signed a 1 yr prove-it deal with the Ravens last year.  It's probably why the Bills tied up a bunch of his money in per-game bonuses.

 

Brown's production fell off dramatically in the latter half of the season.  "Sure" one says, "when LJax took over at QB".  Except, LJax took over as starter Week 10, and Brown's production plummeted after week 7.   He stayed off the injury report, but one has to wonder.

 

Beasley's contract, OTOH, is clearly structured like a guy we expect to keep for a while.

 

Bottom line: you're creating this whole logic train based on a speculative, and potentially flawed, series of premises.  Over and out.

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24 minutes ago, Shaw66 said:

This is good analysis, although I think that several pages back you said Brown, Beasley and Roberts ARE shoo-ins.  Just pointing it out, not arguing about that.   I don't think anyone's guaranteed a slot, but I will be surprised if any of those three don't make it. 

 

You're absolutely right, and me bad: I wrote confusingly.  What I meant was that no one is a "shoo in" for a particular WR ranking or role, and I edited it " with the exception of Roberts (whose KR/PR role is clear) and possibly Beasley (who pulled down a relatively large guaranteed contract) " probably as you were replying.

 

I am pretty confident Beasley, Brown, and Roberts will all make the roster barring IR.  If they don't, it would truly be a most embarrassing (further) black mark for Beane and his WR talent e v a l.  I also think Zay Jones and Foster will make the roster if they come close to picking up where they left off last year.  (If they slack or are sloppy, no promises).  That leaves possibly one roster slot and one PS slot for the rest of the WR crew, again, barring injury.
 

24 minutes ago, Shaw66 said:

You're right about Foster and Jones last season.  As we've said, and I think you agree if Foster makes the next step, he can take the second wideout spot from Zay, leaving Zay #4.  I'm NOT saying Foster will do that, only that he could.   I think Zay's in a real fight for the #3 spot, because the coaches certainly would prefer Foster's speed in the lineup, if he can do the other things he needs to do.  And once Zay falls to 4, he's actually 5 because of Roberts, and the 5th receiver on almost any team just isn't all that important. 

 

Foster must take a big step in several areas to move up over Zay: 1) he needs to dramatically improve his ability to block.  Daboll demands blocking chops from his WR.  They don't have to level guys, but they do have to get in the way and/or effectively "sell" a route to clear out space at the 2nd level 2) he needs to develop a more complete route tree.  I'm not saying he can't, but I'm saying perceiving him as a shoo-in to take these steps next year is highly speculative.

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1 hour ago, Shaw66 said:

I don't hate him.   I have been a Zay defender since I came to this board.   

 

What I'm saying is that he could be a victim of the process that McBeane are running.  They want competition at all positions, and 2019 is the first year where they have assembled enough players to create competition.   And they are building with a serious eye to the future; that is, personnel decisions are not made strictly on what makes the team better for 2019.  2020 and 2021 are always on their radar.   

 

I don't think Zay's done a lot to stand out.  All he's done is be the best of a pretty bad collection of receivers.   Nobody at any time in 2018 was saying, "Zay's a keeper."  Compare him to Milano, for example.   Milano makes things happen.  Nobody said that about Zay last season.  

 

Zay's problem isn't so much whether he's good enough to make the team in 2019.   He clearly is.   His problem is that he isn't clearly good enough, not yet, to make the team in 2020.  How do I know?  Because McBeane will continue to bring in competition at all positions, including wide receiver.   

 

And his problem is whether this year he can make the top 3 receivers in terms of snaps.   If he isn't in the top 3, he isn't very valuable to the team.   Think about it:  If Brown, Beasley and Foster are top three (IF - I don't know if Foster can make it), then Zay becomes something like the 45th most important guy on a 53-man roster.   Why?   Well, Roberts is more important, because of his kick returning.   So that means in importance to the team, Zay is at best the 5th most important receiver on the roster.  There are 7 or 8 offensive linemen ahead of him, 6 to 8 defensive linemen ahead of him, 4 or 5 linebackers, 6 DBs, a punter, a place kicker, a long snapper, 4 running backs, a couple of special teamers, 3 tight ends.   Your fifth receiver just isn't a very important guy, and there isn't much difference between your fifth and your sixth.  

 

Now think about McBeane.  If Foster becomes their number three, then Zay just isn't a key man on the team.  They're mantra is continuous improvement, so they're looking at Zay and his competition in terms of their potential to improve and become an impact player.   That's when Zay is in trouble, because he just hasn't such much to make anyone think that they HAVE to have him.  It's all about who steps up, and who has the potential to step up.  As much as I like him and root for him, I'm not sure Zay does very well in that competition.  

But i think the issue is we are assuming he has reached his peak potential and won't get any better. I think thats a little ridiculous. Many WR(see Eric Moulds) didn't do much their first 2 years and then busted out in year 3...am I predicting that? No, but i think he will improve quite a bit even over last year...I think 70 catches and 900 yards isnt out of the question this year.

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On ‎5‎/‎4‎/‎2019 at 9:04 AM, The Wiz said:

It wasn't until he punched the fourth guy that he started to question if that's the type of person he is or not. 

 

 

I believe his epiphany came mid swing but it was too late to pull that 4th punch. If only he'd been able to pull that 4th punch

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Posted (edited)
7 minutes ago, ddaryl said:

 

 

I believe his epiphany came mid swing but it was too late to pull that 4th punch. If only he'd been able to pull that 4th punch

At the very least at least we know he has good commitment when he sets goals.

Edited by The Wiz
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10 minutes ago, ddaryl said:

 

 

I believe his epiphany came mid swing but it was too late to pull that 4th punch. If only he'd been able to pull that 4th punch

Chuck Norris could have!

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4 hours ago, Hapless Bills Fan said:

 

You're absolutely right, and me bad: I wrote confusingly.  What I meant was that no one is a "shoo in" for a particular WR ranking or role, and I edited it " with the exception of Roberts (whose KR/PR role is clear) and possibly Beasley (who pulled down a relatively large guaranteed contract) " probably as you were replying.

 

I am pretty confident Beasley, Brown, and Roberts will all make the roster barring IR.  If they don't, it would truly be a most embarrassing (further) black mark for Beane and his WR talent e v a l.  I also think Zay Jones and Foster will make the roster if they come close to picking up where they left off last year.  (If they slack or are sloppy, no promises).  That leaves possibly one roster slot and one PS slot for the rest of the WR crew, again, barring injury.
 

 

Foster must take a big step in several areas to move up over Zay: 1) he needs to dramatically improve his ability to block.  Daboll demands blocking chops from his WR.  They don't have to level guys, but they do have to get in the way and/or effectively "sell" a route to clear out space at the 2nd level 2) he needs to develop a more complete route tree.  I'm not saying he can't, but I'm saying perceiving him as a shoo-in to take these steps next year is highly speculative.

Responding to this and your earlier post.   I'm not totally entrenched at all.   I'm not saying Zay isn't going to make the team.  I'm saying I can see the scenario, actually multiple scenarios under which he doesn't make the team.

 

And I agree with you, there are multiple scenarios where he does make the time and is a significant contributor.  You're correct about Foster taking the next step, and you're right about Beasley and Brown both being less than certain to be the "answer" or a significant part of the answer.   I don't know what's going to happen. 

 

After I wrote my last post, I went out for a while.  While I was driving I was thinking about it, and I think where you and I really differ is our view of Jones.   You said a few posts back (maybe yesterday) that the Bills may be surprised to find that Zay is the next Robert Woods if they let him go (trade or cut).   That's where we disagree.   I don't see him ever becoming Robert Woods.   I don't see him as having shown in his first two years any of the potential Woods showed in his first two years, so I don't see how he's ever going to be that kind of complete #2.  My argument in all of this is based on that view of Zay.  If McDermott sees Zay as I do, I think Zay has a real fight on his hands, because it means he can't add much to the team this year or in the future.  If McD sees the potential you see, then Zay's essentially a lock to make the team.  I'd never let him go after two years if I thought he was on the path to becoming Woods.  

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3 hours ago, matter2003 said:

But i think the issue is we are assuming he has reached his peak potential and won't get any better. I think thats a little ridiculous. Many WR(see Eric Moulds) didn't do much their first 2 years and then busted out in year 3...am I predicting that? No, but i think he will improve quite a bit even over last year...I think 70 catches and 900 yards isnt out of the question this year.

As I just wrote to Hapless, yes, I think that is the issue.   No, I'm not saying that he won't improve.  My view is that although he may improve, he's not going to improve so much that he's a significant contributor to the team.  How do I know that?  I don't, it's just my opinion.   He just hasn't shown me much to get excited about.   He'll be a nice receiver, have a 6 or 8 year career, maybe a little longer, but he isn't going to strike fear in the hearts of anyone. 

 

 Comparisons to Moulds just don't make much sense to to me.   He was a a top talent coming out of college, he was a serious kickoff return threat in his first couple of years.   His talent was obvious, as well as his size.   Jones isn't anything like that.   Lots of people would have been surprised if Moulds didn't develop into a valuable player, because his special qualities were on display his first two years.   Very few people will be surprised if Zay doesn't succeed.   My cousin told me early last season that Zay didn't even deserve to be in the league.   I disagreed with him, but nobody was saying that about Moulds in his second season.   

 

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Give Duke one play at corner, if Gronk un-retires.

 

Four people is pretty damn impressive.

 

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1st time I’ve read this thread from beginning to now. Many insightful posts and maturely contributed by all. 

Dukes’ pros & cons, measurables, how he stacks up vs Bills competition. Thanks all!

 

So, after combining everyone’s input on Duke, here’s my take;

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

fodder.

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3 minutes ago, Chandler#81 said:

Many insightful posts and maturely contributed by all. 

 

Challenge accepted!

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Posted (edited)

FWIW, these are two WR's in camp with uniquely different crossroads......the signs at Duke's crossroads say, "Welcome to the NFL"...OR...."Welcome BACK to the CFL"....ball is in HIS court to decide.......as far as Zay, his signs say, " You're Still A Bill" or "Call Mayflower and Start Packin'"......MAJOR decisions for BOTH and I sure as hell hope they make the RIGHT one to fulfill their NFL dreams...good luck fellas.....

Edited by OldTimeAFLGuy
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On 5/6/2019 at 5:02 PM, Gugny said:

 

Challenge accepted!

add this to the list as one of the many reasons I love you ; )

On 5/6/2019 at 5:08 PM, OldTimeAFLGuy said:

FWIW, these are two WR's in camp with uniquely different crossroads......the signs at Duke's crossroads say, "Welcome to the NFL"...OR...."Welcome BACK to the CFL"....ball is in HIS court to decide.......as far as Zay, his signs say, " You're Still A Bill" or "Call Mayflower and Start Packin'"......MAJOR decisions for BOTH and I sure as hell hope they make the RIGHT one to fulfill their NFL dreams...good luck fellas.....

on the cusp as one might say ?

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1 minute ago, 3rdand12 said:

add this to the list as one of the many reasons I love you ; )

on the cusp as one might say ?

....pot of gold awaits if you choose the "right path"...AND perform....:thumbsup:...

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good things happen when good people focus on doing good things

 : )

 Hard work is often it's own reward though.

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For the love of God coach.....dont make me watch another Benjamin stink up my field!   Look how long I had to watch THAT freakshow! If he cant come to play, CUT HIM!

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1 hour ago, One Buffalo said:

John Wawrow story on Duke with quotes from minicamp today- https://apnews.com/31ce09ec664f4ccfa9c73ca5ffd83214

 

Can't help but root for this guy to succeed.  

Amazing read, thanks for posting it. I truly hope he succeeds for not only us, but himself too. I think if he reaches his potential, we could have a very good duo with him and Foster.

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...sounding like Duke gets "IT".................

 

I’ve made my mistakes and I’ve learned from them, so I’m just grinding right now,” said Williams. “That’s in the past. I can’t even worry about that. I have to get better and attack each and every day. Now that I know every day it’s in the back of my head to go get it. I’ve got no more chances to mess up or slip, so I’m just grinding and having fun with it.”

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On 5/6/2019 at 2:48 PM, Shaw66 said:

As I just wrote to Hapless, yes, I think that is the issue.   No, I'm not saying that he won't improve.  My view is that although he may improve, he's not going to improve so much that he's a significant contributor to the team.  How do I know that?  I don't, it's just my opinion.   He just hasn't shown me much to get excited about.   He'll be a nice receiver, have a 6 or 8 year career, maybe a little longer, but he isn't going to strike fear in the hearts of anyone. 

 

 Comparisons to Moulds just don't make much sense to to me.   He was a a top talent coming out of college, he was a serious kickoff return threat in his first couple of years.   His talent was obvious, as well as his size.   Jones isn't anything like that.   Lots of people would have been surprised if Moulds didn't develop into a valuable player, because his special qualities were on display his first two years.   Very few people will be surprised if Zay doesn't succeed.   My cousin told me early last season that Zay didn't even deserve to be in the league.   I disagreed with him, but nobody was saying that about Moulds in his second season.   

 

 

I don’t dig the straight to moulds jumps to excuse every underperforming WR 

 

but i do think it’s important that his salary is $1m and we save peanuts cutting him. As we have seen even in this thread- $1m for a WR3-4 is still a relative bargain. Unless he’s legit beat out by both a udfa  AND a guy in a futures contract from the CFL, there’s not any motivating factor to move him unless he’s some sort of trouble behind the scenes we don’t know about. Him only being a 4 would be a scouting disappointment but the beauty of picking a WR there is that even a disappointment is a great value in the cap as long as not a complete disaster 

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On 5/6/2019 at 11:00 AM, Hapless Bills Fan said:

Bottom line: you're creating this whole logic train based on a speculative, and potentially flawed, series of premises. 

This is a new phenomenon for this site. I do hope that it does not become a trend. 

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Duke and Oliver were standouts in first day of camp according to tweets showing up on Bleacher Report :)

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1 hour ago, Alphadawg7 said:

Duke and Oliver were standouts in first day of camp according to tweets showing up on Bleacher Report :)

Yes, altho apparently Duke stood out because he isn't a rookie and everyone else is.  That makes his standing out a little less impressive, but it still answers one question about him.  Whatever he is, he isn't raw and isn't a rookie.   It's what I thought - he's played two seasons of professional football in Canada, and that's serious football.  The talent level is down a notch, but what they expect players to do isn't.   He thrived in a competitive football environment, and my guess is that he'll thrive in the NFL too. 

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Posted (edited)
8 minutes ago, Shaw66 said:

Yes, altho apparently Duke stood out because he isn't a rookie and everyone else is.  That makes his standing out a little less impressive, but it still answers one question about him.  Whatever he is, he isn't raw and isn't a rookie.   It's what I thought - he's played two seasons of professional football in Canada, and that's serious football.  The talent level is down a notch, but what they expect players to do isn't.   He thrived in a competitive football environment, and my guess is that he'll thrive in the NFL too. 

 

I wasn’t trying to read into it, just sharing that the 2 people that stood out were those two guys.  Nothing more, nothing less, just that’s the comments showing up on Twitter.  

 

Means nothing long term, just good to see him and Oliver starting fast

Edited by Alphadawg7

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