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SSOG

:MERGED: Let's talk Keyshawn Johnson

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I'd been holding off on making this thread until I had him until all of the drafts where I wanted him (he's on all my teams but 1, where I'm going to let him slide for the sake of diversifying my rosters). I just grabbed him in the last league I was targetting him in, so here comes the thread.

First off, let's look at his expected projections. Keyshawn is currently being drafted as the #38 WR off the board, according to AntSports. The FBG Consensus has Johnson ranked as the 37th best WR (only Wimer has him in the top-30, as the #26 overall WR). LHUCKS actually called him *OVERRATED* at that spot. This, in my mind, is just insanity.

A History of Success:

In his 10-year career, he has finished as WR22, 23, 5, 12, 21, 28, 21, 53, 27, and 28. That's only ONCE in his entire career where he has failed to finish in the top 30- and that was the season where Tampa deactivated him for 6 games. Over the first 11 games of the season (the games when he was activated), he ranked as the #23 WR in the league. Pro-rate his numbers over that season and he'd have 72/960/5, which would have been good for the #19 finish.

Think about that for a second. 10 years in the league, 10 straight top-30 finishes. That's pretty impressive. It becomes even MORE impressive when you realize that he's put up those numbers for 3 different teams, under 4 different coaches.

A Career without injuries:

Aside from the 6 games he was deactivated in Tampa, there were 154 games that Keyshawn could have possibly appeared in. He has appeared in 151 of them. If you draft Keyshawn, you will get him for 16 games. At this point in time, that's as close to a certainty as there is in Fantasy Football. He's basically the Brett Favre of Wide Receivers.

A Favorable System:

A lot of people view Carolina as the Steve Smith show- a 1-receiver offense. This is not true at all. Carolina has had a lot of problems finding a reliable #2 WR, but when they've had one, they've used him.

Let's go back to 2003- the last time that Carolina had a quality WR2. Muhsin Muhammed was WR2 that season, and put up 54/837/3. That was good for a WR32 finish. There are two more facts to keep in mind about that. First- Muhammad did not have the pedigree of consistant success that Keyshawn Johnson has. Second- that was Delhomme's first year as a starter. He threw a mere 19 TDs that season. In the two seasons since, he has thrown 29 and 24 TDs. If even one or two of those extra TDs goes to the WR2, then Keyshawn's value will only be that much greater than Muhammad's was in 2003. There are definitely TDs to be had.

Ricky Proehl had 4 TDs last year in horribly limited action. I consider those TDs- and then some- as good as Keyshawn's. Pair that up with Muhsin's 2003 yardage, and we have the makings of a quality fantasy starter here.

A Favorable Quarterback:

Let's look some more at Muhammad's numbers. Muhammad has played 10 seasons in the NFL. In his rookie season, he (like many rookies) set a career-high YPC at 16.3 (25 receptions). I think he's demonstrated through his career that this was a fluke, and can be discounted.

Discounting his rookie year, Muhsin Muhammad has played 2 seasons with Jake Delhomme, and 7 seasons with other QBs. In his 7 other seasons, his average ypc was 12.45. His high was 13.8, and his low was 11.7 (which he reached 3 times in the 7 years).

In Muhsin Muhammad's two years with Jake Delhomme, he posted a 15.5 and 15.1 ypc. He did it against weak coverages (his 15.5 year was with Steve Smith as the #1), and he did it against extremely tough coverages (his 15.1 season was when Smith was hurt and he was the only WR of note on the roster). Maybe it's a result of the scheme, but to me it is *very clear* that playing with Jake Delhomme significantly and drastically increased Muhammad's ypc. I expect a similar result from Keyshawn Johnson, who has a career ypc of 13.1, and a high of 14.3 and 14.0 (both of which came in the last 4 seasons, so it's clear that he hasn't been losing much of a step). Even if you expect Johnson's reception total to fall, I don't think it is unreasonable at all to predict a huge jump in his yards per reception.

Thanks to a combination of those 4 factors (history of success, resistance to injury, favorable system, favorable QB), I think Keyshawn Johnson once again has one of the highest floors of any late WR in the game. He makes a phenominal WR3 or even an acceptable (if low-end) WR2 for players who focus on other positions early in the draft and are left scrambling for quality starters at WR later on. His ADP of 114 overall (WR38) means you can grab him incredibly cheaply and reap the value.

What about players who load up at WR early, though? If you put together a roster of Chad Johnson, Hines Ward, and Reggie Wayne, surely Keyshawn would never see the field, right? I mean, it doesn't matter if he has a high downside if that comes paired with a low upside. Surely, if you're loaded at WR, you're better off taking flyers on late-round WRs who could go off and become the next Santana Moss, right?

Well, sure- if you're loaded at WR, then you should be focusing on upside. The funny thing is, though... Keyshawn Johnson's got plenty of THAT, too!

Upside:

Blame the system, blame the scheme, blame the QBs, blame the supporting WRs... blame whoever you want for it, but there's one simple fact of life. For two straight seasons now, Carolina's WR1 has finished as the #1 Wide Receiver in all of fantasy football. This is a fact that quite simply cannot be ignored.

I said last season that there was no way both Muhammad and Steve Smith should be rated as low as they were. Either Muhammad was a stud WR, in which case he would finish the season in the top 10... or Carolina was the perfect situation, in which case Steve Smith would finish the season in the top 10. I think last year demonstrated perfectly which was the case. Carolina is a WR1's fantasy paradise.

The problem? Well, Keyshawn's not that WR1, and Carolina's WR1 numbers might be a bit more muted this year now that there's a real WR2 again...

... but what happens if Steve Smith gets hurt?

Steve Smith is one of the smallest WRs in the league. Not only is he very undersized, but he's also one of the best punt and kick returners in the NFL. Even if he doesn't return kicks, he gets the ball a ton- which gives opposing defenses plenty of chances to take a shot at him. Oh, and he's currently at this moment nursing a hamstring injury. If I had to bet that one WR wasn't going to make it through the season, Steve Smith would be pretty high up on that list.

If Steve Smith misses games due to injury, then Keyshawn Johnson becomes the de facto #1 WR, and the WR2 becomes... well, pretty much no one. Keyshawn would automatically step right into the absolute best fantasy situation in the NFL, and would become a dominant force for as long as Smith was out. The only thing that has REALLY changed with this roster since 2004 is Muhammad has been replaced with the (in my opinion) more talented Johnson. Colbert is still kicking around on the roster, and should still be every bit as ineffectual of a WR2 as he has been for two straight seasons now. Ricky Proehl is now out of town. Drew Carter has 5 career catches. The rest of the WR corps look like extras in a "Where's Waldo?" movie. I don't think it's any stretch of the imagination at all to say that, with Smith out, Keyshawn Johnson would be potentially the #1 WR in the NFL... or at worst a top-5 or even top-10 option.

How many WRs being drafted around Keyshawn Johnson carry that kind of upside? The three WRs taken immediately before and after Johnson are Dante Stallworth, Terry Glenn, Jerry Porter (ADP likely to fall now that he's sitting out demanding a trade), Braylon Edwards, Keenan McCardell, and Kevin Curtis. Do you think there's a chance in hell that any of those 6 players finish in the top-10 this season?

Conclusions:

Keyshawn Johnson has a high floor comparable to the Rod Smiths (ADP WR26, FBGs WR26) and Eddie Kennisons (ADP WR30, FBGs WR28) of the world. He has a ceiling higher than pretty much anyone. He would make for an acceptable WR2, a fantastic WR3, or even an upside-based flyer that you plan on parking on your bench. There is absolutely, positively NO WAY he should be ranked or drafted as low as he currently is. Just my humble opinion. :)

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:goodposting:

100% agree with this assessment, and could not have said it as well as you have. High ceiling, high floor based on past performance and the scheme in Carolina. PERFECT #3WR IMO that can be had in the 10th or so.

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You grossly underestimate Drew Carter. If SS gets hurt, Carter will leapfrog KJ on the stat sheet. The rest of your points are solid.

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I think Keyshawn's a solid WR3 (moreso in PPR leagues than standard scoring) but I don't see much upside there. I would expect his receptions to dip this season. Also, he's never been a big-time TD producer and I don't see that changing as the No. 2 WR in Carolina behind Smith. I wouldn't mind taking him in the later rounds but he's not someone I'm specifically targeting as my WR3. I do agree he's less likely to fail than others who are likely to be found with similar ADPs.

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I like Carter.

Maybe. I remember some people who said that Keary Colbert would be the more productive WR when Smith went down in 2004. Colbert "being more similar to Smith in skill set" and Muhammad being the possession WR.

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:goodposting: 100% agree with this assessment, and could not have said it as well as you have. High ceiling, high floor based on past performance and the scheme in Carolina. PERFECT #3WR IMO that can be had in the 10th or so.

Maybe. I remember some people who said that Keary Colbert would be the more productive WR when Smith went down in 2004. Colbert "being more similar to Smith in skill set" and Muhammad being the possession WR.
Well, Colbert was just a young pup then and Muhammed was at the apex of his career. Colbert was more similar to Smith in skill set. Delhomme just trusted Muhammed a lot more.

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:goodposting: 100% agree with this assessment, and could not have said it as well as you have. High ceiling, high floor based on past performance and the scheme in Carolina. PERFECT #3WR IMO that can be had in the 10th or so.

Maybe. I remember some people who said that Keary Colbert would be the more productive WR when Smith went down in 2004. Colbert "being more similar to Smith in skill set" and Muhammad being the possession WR.
If by skill set you mean drops passes, runs shoddy routes, and can't get separation then you'd be spot on.

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I really think Keyshawn will equal Muhammad of 2003. That season, Moose put up:

54-837-3

I could see Keyshawn getting 4-5 TDs but I think the reception and yardage totals will be very similar.

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Like him as well as a #3. He is dropping big time in drafts. Just drafted him as my #5 WR (also have Smith). If nothing else, he's solid insurance if Smith is injured.

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You grossly underestimate Drew Carter. If SS gets hurt, Carter will leapfrog KJ on the stat sheet. The rest of your points are solid.

:lmao: Carter's stats would certainly increase, but Delhomme will rely on Keyshawn if Smith gets hurt. Carter, while fairly talented, has a lot to learn still.

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You grossly underestimate Drew Carter. If SS gets hurt, Carter will leapfrog KJ on the stat sheet. The rest of your points are solid.

:lmao: Carter's stats would certainly increase, but Delhomme will rely on Keyshawn if Smith gets hurt. Carter, while fairly talented, has a lot to learn still.
If only I had a nickel for everytime someone laughed when I gave them the straight scoop on the Cats.

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You grossly underestimate Drew Carter. If SS gets hurt, Carter will leapfrog KJ on the stat sheet. The rest of your points are solid.

:lmao: Carter's stats would certainly increase, but Delhomme will rely on Keyshawn if Smith gets hurt. Carter, while fairly talented, has a lot to learn still.
If only I had a nickel for everytime someone laughed when I gave them the straight scoop on the Cats.
:lol: your straight scoop here is kitty litter.

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Think about that for a second. 10 years in the league, 10 straight top-30 finishes. That's pretty impressive.

:confused: uh if you consider a #1 NFL draft pick that teams keep tossing around and most years is lucky to be more than a WR3 on most FFLs impressive, yeah I guess. Pass on Meyawn

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Keyshawn is probably a bit underrated heading into the season, but his current FBG projection has him only 83 yards and 1 TD less than last year.

The key thing that SSOG omitted was the fact that Keyshawn produced the numbers he did primarily as the #1 WR on his team, and he certainly will not be that in CAR.

He's only been his team's #2 twice--in his rookie year and last year with the Cowboys (and in Dallas he still had more reeptions than Glenn).

In those two years, Johnson produced 63-844-8 and 71-839-6. With Smith being the clear #1 target, an imposing defense, and a possibly healthier RB corps, I'm not sure Johnson will do dramatically better than FBG projects him (63-756-5). IMO, I see him in the neighborhood of 70-800-6, which is not all that different.

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Marty Booker is the same player (in PPR leagues) for better value.

:thumbup:

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Problem: Keyshawn had a career low ypc last year of 11.8, which is in TE territory, and this was with an excellent speed WR opposite him to compliment him. Was that a fluke? I don't think so. When I watched him play I saw a WR who could no longer get separation, and couldn't even use his size and body position like he once did to make plays. Dallas certainly didn't think enough of him to bring him back even though Parcells loves sticking with his guys.

SSOG- your analysis is impressive, but it lacks any account for recent trends, which is precisely what my criticism addresses.

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Think about that for a second. 10 years in the league, 10 straight top-30 finishes. That's pretty impressive.

:confused: uh if you consider a #1 NFL draft pick that teams keep tossing around and most years is lucky to be more than a WR3 on most FFLs impressive, yeah I guess. Pass on Meyawn
As an actual NFL receiver, he's never lived up to his hype. As a fantasy receiver, he has CLEARLY earned his spot alongside Derrick Mason, Eddie Kennison, and Rod Smith as the most consistantly underrated WRs in fantasy football. The guy never gets drafted inside the top 30, and he never finishes outside of it.

Keyshawn is probably a bit underrated heading into the season, but his current FBG projection has him only 83 yards and 1 TD less than last year.The key thing that SSOG omitted was the fact that Keyshawn produced the numbers he did primarily as the #1 WR on his team, and he certainly will not be that in CAR.He's only been his team's #2 twice--in his rookie year and last year with the Cowboys (and in Dallas he still had more reeptions than Glenn).In those two years, Johnson produced 63-844-8 and 71-839-6. With Smith being the clear #1 target, an imposing defense, and a possibly healthier RB corps, I'm not sure Johnson will do dramatically better than FBG projects him (63-756-5). IMO, I see him in the neighborhood of 70-800-6, which is not all that different.

I didn't mean to omit that or gloss that over- that's what I was trying to address by bringing up Muhsin Muhammad's numbers in 2003. There's a difference between the #2 WR in a place like Indy and the #2 WR in San Diego, for instance. I think Carolina has shown that it's the sort of place where a #2 can still put up quality numbers.Also, I strongly disagree with your projected yards per reception for Keyshawn. You have him projected to 11.4 yards per catch, which would be a career low. As I said, Delhomme caused Muhammad to significantly outperform his career YPC averages. I think if Keyshawn gets 70 catches, he's in line for 950-1050 yards.I have him currently projected to 65/950/6, which ranks him right behind Rod Smith and in the WR25 range. I'd much rather have him than Rod Smith, though, because as I said... if Steve Smith misses time, Keyshawn Johnson stands a phenominal chance of becoming a top-12 WR until Smiff gets back.

Problem: Keyshawn had a career low ypc last year of 11.8, which is in TE territory, and this was with an excellent speed WR opposite him to compliment him. Was that a fluke? I don't think so. When I watched him play I saw a WR who could no longer get separation, and couldn't even use his size and body position like he once did to make plays. Dallas certainly didn't think enough of him to bring him back even though Parcells loves sticking with his guys. SSOG- your analysis is impressive, but it lacks any account for recent trends, which is precisely what my criticism addresses.

Here's the problem with "recent trends". Did he set a career low in YPC last year? Yup. However, the year before he had the SECOND HIGHEST YPC OF HIS CAREER. And his highest YPC can in 2002. Did he suddenly get a step faster in 2002 and 2004 before getting a step slower in 2005?Now, I haven't been following MeShawn for the past 10 years, so I can't say for sure, but my take on the situation is that Keyshawn didn't change last year- his role did. In 2004, no other WR on the team played more than 16 games. Keyshawn had to fill a large variety of roles, since Glenn couldn't stay healthy. As a result, he was used more in the long game, as well as the intermediate and short game at which he excels. In 2005, Glenn was healthy, so Keyshawn was restricted to shorter routes as a result, and his YPC suffered. I may be way off base here, of course, but even if he has gotten a little bit slower- as I said, Delhomme has a history of getting career YPC production out of WRs.I've also always believed that Keyshawn was let go because Dallas was targetting Owens, and there really wasn't room on the roster for both.Maybe I'm running with the blinders on, but I've never really been a big Keyshawn fan, so it's not like I'm ignoring reality here because I'm in love with my guy. I don't even like him, and make a lot of jokes about him. All of my WR analysis, however, has led me to aggressively target Keyshawn Johnson as my WR3 in all of my leagues, given his historically high floor, and his incredible upside if Steve Smith misses time (and we all know how easily hamstring problems can become chronic...)

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very limited upside...the kind of player that always gets drafted before I'm willing to take him.

Your main argument for upside is if SS gets hurt...I'm not so sure there aren't other WRs that can step up. Keyshawn doesn't have the physical ability any longer to blow up IMHO. He's a glorified posession WR.

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very limited upside...the kind of player that always gets drafted before I'm willing to take him. Your main argument for upside is if SS gets hurt...I'm not so sure there aren't other WRs that can step up. Keyshawn doesn't have the physical ability any longer to blow up IMHO. He's a glorified posession WR.

I don't know, I'm just not impressed by Drew Carter or Keary Colbert. If management thought they could hack it, then Steve Smith wouldn't have been targetted so much last year, and Keyshawn wouldn't have been targetted so much this offseason. I also think that Keyshawn is just as good of a WR right now as Muhammed was in 2004. Even if he doesn't become the #1 fantasy WR in the league... as WR1 in Carolina, top-12 numbers should be easily achievable. I also think that, at this point in time, Rod Smith is a glorified possession WR, too. Still a very much underrated fantasy WR.You're absolutely entitled to your opinion, (especially if your opinion results in Keyshawn falling to me ;)), but I'm puzzled by your "always gets drafted before I'm willing to take him" comment. His ADP is WR38. You aren't willing to take MeShawn as one of the first 38 WRs off the board? You think he's actually OVERRATED at that point? :shock:

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but I'm puzzled by your "always gets drafted before I'm willing to take him" comment. His ADP is WR38. You aren't willing to take MeShawn as one of the first 38 WRs off the board? You think he's actually OVERRATED at that point? :shock:

I think #38 is a tad low for projections rankings as I think he's in line for a solid 800/5 type of season. But I never draft guys like Keyshawn who I project to have limited upside in Head to head leagues...why would you draft a WR that will consistently get you 50 yards a game when you can waiver wire that type of production in almost any type of league. To make my argument simpler, here's a handful of players I have projected with higher upsides, but are ranked lower than Key:Nate BurlesonKoren RobinsonKeenan McCardellBraylon EdwardsJoe JureviciusI'll bet you some pretty decent coin that at least three of those five have higher ADPs than Key at WCOFF this year...it's because they have higher ceilings.

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Also of concern is Key's sudden drop in YPC. Here are his career stats:

+--------------------------+-------------------------+				 |		  Rushing		 |		Receiving		|+----------+-----+--------------------------+-------------------------+| Year  TM |   G |   Att  Yards	Y/A   TD |   Rec  Yards   Y/R   TD |+----------+-----+--------------------------+-------------------------+| 1996 nyj |  14 |	 0	  0	0.0	0 |	63	844  13.4	8 || 1997 nyj |  16 |	 0	  0	0.0	0 |	70	963  13.8	5 || 1998 nyj |  16 |	 2	 60   30.0	1 |	83   1131  13.6   10 || 1999 nyj |  16 |	 5	  6	1.2	0 |	89   1170  13.1	8 || 2000 tam |  16 |	 2	  5	2.5	0 |	71	874  12.3	8 || 2001 tam |  15 |	 0	  0	0.0	0 |   106   1266  11.9	1 || 2002 tam |  16 |	 0	  0	0.0	0 |	76   1088  14.3	5 || 2003 tam |  10 |	 0	  0	0.0	0 |	45	600  13.3	3 || 2004 dal |  16 |	 2	 13	6.5	0 |	70	981  14.0	6 || 2005 dal |  16 |	 1	  3	3.0	0 |	71	839  11.8	6 |+----------+-----+--------------------------+-------------------------+|  TOTAL   | 151 |	12	 87	7.2	1 |   744   9756  13.1   60 |+----------+-----+--------------------------+-------------------------+

WRs the size of Keyshawn don't play forever and there was a substantial drop in his YPC which can't be overlooked. Maybe he bounces back, maybe he doesn't but I tend to steer clear of WRs heading into their 11th season coming off a carrer low YPC.

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Also of concern is Key's sudden drop in YPC. Here are his career stats:

+--------------------------+-------------------------+				 |		  Rushing		 |		Receiving		|+----------+-----+--------------------------+-------------------------+| Year  TM |   G |   Att  Yards	Y/A   TD |   Rec  Yards   Y/R   TD |+----------+-----+--------------------------+-------------------------+| 1996 nyj |  14 |	 0	  0	0.0	0 |	63	844  13.4	8 || 1997 nyj |  16 |	 0	  0	0.0	0 |	70	963  13.8	5 || 1998 nyj |  16 |	 2	 60   30.0	1 |	83   1131  13.6   10 || 1999 nyj |  16 |	 5	  6	1.2	0 |	89   1170  13.1	8 || 2000 tam |  16 |	 2	  5	2.5	0 |	71	874  12.3	8 || 2001 tam |  15 |	 0	  0	0.0	0 |   106   1266  11.9	1 || 2002 tam |  16 |	 0	  0	0.0	0 |	76   1088  14.3	5 || 2003 tam |  10 |	 0	  0	0.0	0 |	45	600  13.3	3 || 2004 dal |  16 |	 2	 13	6.5	0 |	70	981  14.0	6 || 2005 dal |  16 |	 1	  3	3.0	0 |	71	839  11.8	6 |+----------+-----+--------------------------+-------------------------+|  TOTAL   | 151 |	12	 87	7.2	1 |   744   9756  13.1   60 |+----------+-----+--------------------------+-------------------------+
WRs the size of Keyshawn don't play forever and there was a substantial drop in his YPC which can't be overlooked. Maybe he bounces back, maybe he doesn't but I tend to steer clear of WRs heading into their 11th season coming off a carrer low YPC.
Like I said, I'm not that impressed by the career-low YPC arguement. The last time Keyshawn posted a career-low YPC, he bounced back and set a career-high YPC the next season. I suppose we'll see, but I would be VERY surprised if Keyshawn put up less than 13.5 yards per catch this season.

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Guest MLBrandow

That was a pro argument, and while he certainly is not the most underrated fantasy football WR this year, clearly he has an unjustified mental stigma among FF owners (a la Aaron Brooks).

Great post, thanks for sharing.

Wish I had something to add to it, but I feel like this thread hits on everything, and your first post very eloquently proved your thesis (more or less).

For whatever reasons though, I still feel a bit of reserve in targeting him in those middle rounds. Seems invalid though (as was my Brooks assumption as well).

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As an actual NFL receiver, he's never lived up to his hype.

He had 1,000 yards on a team that won a Super Bowl. Coming from you, who always talks about how so many top draft picks (FFL or NFL) bust all the time, this was a bit surprising.Keyshawn had a very good career, and was an excellent WR in his prime ('98-'99). He won a SB ring, which not many #1 picks have done. And I'd put him in the top half of all number 1 picks in the last 20 years. I'm not sure what more you'd ask for out of him.

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As an actual NFL receiver, he's never lived up to his hype.

He had 1,000 yards on a team that won a Super Bowl. Coming from you, who always talks about how so many top draft picks (FFL or NFL) bust all the time, this was a bit surprising.Keyshawn had a very good career, and was an excellent WR in his prime ('98-'99). He won a SB ring, which not many #1 picks have done. And I'd put him in the top half of all number 1 picks in the last 20 years. I'm not sure what more you'd ask for out of him.
I don't consider him a bust, by any stretch of the imagination. I think he was a very good first round draft pick, even at #1 overall, and definitely shouldn't be considered an NFL disappointment. In fact, I would argue that he's always played better than his numbers would indicate, because he's a very willing and capable blocker, and because he's had great intangibles and has always been willing to take on dirty assignments, such as going over the middle. When I say he's never lived up to his hype, I'm referring mostly to his self-created hype. I mean, he wrote a book titled "Just Give Me The Damn Ball". At no point has his play warranted the creation of a book titled "Just Give Me The Damn Ball".

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At no point has his play warranted the creation of a book titled "Just Give Me The Damn Ball".

I feel pretty confident when I say you only saw one Jets game in 1995, and you saw what happenned without Keyshawn. Trust me, that book was warranted, along with the public stoning of Rich Kotite and Ron Earhardt.

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:goodposting: 100% agree with this assessment, and could not have said it as well as you have. High ceiling, high floor based on past performance and the scheme in Carolina. PERFECT #3WR IMO that can be had in the 10th or so.

Maybe. I remember some people who said that Keary Colbert would be the more productive WR when Smith went down in 2004. Colbert "being more similar to Smith in skill set" and Muhammad being the possession WR.
If by skill set you mean drops passes, runs shoddy routes, and can't get separation then you'd be spot on.
i think you are being unfair to him since he played on a bad ankle all season long last year. He did well his rookie season. It's been reported he is having an outstanding camp since he had surgery on his ankle in the offseason. Here are a few quotes about him:

Teammates and coaches say Colbert looks more like he did as a rookie in 2004 (47 catches for 754 yards and five touchdowns) than he did last season when he was slowed by an ankle injury (25-282-2)."He's a different player already," quarterback Jake Delhomme said. "You can just see the way he runs his routes. He has explosion. He has separation."Said offensive coordinator Dan Henning: "It's markedly different. He is 100 percent quicker and stronger than he was last year.""He had a lot going on in that ankle, probably a lot more than he or anybody else knew," said coach John Fox. "My hat's off to him for gutting it out and working through that last year because we weren't real deep at the receiver position.""The kid was injured, the kid was hurt, but he never complained," said Delhomme. "He never said anything. A lot of things were said about him in a negative way. He took the high road."Delhomme and cornerback Ken Lucas were among players who converged on Colbert after he made a big catch in practice Monday."I told him, `You look so much different. You're doing a very good job this year,' " said Lucas.

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As an actual NFL receiver, he's never lived up to his hype.

He had 1,000 yards on a team that won a Super Bowl. Coming from you, who always talks about how so many top draft picks (FFL or NFL) bust all the time, this was a bit surprising.Keyshawn had a very good career, and was an excellent WR in his prime ('98-'99). He won a SB ring, which not many #1 picks have done. And I'd put him in the top half of all number 1 picks in the last 20 years. I'm not sure what more you'd ask for out of him.
:goodposting: Among the league's all-time top 50Receptions: 20 Receiving yards: 27 Three pro-bowls and an excellent blocker, too. I am sure any team would consider a career like that worthy of a #1 pick, and exceeding the "hype".

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Like I said, I'm not that impressed by the career-low YPC arguement. The last time Keyshawn posted a career-low YPC, he bounced back and set a career-high YPC the next season. I suppose we'll see, but I would be VERY surprised if Keyshawn put up less than 13.5 yards per catch this season.

Here's the difference. In 2001, Keyshawn was the passing offense. He had 106 catches, but that was because he was surrounded with the likes of Jacquez Green, Reidel Anthony, Karl Williams, et al. Dave Moore was the leading TE. Defenses focused on him, and that was the cause of his career low, and likely the cause of Brad Johnson's mere 13 TD passes that year.

In 2002, his rebound year, the team added Joe Jurevicious and Keenan McCardell, and Rickey Dudley and Ken Dilger at TE. They went to and won the Super Bowl, and Johnson threw 22 TD's and over 3000 yards in only 13 games.

Which team do you think last year's Dallas squad, with Bledsoe (23/17/3639), Glenn (62/1136/7) and Witten (66/757/6) most closely resembled as between the 2001 and the 2002 Bucs?

For me the answer is obvious, and therefore I do pay attention to the fact that what my eyes saw was confirmed by the stats - Keyshawn's not the player he used to be and simply can't get separation. About all he's good for now is bumping around in press coverage on third-and-medium and grabbing a seven yard pass for a first down on a slant or a quick out.

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For me the answer is obvious, and therefore I do pay attention to the fact that what my eyes saw was confirmed by the stats - Keyshawn's not the player he used to be and simply can't get separation. About all he's good for now is bumping around in press coverage on third-and-medium and grabbing a seven yard pass for a first down on a slant or a quick out.

True, but he'll be getting the advantage of being covered by a CB2 with FS coverage focused on SSmith. Not a bad option for third down conversions or GL situations.

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Guest MLBrandow

For me the answer is obvious, and therefore I do pay attention to the fact that what my eyes saw was confirmed by the stats - Keyshawn's not the player he used to be and simply can't get separation. About all he's good for now is bumping around in press coverage on third-and-medium and grabbing a seven yard pass for a first down on a slant or a quick out.

True, but he'll be getting the advantage of being covered by a CB2 with FS coverage focused on SSmith. Not a bad option for third down conversions or GL situations.
Best post of the thread :goodposting:

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For me the answer is obvious, and therefore I do pay attention to the fact that what my eyes saw was confirmed by the stats - Keyshawn's not the player he used to be and simply can't get separation. About all he's good for now is bumping around in press coverage on third-and-medium and grabbing a seven yard pass for a first down on a slant or a quick out.

True, but he'll be getting the advantage of being covered by a CB2 with FS coverage focused on SSmith. Not a bad option for third down conversions or GL situations.
Best post of the thread :goodposting:
The point is that he had that last year with Terry Glenn opposite him and Drew Bledsoe capable of getting the ball to Glenn deep, and he still wasn't able to average 12 yards per catch.

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For me the answer is obvious, and therefore I do pay attention to the fact that what my eyes saw was confirmed by the stats - Keyshawn's not the player he used to be and simply can't get separation. About all he's good for now is bumping around in press coverage on third-and-medium and grabbing a seven yard pass for a first down on a slant or a quick out.

True, but he'll be getting the advantage of being covered by a CB2 with FS coverage focused on SSmith. Not a bad option for third down conversions or GL situations.
Best post of the thread :goodposting:
The point is that he had that last year with Terry Glenn opposite him and Drew Bledsoe capable of getting the ball to Glenn deep, and he still wasn't able to average 12 yards per catch.
There's a slight difference between Terry Glenn and Steve Smith. For one, I'm pretty sure that at no point in his entire career has Terry Glenn ever been triple-teamed.

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For me the answer is obvious, and therefore I do pay attention to the fact that what my eyes saw was confirmed by the stats - Keyshawn's not the player he used to be and simply can't get separation. About all he's good for now is bumping around in press coverage on third-and-medium and grabbing a seven yard pass for a first down on a slant or a quick out.

True, but he'll be getting the advantage of being covered by a CB2 with FS coverage focused on SSmith. Not a bad option for third down conversions or GL situations.
Best post of the thread :goodposting:
The point is that he had that last year with Terry Glenn opposite him and Drew Bledsoe capable of getting the ball to Glenn deep, and he still wasn't able to average 12 yards per catch.
There's a slight difference between Terry Glenn and Steve Smith. For one, I'm pretty sure that at no point in his entire career has Terry Glenn ever been triple-teamed.
While I have no doubt which of the two I'd want playing playing for my favorite NFL team (Smith - I love his toughness and game instincts), you cannot discard Glenn's abilities out of hand and I think you're overstating the difference between the two guys. Glenn (re)established himself as a legitimate deep threat last year, and he's just as fast as Smith is. Delhomme and Bledsoe don't offer any noteworthy differences IMHO in this analysis. Despite that Keyshawn still couldn't get separation in single coverage against other teams' CB2's. And again, we're ignoring Witten, who is someone that Carolina has absolutely nobody comparable to. Keyshawn still has good hands and is still a good run blocker. The problem is that that just doesn't give you much more than a role player at this stage of his career. Keyshawn will have more value in PPR leagues, and also if they try to use him heavily in the red zone given his size.

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Despite that Keyshawn still couldn't get separation in single coverage against other teams' CB2's. And again, we're ignoring Witten, who is someone that Carolina has absolutely nobody comparable to. Keyshawn still has good hands and is still a good run blocker. The problem is that that just doesn't give you much more than a role player at this stage of his career. Keyshawn will have more value in PPR leagues, and also if they try to use him heavily in the red zone given his size.

I don't think anyone will disagree with your post, but probably a factor in Keyshawn's average are the types of routes he runs. If his job is to convert on 3rd and 8 with a CB draped on him, it doesn't matter if he gets YAC, it matters that he shields the defender an moves the sticks. Is he a deep threat? Nope. Is he dangerous after the catch? Not really his forte either. However, as you noted earlier, the Panthers do not have a TE, so Keyshawn should get even more looks. Assume 4-5 catches a week at 12 YPR and you are looking at a 65-70 catch 700 yard season, with potential for 5-8 TD's. Not a bad bye week filler

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:goodposting: 100% agree with this assessment, and could not have said it as well as you have. High ceiling, high floor based on past performance and the scheme in Carolina. PERFECT #3WR IMO that can be had in the 10th or so.

Maybe. I remember some people who said that Keary Colbert would be the more productive WR when Smith went down in 2004. Colbert "being more similar to Smith in skill set" and Muhammad being the possession WR.
If by skill set you mean drops passes, runs shoddy routes, and can't get separation then you'd be spot on.
i think you are being unfair to him since he played on a bad ankle all season long last year. He did well his rookie season. It's been reported he is having an outstanding camp since he had surgery on his ankle in the offseason. Here are a few quotes about him:

Teammates and coaches say Colbert looks more like he did as a rookie in 2004 (47 catches for 754 yards and five touchdowns) than he did last season when he was slowed by an ankle injury (25-282-2)."He's a different player already," quarterback Jake Delhomme said. "You can just see the way he runs his routes. He has explosion. He has separation."Said offensive coordinator Dan Henning: "It's markedly different. He is 100 percent quicker and stronger than he was last year.""He had a lot going on in that ankle, probably a lot more than he or anybody else knew," said coach John Fox. "My hat's off to him for gutting it out and working through that last year because we weren't real deep at the receiver position.""The kid was injured, the kid was hurt, but he never complained," said Delhomme. "He never said anything. A lot of things were said about him in a negative way. He took the high road."Delhomme and cornerback Ken Lucas were among players who converged on Colbert after he made a big catch in practice Monday."I told him, `You look so much different. You're doing a very good job this year,' " said Lucas.

I hope you're right and I'm wrong....if that's the case then Carolina will have the best and deepest WRs in the league.

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Despite that Keyshawn still couldn't get separation in single coverage against other teams' CB2's. And again, we're ignoring Witten, who is someone that Carolina has absolutely nobody comparable to.

Keyshawn still has good hands and is still a good run blocker. The problem is that that just doesn't give you much more than a role player at this stage of his career. Keyshawn will have more value in PPR leagues, and also if they try to use him heavily in the red zone given his size.

I don't think anyone will disagree with your post, but probably a factor in Keyshawn's average are the types of routes he runs. If his job is to convert on 3rd and 8 with a CB draped on him, it doesn't matter if he gets YAC, it matters that he shields the defender an moves the sticks. Is he a deep threat? Nope. Is he dangerous after the catch? Not really his forte either.

However, as you noted earlier, the Panthers do not have a TE, so Keyshawn should get even more looks. Assume 4-5 catches a week at 12 YPR and you are looking at a 65-70 catch 700 yard season, with potential for 5-8 TD's. Not a bad bye week filler

He can hang on to the ball too.

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thanks for reviving this thread. I agree with KJ being undervalued and being able be a good performer as the big reciever for CAR. The situation looks ideal for him to succeed. And regarding an earlier post comparing Smith to Genn, even if they have equal speed why did Smith lead the league as a WR. I haven't looked at the stats to prove this out but Smith is amazingly elusive after the catch and as such would seem to command more attention prior to the catch so that he can be contained. He was unstoppable in many games. This has to help KJ and I'll be taking him earlier than the FBG projections.

Not to hijack but there are other undervalued WR's on my list. I don't believe for a second that Darrell Jackson should be going where FBG's has him at. He's the go to guy in SEA and came back from knee injury to put up quality numbers in the playoffs. I'd take him at WR15.

I'd also try to lock in TJ Hou'sYourDaddy at WR13 because where there are risks out there he can be banked at WR13 and you know you'll get that value.

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"In his 10-year career, he has finished as WR22, 23, 5, 12, 21, 28, 21, 53, 27, and 28"

In Keys first six years I highly doubt he outplayed his ADP. When he was #23 in scoring, he probably was in the top 5-10 off the board and so forth.

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im sitting him in favor of a bryant this week but will prob regret it... :wall:

but im on board, just like playing with fire

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I like Key too as my 4/5 receiver, I can see him getting 650 and 4 tds this year. Good value for how late you can draft him.

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"In his 10-year career, he has finished as WR22, 23, 5, 12, 21, 28, 21, 53, 27, and 28"In Keys first six years I highly doubt he outplayed his ADP. When he was #23 in scoring, he probably was in the top 5-10 off the board and so forth.

What difference does that make? Keyshawn Johnson could have been the first *AND* second player selected in every single fantasy league ever held since the day he was born, and that wouldn't make one bit of difference in terms of his value this year.

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"In his 10-year career, he has finished as WR22, 23, 5, 12, 21, 28, 21, 53, 27, and 28"In Keys first six years I highly doubt he outplayed his ADP. When he was #23 in scoring, he probably was in the top 5-10 off the board and so forth.

What difference does that make? Keyshawn Johnson could have been the first *AND* second player selected in every single fantasy league ever held since the day he was born, and that wouldn't make one bit of difference in terms of his value this year.
In your opening thread you were talking "history of sucess" Actually last season and possibly this season will be the only time Key has been a good value WR.

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"In his 10-year career, he has finished as WR22, 23, 5, 12, 21, 28, 21, 53, 27, and 28"In Keys first six years I highly doubt he outplayed his ADP. When he was #23 in scoring, he probably was in the top 5-10 off the board and so forth.

What difference does that make? Keyshawn Johnson could have been the first *AND* second player selected in every single fantasy league ever held since the day he was born, and that wouldn't make one bit of difference in terms of his value this year.
In your opening thread you were talking "history of sucess" Actually last season and possibly this season will be the only time Key has been a good value WR.
Let me give you a hypothetical situation. Let's say that there's a QB who has finished in the top 4 at his position for 7 straight seasons. Let's call this hypothetical QB "Schmeyton Manning". If I argued that Schmeyton was a proven successful player because he was in the top 4 for a remarkable 7 straight seasons, would you tell me that he really didn't have a history of success because he underperformed his ADP in many of those seasons? Would you say someone like an... I don't know... Schmon Kitna has a greater history of success than Schmeyton because he outperformed his ADP more often than Schmeyton did (and believe me, Kitna *HAS* outperformed his ADP more frequently than Manning)?I'm not talking about a history of VALUE here, I'm talking about a history of success. Where a player was drafted before the season started has absolutely nothing to do with how successful that player was during the season. Whether Keyshawn was drafted 1st, 19th, or umptymillionth doesn't change the fact that he has NEVER IN HIS CAREER finished as low as 30th, and he is now being drafted close to the 40th receiver off the board. If Peyton Manning was being taken as the 12th QB off the board, I'd say that was crazy, too, since he's NEVER performed that poorly in his career- and that would be 100% true, regardless of what his ADP was in the past.Edit: Let's put it this way-Who has a greater history of success... LaDanian Tomlinson (who hasn't lived up to his ADP in years), or Marion Barber III (who greatly outperformed his ADP last season)?

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Steve Smith is one of the smallest WRs in the league. Not only is he very undersized, but he's also one of the best punt and kick returners in the NFL. Even if he doesn't return kicks, he gets the ball a ton- which gives opposing defenses plenty of chances to take a shot at him. Oh, and he's currently at this moment nursing a hamstring injury. If I had to bet that one WR wasn't going to make it through the season, Steve Smith would be pretty high up on that list.

http://sports.espn.go.com/nfl/news/story?id=2579179

:popcorn::popcorn::popcorn:

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... doesn't change the fact that he has NEVER IN HIS CAREER finished as low as 30th

You keep mentioning this. But only ONCE IN TEN YEARS has Keyshawn finished inside the top 20! If that isn't a limited ceiling, I don't know what is.Sure he might have some value this year, but locking in a WR3 that barely beats out the baseline is not going to win anyone a championship. As others have said, he may be decent bye week filler, but I'd rather take a stab at a guy with a low floor and high ceiling.

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Keyshawn's value has got to be up a little with the Steve Smith injuries, IF, Smith does not play. I picked up Keyshawn after our draft as an extra WR just in case Smith got hurt.

Now I have to decide, who to start. Not an AC question, I will make that decision on Sunday morning. With a healthy Smith, I see Keyshawn as a #4 or #5 WR, a bye filler.

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