Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

03 Oct 2005

Charles Rogers Suspended Four Games

For Lions fans, this is great, great news. For the next four games they won't have one of their receiver positions taken up by a guy who gives up on routes, can't go over the middle, and wouldn't know a downfield block if Hines Ward and Rod Smith wrote him an instruction manual. Plenty of people got on my case last year when I called Charles Rogers a bust, but let me phrase it to you like this: Like Ryan Leaf, Rogers was the second player chosen in the draft. What has Rogers accomplished that separates him from Leaf?

Note: At the scouting combine, Rogers was credited with a positive drug test because his urine sample was diluted. He claimed it was just because he drank a lot of water, but he dropped on some draft boards.

Posted by: Michael David Smith on 03 Oct 2005

20 comments, Last at 05 Oct 2005, 2:20pm by Jim A


by ABW (not verified) :: Mon, 10/03/2005 - 9:08pm

So MDS, how do you really feel about Charles Rogers?

by B (not verified) :: Mon, 10/03/2005 - 9:14pm

Uhhh, his career passer rating is higher than Leaf's?

by DavidH (not verified) :: Mon, 10/03/2005 - 9:42pm

I don't have Leaf's stats in front of me, but I'm pretty sure Rogers leads in broken collarbones, as well.

by Trogdor (not verified) :: Mon, 10/03/2005 - 10:42pm

In fairness to Leaf, he *did* manage to raise his career QB rating to almost 50. I don't have Rogers' passing stats handy, but if he threw nothing but incompletions his rating would be 39.6. Of course, if he had one completion on one attempt for negative yardage, his rating of 79.2 would dwarf Leaf's rating.

In fact, someone who completed 4/10 for 50 yards, no TDs and no INTs would rate a 56.25, better than Leaf. In conclusion, Ryan Leaf sucked. And that's the kind of football knowledge you can only get here, folks.

by TomC (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 12:45am

I'm fairly confident this positive drug test was Joey Harrington's fault.

by Nate (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 1:15am

I’m fairly confident this positive drug test was Joey Harrington’s fault.
I think it's more the fault of Tollner's overly aggressive offensive playcalling and Dick Jauron's go-for-broke jailbreak blitzes.

by Bruce Dickinson (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 3:50am

It's starting to look like the Matt Millen Era might go down as one of the worst tenures in recent memory (made more so by the contract extension he received before the season started).

that defense looks for real, but their offense might be turning into a money pit. they have wasted 15 million on C.R. according to mortenson. so far that's about 2 million per game he has actually played (perhaps more since last year his season ended on the second play of the year). he might have the only NFL career for a receiver in which he averages 1 million PER CATCH.

i think the worst part of their offense is that nobody seems to know who is responsible. as much as i don't like him, i find it difficult to pin the whole thing on harrington. perhaps they need a congressional investigation. "The Lions Offense Report: What Went Wrong"

I guess they have 13 more games to play.

by mawbrew (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 9:59am

On the local news last night the sports guy was reporting the Rodgers story and added, 'according to reports, this involved a street drug not a performance enhancing drug like steroids.' I couldn't contain my laughter. The idea that anything might have 'enhanced' Rodgers pathetic performance was just too much.

by MCS (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 11:07am

Rogers has collected what? About $15 million from the Lions so far? And what has he produced? 27 rec/3TDs. In 2+ years. And now this.

Just seems unfair to the team.

Disclaimer: Numbers listed above are from Detroit radio on my drive into work this morning. I did not fact check.

by DMP (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 1:37pm

Oh, man, what an unmitigated disaster this situation is. Getting robbed of two years of experience building, being too immature to deal with the adversity, plus doing the drugs in the first place. What a disaster.

by Richie (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 2:01pm

You know who was a bust? David Overstreet. Miami took him 13th overall. He played 14 games his first season and then never again. What a bust.

by MDS (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 3:57pm

Well, that's still more games than Rogers has played so far, and Rogers was No. 2 overall.

by Carl (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 7:07pm

MDS, is it fair to label a guy as a bust when clearly his playing time has been severely shortened by injuries?

I always get the feeling we're not seeing the real Rogers. We're getting the damaged Rogers who can't move like he once did.

If he played for New England, they probably would've cut him by now.

by princeton73 (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 7:39pm

I always get the feeling we’re not seeing the real Rogers.

that's becuz the real Rodgers is out on the street scoring nose candy

by zlionsfan (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 9:35pm

Well, then let's just look at 2005 - we'll write off 2003 and 2004 (oh, if we could only do that for the entire team ...):

Through the first two Lions' games (not yet updated for week 4) ...

D. Tyree NYG -1.0 DPAR
C. Rogers DET -1.1 DPAR
D. Boston MIA -1.4 DPAR

If Rogers were to see three more passes at that rate of production, he'd fit right in between Laveraneus Coles and Lee Evans. Not too good.

Then again, he's the second-best WR on the Lions in terms of DPAR, right behind Kevin Johnson.

Of course, four games from now, Johnson will probably have left him in the dust. He may even pass 0.0.

Let's say, for the sake of argument, that Rogers isn't (yet) a bust. Fine ... but I think you're only allowed a certain number of high draft picks before one of them is expected to turn into a high-quality NFL player.

Defensively, maybe the Lions have picked up their share of players. Offensively ...

by Johonny (not verified) :: Tue, 10/04/2005 - 9:49pm

I believe this will have a horrible effect on my loser league team.

by MDS (not verified) :: Wed, 10/05/2005 - 11:26am

Carl, Ryan Leaf had a wrist injury, which I think you'll agree affects a quarterback more than a collarbone affects a receiver, and I don't recall anyone claiming he's not a bust because of that. I don't really get why people look for extenuating circumstances to excuse Rogers' performance. Yes, he's been injured. So what? His injury doesn't mean the Lions get their No. 2 overall pick back, or that they get the $20 million or so they've already used up in cap space on him back.

by JasonC23 (not verified) :: Wed, 10/05/2005 - 1:13pm

#15 - "Of course, four games from now, Johnson will probably have left him in the dust."

Interesting choice of words...

by zlionsfan (not verified) :: Wed, 10/05/2005 - 1:55pm

Oops. I should have drawn a line before that comment, or had someone else weed it out. No need for me to be so blunt.

Sorry, I couldn't help myself. :)

by Jim A (not verified) :: Wed, 10/05/2005 - 2:20pm

You could probably look at many a "bust" in the NFL and find some injury that he was unable to recover from. Ki-Jana Carter tore his ACL. Tony Mandarich suffered from post-concussion syndrome and a thyroid condition. And so on. It's much sexier to say they didn't have the mental makeup to succeed in the NFL, but this isn't exactly chess, either.