Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

28 Feb 2008

FO on ESPN: Free Agent WR Unimpressive

Let's kickoff my weekly off-season column on ESPN.com with a look at similarity scores for some of this year's free agent wide receivers: Bernard Berrian, D.J. Hackett, Donte' Stallworth, Marty Booker, and not actually Randy Moss. Sorry about the brief post of this yesterday -- ESPN had it up and then decided to hold it one day to run as part of a larger FA package. (By the way, no "FO Goes Mainstream" box on the front page for the off-season, since this weekly ESPN column is pretty much all we'll be doing for larger sites for a while.)

Posted by: Aaron Schatz on 28 Feb 2008

12 comments, Last at 29 Feb 2008, 4:35pm by John Doe


by Insancipitory (not verified) :: Thu, 02/28/2008 - 3:13pm

the Jerome Pathon similarity is particularly distressing to me. As I think the year prior to his retirement I was settled in to a rather plesent preseason game in Qwest, until I was him duck a pass. He came out of his break, the pass was right there. And he ducked. There was a guy who did that in a highschool football pracitce, and he heard about it for years. To see it in an actual NFL game, well that just blew my mind.

by TomB (not verified) :: Thu, 02/28/2008 - 3:20pm

Those similarity scores sure look meaningless when examined out of context. There's got to be a better way.

by Tom D (not verified) :: Thu, 02/28/2008 - 3:20pm

There are a lot of good jokes in there. I think my favorite is either the Big 10 joke or the Jeff Otah joke.

by Tom D (not verified) :: Thu, 02/28/2008 - 3:21pm

Whoops, wrong article.

by Ted Kerwin (not verified) :: Thu, 02/28/2008 - 4:33pm

Boy, D.J. Hackett went from breakout candidate to ordinary very quickly.

by thestar5 (not verified) :: Thu, 02/28/2008 - 4:52pm

That was the only reason Moss declined? Not because he gave up on his team? Once again, you can actually speak about Pats players in a negative light. Honestly, they'll be okay.

by chip (not verified) :: Thu, 02/28/2008 - 5:01pm

it's amazing to think that Berrian will receive $10M guaranteed to drop another dozen balls this season.

by John Doe (not verified) :: Fri, 02/29/2008 - 3:42am

I think the comment "No other player in NFL history declined solely because he was playing football in a soul-sucking pit of despair" implies that he declined because he gave up on his team. So, yea it is the only reason he declined. It encompasses both the fact that he lost his will/motivation to perform and the fact that the talent surrounding him was bad on a legendary level.

FO said plenty of bad things about Moss before the season began. Mostly that he was washed up and a 'Cog' as they put it on the front cover of PFP 2007. Everyone knows the story about Moss and his work ethic/ attitude, what is the point of rehashing it? I for one am sick of hearing glorified gossip about prima donna wide receivers. I think most of the people here care more about the numbers than the soap opera.

They don't preach about Michael Vick either, or Leonard Little (killed a woman he crashed into while he was drunk), Jeremy Stevens, Pacman Jones. All of these people have done much worse things than Randy Moss. It's not bias, this is a site about advanced statistics, if you want soap opera, PFT will give you all you want and more.

by thestar5 (not verified) :: Fri, 02/29/2008 - 5:02am

I don't want "soap opera" but what Aaron said was just falt-out wrong. That comment takes away the blame from Moss, as if it wasn't his fault. The reason was not because Oakland was a "soul pit of despair", it was because Moss quit on a bad team because he's a loser. If you don't want to talk about that then I don't see why it's in the article at all. Isn't it okay to comment on something thats in the article?

by Ari (not verified) :: Fri, 02/29/2008 - 10:52am

san mccullum had 213 receptions in 1981?

by johonny (not verified) :: Fri, 02/29/2008 - 3:47pm

The surprise to me is Donte’ Stallworth reception % seems rather low compared to his team. Even last year. I always thought higher of him. Bernard Berrian seems like he has the most upside for a team. Is that a good thing?

by John Doe (not verified) :: Fri, 02/29/2008 - 4:35pm

He is in the article because he is a FA WR. This is an article about similarity scores for the FA WR crop. Moss has no similar players due to his special circumstances, so that had to be explained.

How is Oakland being a soul sucking pit of despair not related to Moss quitting on his team? He didn't quit on the Pats, so I'm guessing that the environment in Oakland had a bit to do with it.

Sure, he quit on the Raiders. Along with Porter and Shell and pretty much every player and staff member.

Do people really need to put down Moss every time he's mentioned? As I've said, there are plenty of players who deserve more scorn than Moss. I know I'd want him on the Giants whether he quit on Oakland or not.