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Zay Jones 2017 Outlook


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I was browsing through another Forum I belong to and there was a thread where a poster grades each team's drafts.  He was discussing the Bills draft this morning, and it got me thinking about Zay Jones.  I play in a PPR league, so I think this bumps up Zay a bit.  He is the FBS all time leader in receptions.  Hands catcher with a willingness to work the middle of the field.  The Bills were dead last in passing attempts last year, but their old OC Anthony Lynn has moved on.  New OC Rick Dennison has been in the league a while, and quite honestly I don't know too much about his philosophy.  He is a disciple of Kubiak and Shanahan, so I see the Bills continuing their focus on the run game.  I was reading an article that mentioned the offense focuses on short passing routes that focus on YAC, and using the pass to set up the run.

 

As the Bills roster stands, Sammy and Zay are the only pass catching options available.  Charles Clay is there also, but I don't see him as too much of a threat.  Behind Zay there isn't much at all in the way of WRs.  And as we know, Sammy has a very hard time staying on the field.  So could Zay be a nice late round pick-up for a PPR league?  I can see him gathering a bunch of catches, with Sammy on the field or not.  Seems like he will instantly be a starter in the offense, and could provide a nice floor in PPR leagues based on Dennison's offense, and his willingness to work as the "Hines Ward" type player who works the middle, catches balls, and moves the chains.  

 

According to FFC, current ADP is WR #74, 14.06.  I think I would take a flier in Round 12 or even 11 or so to make sure I got him.

 

Thoughts?

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He's a legit sleeper in my opinion. They may try to make him "earn it" to start the year and start the veterans, but given their current depth chart it's hard for me to believe he wont eventually be the #2 option in the passing game. If something happens to Sammy he'll be very valuable. I like him a lot it dynasty 

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41 minutes ago, Ohwise1 said:

He's a legit sleeper in my opinion. They may try to make him "earn it" to start the year and start the veterans, but given their current depth chart it's hard for me to believe he wont eventually be the #2 option in the passing game. If something happens to Sammy he'll be very valuable. I like him a lot it dynasty 

I agree.  I can't see anyone in the way of Zay getting on the field.  And once he's there, even with a 100% healthy Sammy, I imagine the short passing game of Dennison definitely makes this guy valuable.  Especially in a keeper/dynasty.  Not saying he'll be a surefire WR2, but a high floor PPR option could work nicely in the 11th or 12th round as a WR3/FLEX option.

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1 hour ago, Fort4242 said:

"He is the FBS all time leader in receptions.  Hands catcher with a willingness to work the middle of the field.  The Bills were dead last in passing attempts last year... New OC Rick Dennison has been in the league a while, and quite honestly I don't know too much about his philosophy. He is a disciple of Kubiak and Shanahan, so I see the Bills continuing their focus on the run game. I was reading an article that mentioned the offense focuses on short passing routes that focus on YAC, and using the pass to set up the run. As the Bills roster stands, Sammy and Zay are the only pass catching options available. Charles Clay is there also, but I don't see him as too much of a threat. ... According to FFC, current ADP is WR #74, 14.06.  I think I would take a flier in Round 12 or even 11 or so to make sure I got him. Thoughts?"

 

Dennison worked with Taylor when both were with the Ravens, so there is some history between the two, which likely factored in. From what I've read, Jones' production had more to do with personnel groupings & scheme than his ability to separate or dominate the 50/50s. A lot of receptions near the line of scrimmage and/or v zone. However, the top rushing team is apt to see more than it's share of zone, as well as base groupings. Love his intangibles: character, work ethic, high football IQ and NFL bloodlines. That WR3 ranking might not be very appealing for some, but what can often happen, perhaps more so with rookies, is that they amass their production over a short time, December. And he's just the sort. 

 

I noticed that Jones' adp is 14.06 whether it be ppr or standard. If you're willing to reach you may want to consider JuJu Smith-Schuster. In standard his adp is 13.09, but shoots up to 9.11 in ppr. A key similarity between him & Jones is that he fits exactly what the Steelers want. A guy with size, speed & strength who can get vertical & win what's contested. I like him a lot!    

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I'm not a huge fan of the talent but he definitely has the opportunity.  That said he's a low ceiling rookie on a low ceiling passing offense.  

 

He'll probably log more snaps than any other rookie WR and who knows where Sammy will be next season, so if you want a cheap PPR dynasty hold he's worth a look.  Redraft+standard I don't think he'll do much for you.  

 

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A guy with size, speed & strength who can get vertical & win what's contested. I like him a lot!    

His straight line speed is good on paper but he doesn't play that way.  He's a possession receiver that you hope can turn into a YAC guy, he does have great hands. 

Edited by Mad_Jens
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  • 2 months later...

Lots of good reports coming out of camp about Zay Jones.  The one thing I'm worried about is Boldin getting signed in Buffalo.  I am eyeing Jones with one of the last picks in my PPR Keeper draft as long as Boldin doesn't put his pen to paper up there.  This guy's measurables are everything you look for in a WR and he can be a huge asset alongside Watkins with a decent shot of taking over the WR1 role with the all too likely Watkins injury.  

 

This doesn't mean much, but I watched a few interviews and Zay seems like a really smart kid.  Well spoken.  Seems dedicated to his craft.  

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I'm not worried about Zay, but will Tyrod have the ability to get him the ball? 

Camp reports on Tyrod's accuracy is not good. He's over throwing and under throwing balls and frustrating WRs. 

I'd still rather own Zay at his ADP than fix or repair daily, Watkins. 

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Bills acquired WR Jordan Matthews and a 2018 third-round pick from the Eagles in exchange for CB Ronald Darby.

 

Zay Jones was a great possession receiver in college.  Boldin ran most of his routes out of the slot last year.  Matthews was being pushed into the slot and doing his best work there when healthy.  How do you think these three guys line up now?

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6 hours ago, SvanE42 said:

Bills acquired WR Jordan Matthews and a 2018 third-round pick from the Eagles in exchange for CB Ronald Darby.

 

Zay Jones was a great possession receiver in college.  Boldin ran most of his routes out of the slot last year.  Matthews was being pushed into the slot and doing his best work there when healthy.  How do you think these three guys line up now?

 

This is a great question. One way or another someone is going to be out of the position of their strength and likely be terrible. 

 

I'm really struggling with who to throw a dart at with either Zay or Mathews. I'll likely lean Mathews, but him getting the play book down in time and playing out of position relative to his strengths will be something I monitor very closely 

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6 hours ago, TX Babe Ruth said:

Zay owners that got him in the 15th round hearing about the Watkins trade.

 

Related image

 

Umm... I'm not seeing the same upside you are. Low volume offense. Zay Jones is a slot guy who has never had a high ypr in college and came to an offense that throws the ball less than every other team in the NFL.... he's going to need volume to succeed.  Why would you take a chance on the fifth option in this offense? Matthews, Boldin, McCoy, Clay, then maybe Jones if he starts, but I feel like the Bills use a lot of 2 WR sets; more than most teams.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Watkins is gone.

Woods is gone.

Goodwin is gone.

Boldin is gone.

 

Who's left?  Matthews, Clay, and Zay.  Seriously, who else is left?  Where are all the targets gonna go?  Honestly have no clue who is left on the depth chart.

 

Jordan Matthews has had his chance and failed on numerous occasions to prove he can be the #1 outside guy, to actually produce with a lot of volume.  Maybe he does get the most volume, but it will be from the slot:

 

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"Bills coach Sean McDermott said second-round WR Zay Jones will primarily play on the outside."

 

Sean McDermott is from the Shanahan coaching tree (I believe).  Zone running, feed the X receiver with targets.  

 

Not only the coach, but the QB as well are more focused outside than in.  Tyrod Taylor's strengths is not his intermediate passing game.

 

Add to all this... the Bills may lead the league in garbage time, tank mode engaged.

 

Under-rated and relatively unknown WR from a small school, but he's 6'1" 200lb and is in a plus situation.

 

I'm not saying he's going to be a bell cow target hog stud WR1.  I'm just saying... SOMEONE'S going to need to catch balls in this offense... 

Edited by Lord_Varys
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Zay Jones > Golladay....opportunity could be enormous for him.  He proved to be a historic volume receiver in college and now he looks to be in line for nothing but volume this season.  I just hope Tyrod keeps the starting job all season.  

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What is this kid capable of? I haven't followed him much in preseason. I did see his one great catch in his game against the Eagles. Volume should definitely be there. Is he talented enough to make use of that opportunity?

 

 

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