I feel like alot of criticism that Roy has been catching for 2008 is unjustified, all of a sudden the perception has changed and now people think he can't play anymore, or he's an average WR, he can't run routes etc etc, the list goes on. I wanted to breakdown some of Roy's accomplishments his first 3 seasons in the NFL and compare them to other high profile #1 WR's, so we first see the progression and development of each WR and get a sense of what type of production they had.
Roy Williams TD totals through 3 seasons: 23
Each Respective WR's TD totals through 3 seasons:
Andre Johnson: 12
Brandon Marshall: 15
Roddy White: 9
Plaxico Burress: 13
Anquan Boldin: 16
Steve Smith(Car): 10
Chad Johnson: 16
Reggie Wayne: 11
Basically you get the picture, that's a good sample of dominant WR's in the league, some are big tall physical WR's like Roy, and others are shorter but still considered elite and #1 WR's. The only guys I could find who beat Roy were obviously Randy Moss, and Greg Jennings and Fitzgerald who ironically both had 24 only one above the pace Roy set, good luck finding many more.
The point is that I think this proves that Roy is a dominant red zone threat and he knows how to find the end zone better then most WR's. Jon Kitna was the QB during that time, so you can't use the argument he had an elite QB throwing him the ball, and he was never on a balanced offense that featured multipe weapons to spread the field. Now I know that argument can be used many different ways, one could say he was the only weapon so they had no choice but to give him opportunities while other guys had to share the ball. Then again, keep in mind that Detroit offense wasn't one that was consistently in the red zone, so their scoring opportunities were limited.
Now on to Roy's 4th season, this was the year that Detroit drafted Calvin Johnson, and it didn't take a genius to figure out that Detroit started forcing Calvin the ball and making Roy more of the 2nd option WR. This is no knock on Roy, Calvin is a once in a generation WR that we won't see again for a long time, frankly he would steal the shine from quite a bit of WR's in this league so it's not even fair to begin to compare those two.
64 catches, 838 yards, 5 TD's
Those are formidable numbers when you keep in mind that they had to shut him down the last 4 games after he injured his knee, he had played every game up to that point, so if he finishes the year he's probably finishing around 1100 yards and 8 TD's, again very solid numbers considering the team made a concious effort to feed Calvin the entire year, Roy and Kitna were even on record as saying the same things.
Even when Roy first got here, when he scored that jump ball vs Tampa Bay so effortlessly, those are the type of things he brings to this offense, and last year was really rough for him but I don't see how one year of changing offenses and being injured classifies him as average all of a sudden.
He's never played with a QB as good as Romo, or with as many weapons around him, it amazes me that some talking heads on TV and a few bandwagon fans can act like he's not a #1 WR. Last year was a tough one for Roy most definately, but I think 4 years(and 3 without any help what so ever) speak volumes compared to one knowing the situation. He was a good enough WR in Detroit to be the #1 guy, beat double teams for 3 years to score the way he did, yet some reason he's not good enough to do it here.
I just wanted to state my case that I am fully confident in Roy with an off-season with the team, I know what he can bring to the table, he's produced since he's been a raw rookie in this league and I think he's got alot of people to prove wrong in 09. I am sure he knows anything below 80 catches, 1100 yards, and 10 TD's will probably be looked at as a dissapointment, but I'm expecting a career year, and call me a believer, but better that then all the guys who will be popping out saying "I knew he could do it all along" after doubting him for an entire year.