Jakobi Meyers is considered the next Christian Kirk in freelance company

Jakobi Meyers was a steal in this year's free receiver class.

Jakobi Meyers was a steal in this year’s class free agent Recorder.
Photo: AP

March 2022: The Los Angeles Rams are out of their Super Bowl parade for less than a month and NFL free agency just got underway. Fans were a naive bunch ahead of that 2022 season, yes no idea about The storm of game-changing moves lies right in front of us. Before Russell Wilson went to the Broncos, Davante Adams to the Raiders, Tyreek Hill to the Dolphins and AJ Brown to the Eagles, there was a move that set all the big name free agency signings in motion – Christian Kirk signing four-year coin. , $72 million (up to $84 million through incentives) with the Jacksonville Jaguars.

Sure, this isn’t the first move of the season, as the tweet above mentioned, but it’s the first major signing. Kirk just had the best season of his career, hitting 77 hits, 982 yards and five touchdowns with the Arizona Cardinals. However, when news of Kirk’s deal surfaced on the internet, fans everywhere tilted their heads in confusion. Sure, he’s decent, but not worth $21 million a year, is he?

Well, after a season in Jacksonville, Jaguars look like geniuses. Once in the spotlight, Kirk thrived, setting new career highs in every major category. He has fueled the development of midfielder Trevor Lawrence and his Jags will run the AFC South for many years to come. While paying someone as less successful in the NFL as Kirk seemed questionable at the time, it paid dividends because the Jaguars saw what Kirk could become. Every team should strive for a fancy new wide receiver to support their young quarterback, even if that means paying a decent sum. Hill helped Tua Tagovailoa. Brown helped Jalen Hurts. While a lot of the talent recipients may not be available through trading like last season, free agent class 2023 still holds a number of crown jewels in this location, most notably 26-year-old Jakobi Meyers.

What about other freelance agency WR talents?

While other, older receivers like Super Bowl Champion JuJu Smith-Schuster or Aaron Rodgers’ top target from 2022 Allen Lazard might be safer options, the downside that Meyers brings is very reminiscent of pre-Jags Christian Kirk. Meyers thrived in this position – although he did show a the ability to win on the outside is good. In 2022, he lined up in this position to make 333 offensive catches (51.7% of the time) – the 16th most catches in the league. He has accumulated 67 tackles, 804 receive and six touchdowns in just fourteen games. while operating in a very heavy, conservative offense with play a secondary midfielder and Matt Patricia as his offensive coordinator. That was a lot of work against Meyers, but he showed top recording potential.

Now, Kirk and Meyers don’t share many of the same tools. Kirk is a YAC monster with high speed and elusive abilities. Meyers excels in challenging catching situations. Over the past three years, he has maintained a Catch rate of 69 percent on balls in dispute. It was one of the best spots in the league. However, the point remains. Both players are underutilized by the team that drafted them and have the tools to star in the right circumstances. Lucky for Meyers, Kirk paved the way for the NC State production to make a big buck before 2023.

Where can Meyers excel?

The next question should be, “Okay, obviously the Patriots aren’t the right system to get the most out of Meyers’ talent. Who is it?” The simplest answer is to recreate a team in the Jaguars’ situation – good head coach, young midfielder, solid run but no heavy fouls and need for talent in the receiving position. The New York Giants meet three of those categories.Unfortunately, they’re a pretty heavy team, placing 22nd in pass the ball percent previous season. Furthermore, the running game may not be solid for Big Blue in 2023 if Saquon Barkley is not re-signed. Colts and/or Texans are probably the best fit depending on what they do in the upcoming draft. Sure, both teams will enter 2023 with rookie head coaches, which could also change their passing bias from 2022 (ranked ninth and tenth in the league), but that’s almost four check marks we’ll get to.

The Meyers deal could also set the standard for the rest of the free agent class of 2023. In fact, Even so, no one, except perhaps Smith-Schuster, will come close to the annual mean that Meyers will claim. Odell Beckham Jr. was old and didn’t play last season. Allen Lazard has a chance to take over all the targets left by Davante Adams in Green Bay. He was defeated by a pair of wide receivers for rookies. Darius Slayton is inconsistent. Julio Jones is no longer the person he used to be.

The fact of the matter is that some teams have watched other organizations pay large sums of money to generous recipients last season and almost all of which point to exactly the way their brand was hoping. Even if Meyers doesn’t possess the skills necessary to explode in 2023 like Kirk did. I find it hard to think that some teams would not be willing to take such a risk. individual, Even so, I have faith in him. Don’t be shocked when it happens.

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