By Andrew Moss and Joshua Johnson
Alternate Titles: Who the Heck is Cobi Hamilton? / Larry Legend and the Nobodies
New Arizona OC Mike Mccoy comes from the coaching tree of both Air Coryell and west coast offensive systems. The Air Coryell system relies on deep timing routes that work to space the field vertically and horizontally. As a general rule, the west coast system throws average fewer air yards and utilize the running backs more. Given that Arizona has David Johnson, it seems as if Mccoy would want to implement more west coast concepts to get him involved. This system also benefits WRs who pick up yards after the catch more, because the average air yards per throw is shorter, so a higher percentage of a Wide receiver’s total yards would be after the catch.
You have heard all the chatter. You have even nodded your head in agreement that Christian Kirk should be the best running mate Larry “Legend” Fitzgerald has had since Anquan Boldin. Yes! Kirk is the future. However Larry is still Legend and do not think for a moment that any other Cardinal pass catcher will out target him anytime soon.
Kirk falls into a dynamic position with a young QB in Josh Rosen. They should mature together and build a strong bond. While Kirk is not lightning fast, he is still able to create a good separation. He lacks length but he makes up for by carrying his 200 plus pounds very evenly on his frame. He profiles a slot player but I think we would make a much better “Z” WR as he is more dangerous in space than he is as a deep threat. In the right situation and/or the post Larry Legend era Kirk could have an Emmanuel Sanders like impact in McCoy’s scheme.
Meanwhile, the J.J. Nelson owners will praise his top-end speed and they will relish in the fact that John Brown is gone! As a habitual waiver claimer of Nelson, I clearly over-estimate his value. Either that or my heart is too irrational to properly judge Nelson’s worth. He is simply the deep threat. The Cards version of Ted Ginn. On 74 career receptions Nelson has yards per catch average of 18.6 yards. Unfortunately, that is over the course of 42 games played. His season high for receptions is just 34. Nelson has also never had a catch percentage above 47.5%. I do give him a slight pass as traditional vertical routes have lower success rates.
The Chad Williams truthers are currently preparing the bandwagon to ride the rocky rumor-filled off-season. We should see a more polished and confident player with his one year of experience. It is encouraging that the Cards let both Jaron and John Brown walk via free agency. It should mean there is a certain understanding of Williams what can do in the offense this season.
Williams caught fire during the 2017 Senior Bowl week. His ability to mix it up and create separation versus battle tested DBs really stuck out. His name was escaping the lips of almost everyone in attendance. During his final two seasons at Grambling State Williams dropped 1,012 receiving yards as a junior and 1,335 yards as a senior. He also had a YPC average of 15.4 yards and back-to-back double-digit TDs seasons.
Brice Butler found himself in the WR2 mix after he signed moderate/veteran status free agent deal. This is the same Brice Butler who has a career-high 21 reception season, and that was in 2014. The same Butler that caught 31 measly passes over the last two seasons in Dallas. The same Butler who recorded 65 collegiate receptions in 49 games. Many beleaguered souls believe Butler can be a serviceable fantasy option. I think the 6-foot-3 220 pound Butler keeps getting chances because of his size. So basically he is Andre Holmes 2.0?
You might own Butler and feel secure that he will get looks. You may be slightly worried now after the draft selection of Christian Kirk. That is reasonable, but you are still a little queasy. So why not double down with a player that is almost guaranteed to be available (unless you have massive roster sizes). That player is Cobi Hamilton.
Cobi Hamilton is a 6-foot-2/201 pound WR. The former Arkansas Razorback was a 6th round choice (197th overall) by the Cincinnati Bengals in the 2013 NFL draft. In addition to the Bengals Hamilton, has spent time with the Eagles, Steelers, and Texans. Hamilton appears to be the epitome of an NFL journeyman. Since being drafted, he has only appeared in 14 NFL games (8 starts). He has 18 career receptions (34 targets). All but one of those came in 2016 while he was a member of the Steelers. It seems like a longshot, but Hamilton just might make a splash.
While at Arkansas he produced dominant numbers as a Senior. His 90 receptions for 1,335 yards and 5 receiving TDs were all team leading. His reception total was 67 more than any other teammate. Hamilton also had over 1,000 more receiving yards and over 400 yards from scrimmage than any other Razorback. That year Hamilton led the SEC in receiving yards ahead of Jordan Matthews, Mike Evans, Justin Hunter, Amari Cooper and Donte Moncrief.