Metric analysis

TJ Hockenson yards after catch metric falls below normal in NFL

The Detroit Lions and tight end TJ Hockenson are aware that he is not yet a finished product.

Lions second-year head coach Dan Campbell would like the talented tight end to win when he should open up, and his run blocking improve significantly.

“He will also tell you that he still has room to grow, even in there, in blocking the run for us,” he said. “I think he is taking that next step, in addition to continuing to improve in the passing game. But, yes, I think it has even more room to grow.

This week, soccer strangersan advanced metrics site, highlighted what many see as the 25-year-old’s biggest weakness: securing yards after the catch.

Writer Bryan Knowles explained what the “YAC+” metric is supposed to estimate.

“YAC+ estimates how much YAC a receiver has gained compared to what we would have expected from an average receiver catching similar length passes in similar downhill and distance situations,” Knowles explained.

Among the 55 qualified tight ends, Hockenson finished 49th in YAC+, averaging -1.1 YAC+.

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Concerns about Hockenson falling to the ground too early are indeed valid, as the statistical measure indicates that he is on average more than a meter shorter than expected at each reception.

In 2021, Hockenson finished the season with 61 receptions for 583 yards and four touchdowns in 12 games played.

Detroit general manager Brad Holmes has decided to pick his fifth-year option, worth $9.4 million, in 2023, but could still guarantee the former first-round pick a contract extension long-term.

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