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Catching passes and the Arizona Cardinals

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Some Cardinals show up on the good and bad of drop rates.

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Recently PFF has been releasing their independent stats on dropped passes. PFF breaks down their drops by creating a "catchable" ball stat in which they look at each pass and determine if the WR could have caught it. While this isn't a perfect stat, it does give a seemingly purer look at the hands of pass catchers.

Last week PFF released the WR ratings and had Larry Fitzgerald rated number one in the NFL. While his raw numbers were down, his advanced metrics show that Fitzgerald dropped only one pass out of 83 catchable balls thrown to him. This stat reinforces that all Cardinal football fans know, Fitzgerald has the best hands in the NFL.

A surprise in the Top-10 list is Andre Roberts, who dropped just two passes of the 44 catchable passes thrown to him. This stat alone leads me think this system may be broken, as it seemed that Roberts always dropped passes, but according to PFF he was a top-10 WR in this regard. This may justify why the Redskins were willing to pay him so much.

This week, it was the tight ends' turn. PFF broke down those numbers and recently signed free agent John Carlson showed up on the list at number four. The sample size is small but of 33 passes thrown his way, he dropped just one.

This could be a reason why the Cardinals signed him days after his release from the Vikings.

Not surprisingly, the disappointing Rob Housler showed up on the list, but as one of the worst TE's in the league in regards to dropped passes. Housler was the fifth-worst TE with five dropped passes of the 44 catchable balls thrown his way.

Some good news, though, is that the Rams' Jared Cook was also on the list as the second-worst TE with eight drops on 59 attempts and Vernon Davis was 10th on the list with five drops on 57 attempts. That apparently was teh case in every other game except against the Cardinals.

Next year appears to be Housler's last year to prove himself. After putting up subpar numbers and now with stats showing he has terrible hands, it seems that if he does not make a major turnaround this year he will be shown the door next year... and probably sign a decent contract somewhere else.