BRONCOS

The Patrick and Sutton signings suggest that Jeudy is potentially a bust

Nov 23, 2021, 10:27 AM
DENVER, COLORADO - AUGUST 28: Jerry Jeudy #10 of the Denver Broncos lines up against the Los Angele...
(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)
(Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images)

The Broncos inking Tim Patrick and Courtland Sutton to contract extensions seems like good news. Both are good wide receivers, hard-working players and the type of guys a franchise should want to build around.

So it’s hard not to like Denver deciding to give Patrick a three-year, $34-million deal and then following it up by signing Sutton to a four-year, $60.8-million extension. It keeps three cornerstone-type players in the fold for the foreseeable future.

That begs a simple question: What’s the downside?

Well, it suggests that the Broncos may have made a mistake, or two, during the 2020 NFL Draft. That year, with Patrick and Sutton already on the roster, Denver decided to spend both their first- and second-round pick on a wide receiver. They grabbed Jerry Jeudy at No. 15 overall and then followed it up with K.J. Hamler with the 46th pick.

If the Broncos were convinced that both of those players, or even one of them, was going to turn into a star, they wouldn’t have signed both Patrick and Sutton. If they believed that Jeudy or Hamler have the potential to be a No. 1 receiver, they wouldn’t have committed more than $94 million to two other wideouts. After all, that’s a lot of dough to pay a No. 2 and No. 3 guy.

Thus, it’s hard not to worry that the Broncos whiffed on back-to-back picks. It’s difficult not to conclude that their investment in the offense turned out to be a bad gamble.

If Hamler doesn’t pan out, it’s really not a huge surprise. For one, he was a second-round pick; there are lower expectations on him simply because of where he was drafted. In addition, he was never touted as a potential No. 1 wideout. From the outset, Hamler was seen as a speed guy, someone who brought a very specific element to the Broncos offense.

Jeudy not panning out would be a disaster, however. The 15th overall pick in the draft has to turn into a star. The highest-draft receiver in franchise history has to become the team’s No. 1 wideout.

Now, it looks more and more likely that neither of those things will materialize. Jeudy is far from a star. And he’s likely not the Broncos No. 1 receiver.

That being the case, it’s time to start wondering if the wideout is a bust. It’s time to begin worrying what he will become.

Jeudy needed to turn into a player who could have his name emblazoned on the facade at Empower Field. Given his draft position, he needed to become someone who would someday be in the “best receiver in franchise history” conversation.

He’s nowhere close. Not yet.

Some of that isn’t his fault. The gruesome ankle injury he suffered in Week 1 of this year certainly derailed his second season. He’s still trying to find his groove in 2021.

And the quarterbacks he’s played with haven’t helped, either. Drew Lock, Teddy Bridgewater, Brett Rypien, Jeff Driskel and Kendall Hinton aren’t exactly a who’s who of QBs. They’ve led pedestrian offenses, to be fair.

But Jeudy hasn’t helped his cause. He had multiple drops in his rookie season, putting a black eye on what was a decent first year. And he’s turned into a bit of an enigma.

The wide receiver gets more attention for his mysterious tweets than his play. Jeudy’s emojis are more talked about than his catches.

There’s a reason for that. His numbers aren’t very good. His social media posts are at least interesting.

As a rookie, Jeudy hauled in 52 catches for 856 yards and three touchdowns. His 92-yard TD in the season finale was one of the highlights of the season. But he also had 10 drops and his QBs were intercepted six times when throwing his way. He should’ve been way more productive given his 113 targets.

This season has been even more disappointing. Thus far, Jeudy has just 22 catches for 228 yards. He’s yet to find the endzone. To be fair, he’s been limited to four games.

So far in his career, Jeudy has appeared in 20 games. He’s eclipsed the 100-yard mark just twice. He’s scored just three touchdowns. He’s made only a handful of memorable plays.

That’s simply not good enough. It’s not even close.

At this point, Jeudy has been more hype than production. He’s a wide receiver who runs great routes in practice, but it doesn’t translate to games. He’s a guy who posts insane workout videos on Instagram, but it doesn’t translate to the field.

Jerry Jeudy is bordering on becoming a bust. That’s a hard pill to swallow, but that’s what the data suggests.

The Broncos signing both Tim Patrick and Courtland Sutton shows that they agree. Things are trending in the right direction.

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The Patrick and Sutton signings suggest that Jeudy is potentially a bust