NFC South: Greg Little

Guess who led the NFL in drops?

January, 4, 2012
1/04/12
8:43
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The regular season is over and Roddy White ran away with the league lead in dropped passes.

The Atlanta receiver dropped two passes in Sunday’s victory against Tampa Bay. That gives White 14 drops for the season, according to ESPN Stats & Information. White’s closest competitor was Cleveland’s Greg Little, who finished with 11 drops.

Tampa Bay’s Mike Williams finished third in the league with eight drops. New Orleans tight end Jimmy Graham was tied for No. 15 with six drops.

The Buccaneers and Falcons tied for No. 6 in the league with 29 drops. The Saints were No. 12 with 25 drops. The Carolina Panthers tied for No. 30 with only 15 drops.

Guess who leads NFL in dropped passes?

December, 28, 2011
12/28/11
11:43
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With one week to go in the regular season, Atlanta’s Roddy White is back in sole possession of the league lead in dropped passes.

White was charged with one drop in Monday night’s loss to New Orleans, according to ESPN Stats & Information. That gives White 12 drops for the season and makes for one of the most perplexing storylines in the NFC South.

White had only three drops in 2010, when he led the league with 115 catches. White has good numbers (96 catches for 1,227 yards and eight touchdowns) this season, but they could be much better without the drops.

Tampa Bay’s Mike Williams also has had a big problem with drops. He’s in sole possession of third place with eight drops. Cleveland’s Greg Little is No. 2 with 11.

New Orleans’ Jimmy Graham is tied for No. 11 with six drops. Tampa Bay’s Arrelious Benn and Kellen Winslow and Carolina’s Jonathan Stewart are all tied for No. 21 with five drops.

The Buccaneers lead the NFC South with 28 team drops, which puts them at No. 3 in the league. The Falcons are tied for No. 7 with 26 drops.

The Saints are tied for No. 11 with 24 drops and the Panthers are tied for No. 27 with 15 drops.

Buccaneers pass Falcons in drops

December, 20, 2011
12/20/11
5:51
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With Atlanta’s Roddy White suddenly holding onto passes, the Falcons no longer lead the NFC South in dropped passes.

That honor now belongs to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who have dropped 26 passes, according to ESPN Stats & Information. That ties the Bucs for fourth in the NFL, while the Falcons are tied for eighth with 25 team drops.

The New Orleans Saints are tied for No. 11 with 22 drops. The Carolina Panthers are No. 24 with 15 drops.

White remains tied for the league lead (with Cleveland’s Greg Little) with 11 individual drops. Teammate Julio Jones has four drops, but the Bucs have moved ahead of the Falcons by using more of a team approach to dropping the ball.

Tampa Bay receiver Mike Williams is tied for third in the league with seven drops. Fellow receiver Arrelious Benn and tight end Kellen Winslow each have five drops. Running backs Kregg Lumpkin and LeGarrette Blount each have pitched in with two drops.

For the sake of comparison, I looked back at last year’s files and that was revealing. The Bucs and Falcons didn’t have major problems with drops in 2010. Tampa Bay was tied for No. 25 in the league with 21 drops. The Falcons were No. 29 with just 19 drops.

But drops were a problem for Williams last season. He was tied for No. 9 in the league with eight drops. I'll do the math for you -- in less than two full seasons, Williams has dropped 15 passes. Last season, White had only three drops while making 115 receptions.

Guess who leads NFL in dropped passes?

December, 13, 2011
12/13/11
2:41
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For the first time in a long time, Atlanta’s Roddy White doesn’t hold sole possession of the league lead in dropped passes.

Cleveland’s Greg Little has moved into a tie with White for that honor. They each have 11 drops and I think you could make a strong case that Little has been a bigger offender because he hasn’t had nearly as many opportunities as White.

Little has been targeted 95 times and has 52 receptions. White has been targeted 136 times and has 75 receptions.

Tampa Bay’s Mike Williams remains in a tie for third in the NFL with seven drops and teammate Arrelious Benn (five drops) is one of a bunch of players tied for No. 10. New Orleans tight end Jimmy Graham also is in that group of players with five drops.

White, Williams and Benn are largely responsible for keeping the Falcons and Buccaneers near the league lead in drops. The Falcons are tied for fourth with 25 team drops. The Buccaneers are sixth with 24 team drops.

The New Orleans Saints are tied for No. 12 with 20 drops. The Carolina Panthers are at No. 23 with 15 drops.

The next Mike Williams?

April, 27, 2011
4/27/11
3:00
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Although there is only one season of evidence, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers seemed to hit the jackpot with wide receiver Mike Williams.

He tumbled to the fourth round last year due to some background concerns. The Bucs did their homework on the issues, took a shot on Williams and were thrilled when he immediately became their top receiver.

So who is the next Mike Williams?

In this Insider post, Todd McShay points to North Carolina receiver Greg Little. He was suspended last season in a scandal in which several North Carolina players allegedly had improper dealings with agents.

The fact he missed a year of playing time and possible concerns about his character could cause Little to slide down some draft boards. But McShay says he won’t fall too far and Little probably should thank Williams for that.

The Bucs seem pretty well set at receiver with Williams and several other promising young players. But I wouldn’t rule out the Falcons as a team having potential interest in Little. Heck, you could even throw in the Saints. They’ve got plenty of receivers, but coach Sean Payton always is looking for new toys.

Carolina also could be a possibility. Steve Smith could be traded. The Panthers are high on young receivers Brandon LaFell, David Gettis and Armanti Edwards, but they might need to add another receiver from their own backyard.

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