Like the majority of quarterbacks in the NFL, Tyrod Taylor is pretty dependent on the quality of his pass-catchers. Here's a nearly three-year study I've conducted on how the Bills quarterback has fared when he had his top two targets on the field.
For a game to be counted, it needed to feature one of the following pass-catcher duos for Taylor:
2015-2016: Sammy Watkins and Robert Woods
2017: Jordan Matthews and Charles Clay, Jordan Matthews and Kelvin Benjamin, Charles Clay and Kelvin Benjamin
That yards-per-attempt average is only 6.67, a substandard figure.
However, those numbers equate to a relatively good 92.4 passer rating. The 32 touchdowns on 650 attempts equate to a 4.9 touchdown percentage. The 10 picks equate to a 1.5 interception rate.
For perspective on those percentages, Ben Roethlisberger currently has a 4.9 touchdown rate in 2017. Drew Brees' interception rate is 1.5 percent as he heads into Week 16.
Here's how Taylor's statistics look just for 2017 in the nine games that fit the criteria:
His YPA in those games is just 6.25 with a completion percentage of 60.4. His quarterback rating is 82.8.
Clay was included in the top pass-catching duo because he had a somewhat established reputation in the NFL as a viable receiver and without another option, he needed to be considered for the sake of this study entering into the 2017 season.
It's not crazy to suggest Buffalo went half the season without a true No. 1 receiver – or if Matthews was considered that, the team was missing a No. 2 – until Kelvin Benjamin was added.
The only game this season with Benjamin and Matthews – who'd together be categorized as No. 1 and No. 2 wideouts – was the Bills' loss to the Saints, which, ironically, was Taylor's worst game in his tenure in Buffalo.
Story topics: Tyrod Taylor