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Ladd McConkey

The hype is real. With McConkey a Bolt is it justified?

It's easy to look at an offense where not one, but both of the top receivers have moved on to greener pastures ('Gang Green'-er in Mike Williams' case) and assume that the incoming almost-first round pick is going to have all the work he could want. But I think that forecast could use a splash of cold water.

When you have a brand-new coaching staff with an unknown MO like we do in Tennessee, New England and Seattle then it's reasonable to hazard guesses on personnel usage. And while the Chargers have a new head coach and offensive coordinator, they are hardly fresh faces: Jim Harbaugh and Greg Roman are known entities that are there to win football games immediately, and they are very likely going to do that with a strong running game and a lower volume passing attack - one that is anchored by veterans.

TOP WRs WITH <2 YEARS NFL EXPERIENCE ON GREG ROMAN OFFENSES
YearTeamPlayerTotal YardsPass Attempts Rank
201149ersKyle Williams27331st
201249ersN/AN/A31st
201349ersQuinton Patton (R)6032nd
201449ersBruce Ellington (R)9029th
2015BillsSammy Watkins (R)104831st
2019RavensMarquise Brown (R)58432nd
2020RavensMarquise Brown77032nd
2021RavensRashod Bateman (R)5159th
2022RavensRashod Bateman (R)28528th

There are a couple encouraging seasons here: Sammy Watkins had his best season during Roman's 18-game Buffalo pit stop (he was let go after the Bills started 0-2 in 2016), and Marquise "Hollywood" Brown had a solid sophomore season for him in Baltimore. Like these two, McConkey has strong draft capital tied to him so he should be fairly involved in this passing game.

But neither of those examples came with Jim Harbaugh as the head coach. Between Harbaugh and Roman's deep devotion to the run, Harbaugh's tendency for veteran deference and McConkey's college production profile suggesting he may be more suited to being a complementary piece than a true 'alpha' receiver at least initially, I'm pumping the brakes on the McConkey hype train.

—Luke Wilson

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