We continue our Kansas City Chiefs roster evaluation series by taking a look at WR Dwayne Bowe.
Bowe has had a turbulent career to say the least since entering the league. He had a very good rookie season which he followed up with an improved second year despite playing for a horrible team with below average QB’s.
Bowe was primed for a breakout third year. The stars seemed to be aligning perfectly in 2009 as Herm Edwards and his conservative style of offense gave way to Todd Haley, the man who had helped develop Larry Fitzgerald.
Haley took a tough love approach with Bowe, immediately dropping the WR on the depth chart. Haley demanded Bowe get in shape, perfect his technique and drop his “Bowe Show” act. Haley was met with resistance and as Bowe tried to cut some coroners to make weight, he ended up getting himself suspended. He would go on to turn the worst season of his career in 2009 with only 47 receptions for 589 yards and 4 touchdowns.
By 2010, however, Haley’s methods were starting to pay off. Bowe had bought in and attended offseason workouts with Larry Fitzgerald. Haley also encouraged Bowe to enter under the mentorship of Chris Carter.
The results were astounding as Bowe blossomed in 2010. He had a career high yards (1162) and touchdowns (15). In fact, Bowe’s 15 touchdowns lead the NFL. He also averaged a healthy 16.1 yards per reception.
That all sounds great but there were games when opposing QB’s shutdown Bowe and made him a non-factor. The next logical step in Bowe’s maturation will be to be able to be a factor even against the best defenses.
Let’s take a closer look at Dwayne’s season with Pro Football Focus.
(rankings among NFL receivers who played at least 25% of their team’s snaps in parentheses)
Yards After Catch: 380 (9th)
Yards: 1162 (9th)
Yards Per Reception: 16.1 (T 16th)
Long: 72 yards (14th)
TD’s: 15 (1st)
INT’s: 3 (balls intended for Bowe that were picked)
Drops: 8 (13th)#1 was Wes Welker, Pierre Garcon, Brandon Marshall and Steve Johnson with 13.
Screen Blocking: +1.0
Overall: +4.4 (w/playoffs) +5.2 (w.out playoffs) (23rd)
Bowe is obviously an ascending starter.
What we saw this year from Bowe was a more serious receiver concentrating on his craft. There were not too many distractions (after his espn the magazine fiasco). Bowe mostly just showed up and did his job as best he could. The results can’t be argued with and the most exciting thing about Bowe’s 2010 season is that he still has plenty of room left to grow.
If Dwayne can have another solid offseason he could really explode in 2011, especially if the Chiefs add some other legit receiving threats other than Tony Moeaki.
Bowe struggled when going up against tougher defenses and there were times when teams were able to take him out of the game. The playoff game in Baltimore was a perfect example of this. When Bowe was unable to be effective, the Chiefs’ offense struggled. It is crucial the Bowe continue to work hard this offseason to continue to develop. That being said, it is equally important that the Chiefs surround Bowe with other receivers who can make team’s pay for ganging up on him.
Bowe has all the physical tools to be one of the league’s elite receivers. You could argue he already started to enter that category in 2010 but to be truly labeled “unstoppable” Bowe still has a little ways to go. Should he continue to work, 2011 could be another landmark season for Bowe.
What do you think Addicts? Has Bowe peaked or can he still improve?
Chiefs Roster Evaluation: