Worst players at every position from Week 13
Nick Foles and Michael Crabtree highlight Bryson Vesnaver's Worst Team of the Week roster.
Worst players at every position from Week 13
The season is quickly coming to a close, but don’t worry. Players are still struggling each and every week, and we’re here to bring them to light. Even though it’s been many, many games, some players still aren’t hitting their stride, and some are just having bad days. This list has both of those kinds of players; this is the PFF Worst Team of the Week.
(Editor’s note: Changes may be made following the completion of Monday Night Football, as well as upon the completion of our grades review process.)
Quarterback: Nick Foles, Rams (-4.7)
Foles struggled once again for the Rams, unable to get anything going in the passing game. He completed just 42.9 percent of his passes for only 146 yards and an interception. When he was faced with pressure, that completion percentage dropped to an unacceptable 26.7 percent, and just 2.1 yards per attempt. His deep ball was nonexistent, as he completed just 2-of-13 for 54 yards and a pick.
Running back: James Starks, Packers (-3.1)
Stark ran the ball nine times and gained just 15 yards—his longest run of the day was just 6 yards. He forced just one missed tackle and fumbled the ball twice.
Fullback: Ryan Hewitt, Bengals (-3.0)
Hewitt struggled with his blocking yesterday, being beaten twice for run stops on top of a few other disruptive plays in the run game. He also had a false start penalty.
Tight end: Jared Cook, Rams (-4.1)
Cook had a busy day in terms of being targeted, but not a very busy day in terms of actual production. Cook had the ball thrown his way nine times yesterday, but caught just three of them for 22 yards. He gained a mere 10 yards after the catch, and dropped two passes. He also fumbled and had a false start penalty.
Wide receivers: Michael Crabtree, Raiders (-2.6) and Malcolm Floyd, Chargers (-2.3)
Crabtree had a busy day, seeing 12 targets in the passing game. But he caught just five of them for 45 yards, and gained just 6 yards after catch. He did catch a touchdown, but also dropped two passes. Floyd was more invisible for the Chargers, catching just one of four passes thrown his way, for 15 yards. He also had a drop.
Tackles: Don Barclay, Packers (-8.8) and James Hurst, Ravens (-8.2)
Hello, old friends—welcome back. Barclay earned his grade mostly from an abysmal pass blocking performance, allowing two sacks, three hits, and five hurries. He was also beaten multiple times in the run game, and earned a negative grade there, too. Hurst was slightly better in the pass game, allowing only a sack, two hits, and four hurries. But his run block grade was the worst of the week, thanks to three run stops allowed, a holding penalty taken, and many other disruptive plays allowed.
Guards: Cameron Erving, Browns (-7.5) and Orlando Franklin, Chargers (-7.5)
Both of these guards made the list thanks to their poor pass blocking. For Erving, it was a sack, a hit, and five hurries that did him in, although he also finished well below-average in run blocking, too. Franklin didn’t allow a sack, but did allow two hits and six hurries. He also took two holding penalties.
Center: Russell Bodine, Bengals (-4.6)
Bodine allowed just one hit, but it was a rougher day for him in the run blocking category. He allowed multiple run stops and even more disruptive plays on his way to a -3.2 run block grade, the second-lowest of the week among centers.
Each week, we put forward a hybrid defense that features two edge rushers (4-3 defensive ends or 3-4 outside linebackers), three players on the “interior” of the defensive line (3-4 defensive ends or defensive tackles), and two linebackers (all inside linebackers and 4-3 outside linebackers).
Defensive interior – ends: Jaye Howard, Chiefs (-2.4) and Denico Autry, Raiders (-2.4)
Howard had just two hurries in the pass rush (and one hit, but it was a cleanup hit), and took a penalty that contributed to his low grade. He made just one solo stop on the day. Autry also had just two hurries rushing the passer, but he also missed one of only two tackle attempts all game. He didn’t have a single stop.
Defensive interior – tackle: Alan Branch, Patriots (-3.0)
For being a big run-stopping nose tackle, Branch sure didn’t play the part yesterday. He didn’t record a single tackle, and was pretty much blocked out of the play every rushing attempt he was on the field for. No defensive tackle had a lower run defense grade.
Edge rushers: Dee Ford, Chiefs (-5.2) and Ahmad Brooks, 49ers (-3.4)
Ford had a very low pass rush grade, despite finishing the day with a hit and five hurries. The hit was a cleanup, and three of the hurries were because of the offense holding the ball too long, rather than any good work done by Ford. He also missed a tackle in the run game and finished with zero stops. Brooks’ grade came mostly from the run game, where he didn’t record a single tackle, missing one on his only attempt. He also had just one hurry rushing the passer.
Linebackers: Paul Posluszny, Jaguars (-7.5) and Eric Kendricks, Vikings (-4.1)
Posluszny had a tough time in the run game yesterday, despite a misleading seven solo tackles. Only five of those constituted stops, and he also had four missed tackles. He was frequently blocked out of the play at the second level, and his -4.4 run defense grade was the worst among linebackers. Kendricks also struggled in the run game, missing more tackles (three) than he made stops (two). He also allowed a touchdown in coverage.
Cornerbacks: Brandon Browner, Saints (-4.9) and Greg Toler, Colts (-3.4)
No surprise seeing Browner here. He allowed 5-of-10 targets to be completed for 60 yards and two touchdowns. His grade was helped by three pass defenses, but he was also beaten on the other two incompletions, lucking out with a drop and an overthrow. He also took three penalties, which gives him a ridiculous 20 on the season. Toler also saw 10 targets and allowed six completions for 57 yards and two touchdowns. He had one pass defense, but two of the incompletions were dropped passes, so it could have looked even worse.
Safeties: Ed Reynolds, Eagles (-4.4) and John Cyprien, Jaguars (-4.2)
Reynolds had a tough time in the run game, finishing the game with zero stops and three missed tackles. He also struggled when in coverage, as the three throws he saw when he was the primary cover man were all completed for 55 yards and a touchdown. Cyprien also had a tough time in the same aspects, but at least managed to make two defensive stops and only miss two tackles. He also finished with the lowest coverage grade among safeties this week.
Kicker: Robbie Gould, Bears
Missing a 40-yard field goal is bad enough, but then also missing a 36-yard game winner? That gets you on this list.
Punter: Ryan Allen, Patriots
Allen had decent numbers, with an average punt of 50.5 yards and 4.65 seconds of hang-time. He had issues with location, often kicking to the middle of the field. Four of his six punts were returned.
Returner: Jacoby Jones, Steelers
Jones had one kick return, which he fumbled, and one punt return, which he muffed. He earned that spot on the bench for the second half.