The 26th overall selection in the 2011 draft, Jon Baldwin had his NFL debut delayed due to breaking his thumb during a locker room altercation. He was active for the first time in Week 7, but made his first real impact in Week 8:
- Week 7 – 1 reception for 14 yards and 0 TD (5 targets)
- Week 8 – 5 receptions for 82 yards and 1 TD (8 targets)
In Monday night’s game he was the second most targeted receiver (Dwayne Bowe led the way with 11 targets). It is interesting that Steve Breaston was targeted just four times.
Randy Covitz of The Kansas City Star (click here for the article) has a quote from head coach Todd Haley:
“I was encouraged with his progression the last couple of weeks,” coach Todd Haley said of Baldwin. “I think everyone is excited about him.”
The Professor’s Thoughts:
There was a lot of talk about the potential of Baldwin prior to the season and the chances of him being a big-time downfield threat. He put that on display with his 39-yard touchdown catch this past weekend.
For now it appears that he will remain the third receiver, playing primarily in the slot, but it seems like only a matter of time before Baldwin starts seeing more and more time. While Breaston looked good as the team’s second receiver in Baldwin’s absence, the targets he received in Week 8 could become telling.
Baldwin’s upside is too great to ignore, especially for an offense that is averaging 18.3 points per game (eighth worst in the league). I would expect him to become more integrated into the offense, meaning he should get even more opportunities to produce. Consider him a must own option in all but the shallowest of formats moving forward.