clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

PFF names Colts' selection of T.J. Green one of worst draft picks in 2016

New, comments

Pro Football Focus recently released a list of the 16 worst draft picks in 2016 and the Colts' selection of safety T.J. Green in the second round was listed at number 12.

If you buy something from an SB Nation link, Vox Media may earn a commission. See our ethics statement.

Andy Lyons/Getty Images

In the second round of the 2016 NFL Draft, the Indianapolis Colts selected Clemson safety T.J. Green with the 57th overall pick.  Almost immediately, mixed reactions started pouring in.

There were some people who thought it was a bad pick as the Colts reached for a developmental player, while there were some people who thought it was a good pick to add a talented safety to the mix.  Some of the national "analysts" were divided on the issue as well.  On the one side was Pro Football Focus, who really didn't like the pick, while on the other side was several respected analysts, who thought that Green was good value.

It really depends on whose opinion you trust, then, but if you trust PFF, it was one of the worst picks in the entire draft.  Pro Football Focus recently narrowed down the 253 overall draft choices to the 16 worst ones, and the Colts' second round selection of Green came in at number 12.

Some evaluators see Green as a cornerback, but we're not sure his coverage skills are even good enough for safety in the NFL. Green didn't just grade negatively, he had the seventh-lowest coverage grade in the FBS last year. He gave up 25 catches and 479 yards on 39 targets and didn't get his hand on a single pass all season. If there is a silver lining, it's that Green had the 28th-highest grade nationally against the run.

PFF's biggest complaint with Green is his coverage, as they noted that he played well against the run last year.  After the draft, however, Colts head coach Chuck Pagano seemed to speak quite highly of Green's ability in coverage.  "He runs a 4.34, he's going to be able to match up," Pagano said.  "He played in the slot and he has covered guys in the slot.  They talk about having the skill set to play corner, so he can go out and match up with longer, rangier guys -€” the big, athletic mismatch tight ends that we are seeing week in and week out.  To get a guy with this guy's skill set and cover ability, it handles those problems because you go week in and week out and you are saying, ‘Okay, who's going to take care of Gronk [Rob Gronkowski] this week and who's going to take care of this guy and the guys in our division?'  This guy gives you a ton of position flexibility, not only playing first and second down stopping the run and cover tight ends and all that, but third down and then match up the way that he can match up, that's a bonus."

Of course, Chuck Pagano doesn't really speak negatively about players in public often (especially not after just drafting him), and we know that this pick was one that Pagano was particularly excited about and involved in - so of course he's not going to talk negatively about Green, though it still is interesting to note that his comments stand in stark contrast to PFF's analysis.  So who is right?  As always, the truth probably lies somewhere in the middle.  I don't think anyone - even the Colts - would argue that Green is more of a developmental player, as Ryan Grigson and Chuck Pagano talked a lot about the traits and skills that Green has.  A player who switched from wide receiver to safety just a few years ago, Green still has room to grow as a safety, so it's entirely possible to think that the Colts took a chance on a guy who wasn't as great in college because they see the potential player he could develop into.

Again, your opinion of the Colts' pick of T.J. Green is likely based on who you choose to believe, and the truth is likely somewhere in between.  PFF, however, thinks it was one of the worst picks in the entire draft.