AJ catching with his body

Discussion in 'Texans Talk' started by The.Houston.Titans, Dec 1, 2004.

  1. The.Houston.Titans

    The.Houston.Titans Rookie

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    Maybe it's just me, but it seems that AJ has a tendency to catch the ball with his body (I see quite a few other WRs in the NFL that do so as well).

    Frankly I don't care how he catches the ball- so long as he comes up with it, but I always thought WRs were coached to catch the ball with their hands. I did see in the Packers' game one pass that bounced off AJ's chest because he was trying to catch it with his body.

    Are NFL WRs coached differently from high school and college players? I remember coaches getting on to me when I catch with my body, even if I come up with the ball. It's one of the first things you're taught as a WR at my high school. Well body or hands it doesn't matter, Andre still rules so that's all that counts.
     
  2. HJam72

    HJam72 Hall of Fame

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    In the Titans game, AJ jumped TWICE to catch touchdown passes in his gut, instead of just reaching up to catch them in his hands. I don't really blame him for that for several reasons. Being in the endzone makes a difference, because he could cradle the ball and not worry about running, and catching one in the gut is always easier than with your hands, if you're just going to cradle it and fall right there. They just don't want you to make a habit of it because the next thing you know you're catching them higher and having them bounce off your chest, like the time you just mentioned. If he had not been in the endzone, he could drop the ball trying to get it up to a running position after the catch. More likely, he could also get NAILED while coming down with it. This scenario always reminds me of Ernest Givens going over the middle, jumping and catching one in the gut, and then getting his head knocked off on the way down, although that wasn't all just about him catching it that way.

    That's one reason I think receivers should ALWAYS, ALWAYS practice with shoulder pads on. Even if everyone else is practicing without pads, I think the receivers should have to wear the shoulder pads, because that way they will see their mistake immediately if they ever catch one in the chest (or don't catch it, I should say). It's also harder to get your hands up when you're wearing pads, so it's not something you can just mentally tell yourself you'll switch to when it's time.


    On those rare occasions, when you just want to suck the ball in and envelope it, not looking for any more yardage and you know what you're doing, OK take it in the gut and hug it to death.

    In answer to your question, I don't know if they actually go so far as coaching him to use his hands or if they will actually tell him he's beein doing it wrong some lately, but I'm certain that he knows full well that he should be using his hands and any receiver that lets a ball bounce off of his chest knows he just made a fundamental mistake. They probably know that he doesn't need to be told. He just needs to concentrate on that one thing a little more.
     
  3. infantrycak

    infantrycak Mod. Staff Member

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    AJ worked very hard on his hands in the off-season and it was obvious from training camp on that he has been concentrating on using his hands. Remember some times WR's will catch balls less than ideally because of the throw or because they are trying to position out a DB from the ball. Overall he has (knock on wood) made great strides this year:

    2003 119 targets, 10 drops--8.4%
    2004 106 targets, 4 drops--3.7%

    For a comparison to some other WR's:
    Isaac Bruce--108/4--3.7%
    Donald Driver--92/7--7.6%
    Marvin Harrison--102/4--3.9%
    Torry Holt--87/2--2.3%
    Terrell Owens--100/5--5%
    Jimmy Smith--97/6--6.2%
    Hines Ward--76/2--2.6%
    Joe Horn--103/5--4.8%
     
  4. SBTexans08

    SBTexans08 All Pro

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    I thought I had read an article earlier during the pre-season that A.J. was practicing his catches. On that article it mentioned that he wanted to master, error free, catching throws with his hands mostly. I've heard several analyst say that it is paramount for a receiver to have hand catching down as best as possible. Since there are LBs, safeties, and corners to arc over and through, hand catching is a must in the NFL.
     
  5. Double Barrel

    Double Barrel Modified Simian

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    With AJ's talent, I have no doubt that he will master the hands-only catching. It would put/keep him the elite corps of NFL receivers. Most of the spectacular receptions of all-time are those passes that seem impossible to catch, but the WR brings it in with his fingertips or jumps to catch a ball 10 ft. in the air and brings it down with his hands.
     
  6. RTP2110

    RTP2110 Thank You Andre

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    Let's also remember how hard it is to make catches with your hands when Carr is throwing 100 mph fastballs at you. Most other QB's it wouldn't be quite as difficult.
     
  7. El Tejano

    El Tejano Hall of Fame

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    Speaking of catching with your hands. JJ Moses does an awesome job of catching kicks that way.
     
  8. Reddevil63

    Reddevil63 Hall of Fame

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    He makes me really nervous when he does that in traffic :shocked
     


  9. Youngstown Colt

    Youngstown Colt All Pro

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    i remember at miami, andre was really a track guy playing football, and had average hands at best. andre has impressed me so much with the strides hes made as a reciever. usually, when a guy doesnt have it, he doesnt have it. but andre has turned himself into quite a reciever now.

    as for him catching it with his body, thats probably just a side effect of really just learning to catch. as the years go by, youll start seeing him use his hands more, right now hes just using his body as a safety blanket
     
  10. TexansTrueFan

    TexansTrueFan Hall of Fame

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    yeah true youndstown, him beign a young player he is problably catching with his body to try to minimize mistakes, but regardless the boy can still make things happen once he gets the ball ! I dont care if he catches the ball with his face mask as long as he gets it !
     
  11. ledzeppelin229

    ledzeppelin229 Hall of Fame

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    90% of the time now when I see AJ making a catch, he's using his hands. Sometimes I think it's hard to tell if he's using his hands or not because his arms aren't extended, but I think he's made great strides with catching the ball. Really, all our receivers have pretty good hands except for Bradford, and his mainly look bad because everyone elses are so good.
     
  12. TEXANS84

    TEXANS84 Moderator Staff Member

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    Good god...he caught a fair catch with his hands above his head against the Titans. Scared the **** outta me.
     
  13. LiveForTheGame

    LiveForTheGame Veteran

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    It depends on the type of pass you have. Generally, WR's should catch everything with their hands...easier to control and get the ball a little bit faster. Most deep balls should be caught with the hands. Curl and hitch routes should be caught with the hands. Anything with the ball being thrown infront except for slant type routes because arm/body catches can be cradled easier. Sometimes it's the only way you'll hold on to the ball. Most passes should be caught with the hands. However, as long as it's caught is all that matters when it comes down to it.
     
  14. HJam72

    HJam72 Hall of Fame

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    I really don't think it's going to be a problem with him. In fact, he's doing fine with that (and he'll probably get even better) and excellent with everything else.
     
  15. infantrycak

    infantrycak Mod. Staff Member

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    You will see one other returner that prominently catches in the same fashion--Dante Hall. Frankly that looks to be a much more secure way to catch IMO--especially seeing so many returners muff balls letting them hit their forearms, belly, chest, ground and other team.
     
  16. GeauxTexans

    GeauxTexans Rookie

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    Great (and very interesting) stats. :hmmm:
     
  17. Youngstown Colt

    Youngstown Colt All Pro

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    antwaan randle el does this as well, it is discouraged by most coaches because many times you cant contain the spin of the ball with your hands alone, thats why punt returners are taught to let your pads stop the spin, and your hands catch the ball
     

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