Well I emerged from my post RGIII funk and am a little more positive about the Browns. After screaming "WE CAN’T EVEN SUCK RIGHT" – I am now at an even keel. After looking over all of our options – I firmly believe that Rufio had it right we must stay at number 4 and tab Blackmon.
First of all, let’s talk about what Justin Blackmon is not. He is not even close in physical freakishness to the Megatron. He is less freaky than Larry Fitz and A.J. Green – both top 5 selections. He is not 6-3, cannot jump out of the Hoosier Dome. But before we deem him "not worthy" lets delve deeper.
Many of the best WRs really did not have the freakishness of Justin Blackmon. In fact, let’s look at HOF WRs. There are 15 pure HOF WRs in the Super Bowl Era. Let's break them down into 2 categories. Freaks, and guys with something else. The freaks have characteristics that are so obvious, so measureable, and so impressive, that they remind us why the ancient Greeks actually thought these freaks were gods. These overt gifts include running super fast, jumping like a kangaroo, or incredible wing span. The something else are things more subtle - ambidextrous coordination, super hand eye coord, a work ethic to drive muscle memory, and a brain that processes info at a faster rate than mortals.
The physical freaks in HOF: (1) Bob Hayes
Arguable physical freaks (1) James Lofton, maybe a couple others
Definitely not physical freaks (13) Lance Alworth, Ray Berry, Fred Bilitnekof, Michael Irvin, Charlie Joiner, Largent, Don Maynard, Tommy McDonald, Art Monk, Rice, John Stallworth, Lynn Swann, and Paul Warfield. All very blessed with talent, most would not qualify as a burner during their era.
Obviously there are flaws with the analysis. Whole lot more regular guys than freaks, and earlier eras didn't crunch numbers. Still, there is an IT factor that is subtle, I don’t know what IT is – But I know Justin Blackmon has IT. Here's why:
The accolades are ridonkulous. 1st ever WR Big 12 Offensive POY, joined Michael Crabtree (more on him later) as only 2 time winners of Biletnikoff award, 2 Time Unanimous All-American. But I am more impressed with:
1. Blackmon holds the NCAA records for most consecutive games gaining 100 Yards or More and most games gaining 200 Yards or more.
2. In 2010 and 2011 Blackmon caught 223 for 3,200 yeards and 36 TDs. Let that sink in, then factor in the defenses designed to stop him, and that OSU does not run one of these Texas Tech, Houston, Hawaii junk offenses that inflates WR numbers.
3. Blackmon is arguably the best WR in NCAA history. Anyone with a better number played for a weathervane University (Fred Barnes), or a junk offense (Troy Edwards). In the college venue he was more unstoppable with Brad Weeden than A.J. Green was with Stafford.
4. I am witness. Better than Crabtree – by a mile. Plus the guy is a competitive, green sticker guy not the C word. He is the 2nd best prospect Big XII player I have seen behind Suh. Against Texas, the secondary featured a 2011 NFL Pro Bowler (Thomas), 2011 2nd rounder(Williams), 2011 3rd rounder(Cu. Brown), a 2011 4th rounder (Ch Brown), a 2013 projected 1st rounder (Vacarro). Most were as fast or faster, some were bigger, none could even slow him down. He shredded double teams, made zones look ridiculous and just laughed at man to man coverage.
5. It takes a great player to put tOSU on the national BCS stage. But guys like RGIII and Blackmon took secondary programs to national prominence – double hard. Against a fine Stanford team in OSU's 1st ever BCS game - with Stanford scheming to stop him - Blackmon led the Pokes to the victory with 8 rec, 186 yards, and 3 TDs, game MVP. Case closed.