Oct 20, 2013; Atlanta, GA, USA; Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Harry Douglas (83) runs with the ball after a catch against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers during the first half at the Georgia Dome. The Falcons defeated the Buccaneers 31-23. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports
Harry Douglas has been Atlanta’s slot threat since Matt Ryan’s arrival in 2008. To some, he is a clutch no-namer who always plays hard, and to others he is an expendable klutz. I have personally believed HD could at least be a 2nd option on most other teams for quite a few years now, but last Sunday he proved he could be a little bit more than that. With Roddy White injured, and Julio out for the season, Douglas stepped up against the “No Fly Zone”, bringing in 7 receptions for 149 yards and a touchdown. Those stats alone are eerily similar to those of Julio Jones or Roddy White on an extremely productive day, so is Harry’s performance what we should expect from him as a No.1 target, or was it all just a fluke?
Well, since 2008 (excluding his injury plagued 2009 year) Harry has averaged 30.5 receptions/367.75 yards per season. If you take into consideration that Atlanta was a power run team from 08′ to 11′ (not to mention the pickup of Tony Gonzalez in 09′), the rock was handed to Michel Turner frequently, which in turn took away possible targets from Harry. So with literally no rushing attack last week, HD was able to show his abilities as well… the only weapon on the team. In doing so, he proved to be surprisingly explosive.
With Roddy coming back in a few weeks, and Julio returning next season, Harry will eventually be pushed back into being a non-factor on the Falcons offense. With this almost a certainty, we can look at what we could possibly do with Harry Douglas’ talents. No, I’m not saying we should trade him off before the deadline… I mean, the dude is THE OFFENSE right now. I’m saying with the offensive and defensive trenches in complete dismal, the Atlanta coaching staff may look in to sending Harry elsewhere for a pretty pick in the draft. Without an offensive line, good receivers are worthless; so shopping around our slot receiver could prove to be pretty enticing.
What do you think? Should we trade Harry Douglas at the conclusion of the season, or keep him with the possibility of our lines improving? Either way, HD has proven many people wrong.