Njoku a victim of recency bias
The 2018 season was a whirlwind of a year for the Browns and for Njoku, but he proved to be one of the most valuable tight ends in the league from Week 6 of that season on. Njoku had only tallied one drop in the back half of the 2018 season, a year in which Njoku put himself in elite company with his stat line of 639 yards and four touchdowns on 56 catches for the Browns.
Looking at Njoku’s drop rate in 2018, a rate that tallied out to 6.8 percent of his targets, it has been completely overblown. This drop rate is along the career line of that of Kansas City Chiefs’ Pro Bowl and All-Pro tight end Travis Kelce, but nobody complains about his drops.
Taking a closer look at that 6.8 percent drop rate in 2018, a year where the hate on Njoku seems to come from, it is actually a lower number than that of his teammate Jarvis Landry‘s from that year. When looking back upon the 2018 season, can anyone recall Landry catching any flack for dropping passes, even though he was doing it at a higher rate than Njoku?
So if Landry does not catch the heat, then why does Njoku? In fact, looking at the first two years of his career, he is in elite company with Hall of Famers and future Hall of Famers.