The Jets 9th overall pick hasn’t played well at all and hasn’t even been close to living up to that 9th overall draft selection last April. Not to mention the fans are already labeling him a “bust” and at this point, I’m sure even Milliner would probably call himself the same, but just how bad has Milliner been through his apparent major suck fest? Well, lets put some things in perspective a bit. Milliner has played four games (five really but only played in a worthwhile amount of snaps in four, he only started four games). It’s worth noting that I understand the frustrations with Milliner and that its very difficult to look at him and be encouraged at anything but the fact remains is that he is a rookie and that the CB position is a very difficult position to grasp when first entering the league because of the speed difference.
Below are a few notable CB’s first 4 games their rookie season and season totals:
Game 1: 7 receptions, 9 times thrown at, 110 yds, 1 TD, 0 INT
Game 2: 5 rec, 5 thrown at, 66 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Game 3: 1 rec, 2 thrown at, 6 yards, 0 TD, 1 INT
Game 4: 7 rec, 10 thrown at, 94 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Total: 67 receptions, 113 times thrown at, 59.3% completion %, 869 yards allowed, 13.0 yds per completion, 3 TD, 2 INT, 85.0 QB rating against
Notes: Pretty poor numbers for the entire year, didn’t seem to improve too much during the 2nd half the season
Game 1: 5 receptions, 11 times thrown at, 61 yds, 0 TD, 0 INT
Game 2: 7 rec, 8 thrown at, 100 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT
Game 3: 6 rec, 7 thrown at, 100 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Game 4: 2 rec, 5 thrown at, 17 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT
Game 5: 9 rec, 12 thrown at, 148 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Total: 57 receptions, 86 times thrown at, 66.3% completion %, 924 yards allowed, 16.2 yds per completion, 5 TD, 2 INT, 111.8 QB rating against
Notes: I added in his 5th game above. He struggled his first two seasons in the NFL, not just his rookie season. Not an elite CB, but certainly a pretty good one right now.
Game 1: 4 receptions, 7 times thrown at, 91 yds, 0 TD, 0 INT
Game 2: 6 rec, 9 thrown at, 125 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT
Game 3: 1 rec, 2 thrown at, 17 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT
Game 4: 7 rec, 10 thrown at, 88 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Total: 49 receptions, 77 times thrown at, 63.6% completion %, 893 yards allowed, 18.2 yds per completion, 7 TD, 4 INT, 112.1 QB rating against
Notes: I used the first four games that he started rather than played, since he played in his teams’ first six games but not a lot of snaps, he started from game seven on.
Game 1: 5 receptions, 5 times thrown at, 39 yds, 2 TD, 0 INT
Game 2: 2 rec, 4 thrown at, 94 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Game 3: 5 rec, 7 thrown at, 47 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Game 4: 2 rec, 6 thrown at, 17 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT
Total: 46 receptions, 79 times thrown at, 58.2% completion %, 585 yards allowed, 12.9 yds per completion, 7 TD, 4 INT, 90.4 QB rating against
(Notes: I used the first four games that he started rather than played, since he started off and on in the beginning with varying snap counts. Other than TD’s, his first four starts weren’t horrific, however his season totals are pretty poor in some areas as you can see from the total stats.)
Game 1: 4 receptions, 9 times thrown at, 65 yds, 1 TD, 0 INT
Game 2: 2 rec, 7 thrown at, 46 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Game 3: 6 rec, 12 thrown at, 52 yards, 0 TD, 0 INT
Game 4: 4 rec, 5 thrown at, 108 yards, 1 TD, 0 INT
Total (5 games): 16 receptions, 35 times thrown at, 45.7% completion %, 271 yards allowed, 16.9 yds per completion, 3 TD, 0 INT, 101.0 QB rating against
It’s worth noting that a lot of variables come into play with these other examples such as the pass rush and the play of the other CBs on the respective teams of the aforementioned CBs being compared to Milliner.
If there is ONE thing you can take from Milliner’s start, minus a huge turnaround right away, maybe, and that’s only a maybe, he’s never going to be an elite superstar CB. Although Peterson looks to be that good so who knows. The main point, is, CB’s can struggle ENORMOUSLY their rookie season and still turn into talented players. So for those determining he’s already a bust, FACTUALLY INCORRECT. He might end up being one, but we don’t know that yet. What I see with Milliner is a rookie that is struggling to keep up and everything is moving too fast for him as he as immediately named the starter after missing camp and preseason so he’s having to play catch up rather quickly but it seems he may need to be coached and taught to utilize his attributes and talents to help slow the game down a bit and thats something that will take time and commitment from him but its certainly something that is feasible.