Underrated or Overrated?


In Matt Miller’s recent piece over on Bleacher Report, he had a very interesting choice for the most overrated and underrated players on the Jaguars’ roster – Tyson Alualu and Chad Henne, respectively.

This guy might not even be on the roster when the season starts. USA Today Sports

This guy might not even be on the roster when the season starts.

I’ll admit that out of context I thought he was insane. If anything Chad Henne is overrated. Analysts keep expecting him to start at quarterback for the Jaguars despite being outplayed by Blaine Gabbert in practices. Coaches aren’t simple, they are at practice every day. If they think Henne gave the Jaguars a better chance to win he would start.

Tyson Alualu being overrated is another curiosity. Alualu is barely “rated” at all. He rarely gets mentioned and he does what you would expect a  middle of the road defensive tackle (now defensive end) to do. As a top 10 draft pick he should be more of an impact player, but that doesn’t affect his current perception as a good, not great player.

Fortunately Miller provides a reasonable explanation.

"“As a former top-10 draft pick, Tyson Alualu was supposed to be better than he is, which is a mid-level defensive tackle with nice potential, but a lot of untapped assets so far. Is he overrated nationally? Not a chance, but is he a player that too many are holding out high hopes for based on his draft position? Absolutely.”– Matt Miller"

The Jaguars don’t really have a multitude of options for this particular category. So few Jaguar players make national headlines, it’s difficult to even compile a list of candidates. You could make a case for Maurice Jones-Drew, but we have to wait and see how he returns from injury.

His explanation for Henne being underrated is noticeably more leaky.

"“Chad Henne is not a high-level NFL starter, but he did show late in 2012 that he’s the team’s best option moving into 2013. Henne, not former first-rounder Blaine Gabbert, would be my pick to handle the team’s starting quarterback job after the way the former Michigan quarterback handled the last seven games of the 2012 season.”-Matt Miller"

He’s right – Chad Henne is not a high-level NFL starter. Frankly he’s not really a starting quarterback. What he showed during his one-hit-wonder game in Houston last season is what his ceiling is: a solid backup who can be plugged in for a game or two in a pinch. And using Henne’s 7 game stretch to end 2012 is not a solid argument. Discounting his freak performance in Houston (a game he ended poorly), he ended the season on a stretch of a 6/10 TD-to-INT ratio and a yards/attempt average below 6. He could barely muster a completion percentage over 50. The Jaguars have A LOT of options for underrated players. Marcedes Lewis, Cecil Shorts III, and Eugene Monroe are all significantly better players who get no attention or are unfairly criticized. I’ll let Matt slide with his choice for Alualu as overrated, but no Jaguar fan will advocate his argument for Henne.

– Daniel Lago

Yell at me on Twitter @dlago89