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Silver Minings: Henry Ruggs’ target percentage needs to increase in 2021

Top draft pick didn’t get ball thrown his way enough

Indianapolis Colts v Las Vegas Raiders
Henry Ruggs
Photo by Chris Unger/Getty Images

In simple terms, the key to improvement for Las Vegas Raiders’ second-year wide receiver Henry Ruggs in 2021 is getting (and that means earning) more targets.

Josh Dubow of the Associated Press showed these stats, via Sportradar, of all of Ruggs’ different routes he ran as a rookie in 2020.

What was glaring was the lack of targets that Ruggs — the first receiver taken in the draft last year at No. 12 — got on these routes. As Dubow pointed out in the next tweet, Ruggs’ target percentage was extremely low ... almost alarmingly so.

Ruggs had just 26 catches as a rookie in a season where several rookies at the position made a large impact. While Ruggs has to improve in many areas, it starts with targets and that’s on him as much as anything. It wasn’t as if Raiders’ quarterback Derek Carr was ignoring Rugs all of last season.

Ruggs has to make most of his routes count (as Raiders’ coach Jon Gruden said last season) and get open on a more consistent basis. This route/target rate can’t be happen again.

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