I was discussing the benefits of keeping Braylon Edwards on the New York Jets roster with a friend, and he mentioned that Edwards was a good red zone threat. I thought to myself, "Well, you can't quantify an ability to divert attention, but you can quantify how effective he is in the red zone at converting targets to touchdowns." So, I decided to look at Edwards' effectiveness in the end zone. Here is what I found:
|Year||RZ Targets||RZ TDs||Conv. %|
I was unable to find any statistics on the number of times Edwards was targeted in the red zone in 2005 or 2006, but for the purposes of this, it's not a problem. The number of targets is listed here, and the number of red zone touchdowns is listed here. I should note that this is for the regular season only, as the averages I will compare the above numbers to are also for the regular season only.
According to ProFootballFocus, between 2008 and 2010, the average for all players with 40+ total receptions in converting red zone targets to touchdowns was 12.1%. In that same time period, Edwards averaged 12.3%. Between 2007 and 2012, Edwards averaged 13.6%. Finally, as PFF notes, Edwards was among the lowest in the league in 2008.
So, my title was a bit misleading. During Edwards' prime, he was marginally above average in the red zone. At the tail end of it, should we really expect it to go up?