Preseason Player Analysis
What You Need to Know:
- Chark is coming off a disappointing 2020 campaign, missing 3 games with back, chest, rib and shin injuries and posting a 53-706-5 line in the other 13.
- He finished 43rd among WRs in PPR points per game; 48th in non-PPR.
- Chark topped 11 PPR points in 5 of his first 7 games but hit that mark in only 1 of his final 6.
- QB play was a major problem in Jacksonville, with Gardner Minshew, Mike Glennon and Jake Luton combining to rank 21st in passing yards, 19th in TDs, 28th in completion rate and 28th in yards per attempt.
- Chark’s game also took a step back, at least according to Pro Football Focus. His PFF receiving grade dropped from 75.8 in 2019 to 71.2 last year. The latter mark ranked 51st among 84 qualifying WRs. Teammate Laviska Shenault earned a better grade (71.8).
- Shenault (1.55) and Chris Conley (1.54) beat Chark in yards per route run (1.48). Chark ranked 59th among those 84 WRs in that metric.
- Chark was much better in 2019, his 2nd NFL season …
- He tallied a 73-1,008-8 line to finish 18th among WRs in PPR points and 16th in non-PPR.
- He ranked 25th in PFF receiving grade and 37th in yards per route run among 79 qualifiers.
- Chark gets a big QB upgrade this season in #1 overall pick Trevor Lawrence, who turned in 3 impressive seasons at Clemson.
- Lawrence was excellent throwing deep last year, earning an elite 97.7 PFF grade on deep passes. That meshes well with Chark, who was 1 of 9 WRs to earn a 99.9 PFF grade on deep targets back in 2019. Even in his disappointing 2020 campaign, he registered a strong 96.5 PFF grade on deep targets.
- Chark will face tougher target competition this year with Shenault entering his 2nd season and WR Marvin Jones arriving in free agency. The Jaguars also added 1st-round rookie RB Travis Etienne, who figures to play a big role in the passing game.
- Chark will be working under a remade coaching staff, featuring HC Urban Meyer and OC Darrell Bevell.
- This will be Meyer’s 1st NFL stint after over 30 years in the college ranks. He most recently served as Ohio State's HC from 2012-2018, leading the Buckeyes to an 83-9 record and 1 national championship. He also won 2 titles among 6 seasons as Florida's HC and spent 2 years before that as HC at Utah.
- Meyer is an offensive-minded coach. He deployed a spread offense for much of his time in college and prioritizes speed.
- Bevell has 14 seasons of experience as an NFL OC. He spent the past 2 years in Detroit, where the Lions ranked near the middle of the pack in total yards and points. Bevell's units were better during his Seattle tenure from 2011 to 2017, with 5 of those 7 squads finishing top 11 in points. His offenses have generally leaned toward the run, with 10 of the 14 ranking among the top half of the league in rush attempts. Only 4 of them have finished top-16 in pass attempts.
- Meyer said at his introductory press conference that Bevell will call plays but “adapt” to Meyer’s vision.
Draft Sharks Bottom Line:
Chark busted last year, missing 3 games and finishing outside the top 40 WRs in PPR and non-PPR points per game. His game took a step back, but shoddy QB play was mostly to blame.
That shouldn’t be a problem in 2021 with the arrival of 1st-round pick Trevor Lawrence. And Lawrence’s deep-ball prowess meshes well with Chark’s downfield ability.
He probably won’t be a target hog alongside Laviska Shenault, Marvin Jones and Travis Etienne. But Chark’s efficiency should get a boost this year. Consider him a WR3 with upside.