Ted Ginn is catching a lot of unwarranted flak for Indy's game. I just want to put not only his progress from 2008 into perspective, but also his role on the team.
Let's talk a little more about that increased O-Line play. Ronnie Brown is a superstar around here, yet he only had 150 more total yards from scrimmage than Ted Ginn last year--150 more yards than a 2nd year receiver who had yet to have his break out season. Yet, we all put a lot of blame the O-Line for Ronnie's lack of "elite" production last year, so why is Ginn not afforded the same respect? I couldn't begin tell you how many times last year that I heard opposing defenses were stacking the box due to a lack of respect for Pennington's ability to throw the deep ball, and thusly the R&R Express was being hampered by Pennington blah blah blah. Again, I ask you why not the same for Ted Ginn? Would not Pennington's lack of arm strength hamper a small speedster wide out more so than a bruiser running back? I think so.
Ginn is no longer the bottleneck when it comes to his lack of big plays, as we were able to witness on Ginn's 2nd "drop" in the end zone. Ginn had to come to a complete stop and *wait* on the ball. Teddy had nice separation on the CB, but all of that means nothing when Pennington cannot hit him in stride. He couldn't even block out the cornerback since the guy was between him and Pennington (behind him!), so I don't understand how you expect anybody to make that catch with a CB tangled in their jersey. It is much easier to break up a pass than it is to catch one with a CB all over you.
So,the real bottleneck is now the QB who can't get the small/fast receiver the ball in time. I bet a lot of the people who are bashing Ginn for his "fear" of getting hit were rooting for little Chris Williams or Anthony Armstrong to make the team. What role were you expecting them to fill? Did you think they were going to happily wait in the same spot for a CP10 rainbow pass and risk their entire career taking a hit that would in all likelihood cause a fumble/incomplete pass anyway?
Ok, you're right, Ginn should not be WR #1, but is that his fault? While we wait on a big, fast, physical receiver to develop (Hartline/Turner anyone?) to play opposite Ginn, he's the only receiver we have that can get down field. That's why he is being used as the #1 guy. Camarillo and Bess are much too slow to maintain any form of separation on a deep out.
Basically, Ginn is a very talented receiver who runs the 40 in under 4.3... too bad Pennington throws the 40 in 4.4 flat.