Overreaction #3: Jerry Tillery has regressed back to the level he was at in the 2019 season
At the beginning of the 2020 season, when there was both uncertainty and hope about the season, one thing that seemed certain was that Jerry Tillery was beginning to progress into a player worthy of a first-round pick.
After the first two weeks, Tillery was all the way up to eight pressures to go along with his one sack, as he was routinely playing a part in what looked like a great defense.
Since then, the results have been far less promising.
In the middle of the season, Tillery struggled a bit more, particularly without Justin Jones in the lineup. While early-season suggested that Tillery could be an every-down player, his play without Jones suggested that he needed to have a rotational role rather than a full-time role.
Still, Tillery appeared to be a useful situational pass rusher. While this is not the ideal result for a first-round pick, a talented interior pass rusher can still be worth that late first-round choice.
Unfortunately, it looks like Tillery has regressed even more. In the past three weeks, Tillery has not recorded more than one pressure in a game, according to PFF.
Even worse, he has become an active asset for opposing teams due to a lack of discipline.
In previous weeks, it was roughing the passer penalties and unsportsmanlike conducts. Against the New England Patriots, he played a massive part in allowing the Patriots to score their third touchdown of the game by committing a blatant hands to the face penalty on a long third down.
Given his recent regression, is it fair to say that Tillery has regressed to his poor level of play in 2019?
Yes, but no.
Tillery’s play is at or below his 2019 level, but the reasoning is far different.
It is difficult to state how little of a factor Tillery was during the 2019 season. He rarely played, but when he did, he was a complete ghost on the field.
In 2020, he occasionally makes some pressures as a pass rusher, but he also makes a substantial impact for the other team through penalties. His play in 2020 is different from what it was in 2019, and he is showing more potential, but his impact is almost worse than it was in 2019.
Verdict #3: Not an overreaction