Brandon Marshall is a very self-aware individual. He is fascinating in that regard.
He isn't a perfect person. He knows he isn't a perfect person. He knows that applies both on or off the field. Right now I want to share with you his view of his situation on the field.
Marshall leads the Dolphins with 13 catches for 218 yards. That's very good, but it could be better and Marshall knows it because as the chart below shows, the Dolphins are looking for him a ton so far this year. That's why Marshall is tied for the league lead in targets -- meaning, the number of passes thrown his way.
Top 10 Targets 2011
1t) Miles Austin – Dallas Cowboys – 24
1t) Steve Smith – Carolina Panthers – 24
1t) Brandon Marshall – Miami Dolphins – 24
4t) Jason Witten – Dallas Cowboys – 23
4t) Kenny Britt – Tennessee Titans – 23
4t) Wes Welker – New England Patriots – 23
7) Mike Thomas – Jacksonville Jaguars -21
8t) Matt Forte – Chicago Bears – 20
8t) Steve Johnson – Buffalo Bills – 20
8t) Andre Johnson – Houston Texans – 20
8t) Mike Wallace -- Pittsburgh Steelers - 20.
The fact Marshall is tied for most targets is great news because it shows progress over last year when he was sometimes lost in the offense. But getting so many targets while being tied only for 18th with 13 catches is not good news for the Miami receiver.
He knows the wider the gulf between targets and actual catches means something wrong is going on between the time the ball leaves the quarterback and arrives where he is.
"Last year was the first year that I wasn’t the most targeted receiver," Marshall said this week. "It’s always been that way and the thing being the most targeted receiver is good, but you want that ratio of completion percentage to go up so you’re targeted 180 something times a year, which I’ve been since I’ve been in the league means nothing if you’re only catching 50 percent of those balls.
"So we want to see that ratio change a little bit and be more efficient and effective when the ball comes my way whether it’s me catching the ball or throws, me being put in better situations."
So what is the ideal target ratio in Marshall's opinion?
“I’m not sure right now," he said. "I would like to be up in the 80s if possible, but I don’t know. That’s a stat that I have kept my eye on in the past and never liked where it was so I would like to see it go up a little bit.”
Don't misunderstand. Marshall is fine with the amount of targets right now. He merely wants to increase the number of catches. He definitely is not complaining.
“Wow, that would say a lot about me if I were complaining about the targets I’m getting right now, but I wish the ball would come my way every time," Marshall said. "But then that ratio would probably drop a little bit. We have guys like (Anthony) Fasano, we got (Davone) Bess, (Brian) Hartline, that we can get the ball to and win."
Yesterday, I shared with you Brian Daboll passionately discussing the need to improve the Miami red zone offense. Today, I want to share with you his views of getting both Reggie Bush and Daniel Thomas in the game at the same time.
And, you'll notice, he neither confirms nor denies the possibility the Dolphins might eventually run a Wildcat type formation once in a while.
One more thing: Yes, I sit in the front row whenever I can so I can share these videos with you. And Daboll notices. As you'll see.