Harrison, Smith sure-handed

While it seems like the top receivers in the NFL catch every pass thrown their way, it's actually far from true, writes KC Joyner.

Originally Published: June 1, 2006
By KC Joyner | ESPN Insider
One of the things I most enjoy in researching football scientifically is debunking traditional football wisdom. How many times have you seen a sure-handed receiver drop a pass, only to have the announcer say something like, "That almost never happens. He'll catch that pass 99 times out of 100."

I always wondered if that was true. Do the best receivers catch 99 percent of the passes thrown their way?

As a result, I tracked the number of drops every qualifying receiver had during the 2005 season (minimum of 40 catches to qualify). I also divided the number of drops by the number of catchable passes to come up with a dropped pass percentage.