Overton’s Top 5 NFL Wide Receivers

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Packers at Redskins Wildcard Game 01/10/16 (Image via WikiMedia Commons)

By Sean Overton, Sports Writer

 

NFL fans across the globe have wondered how the COVID-19 pandemic would impact the league and its players. Many more restrictions and regulations have been put in place to keep players and staff safe, but these wide receivers have showed that it hasn’t slowed them down one bit.

 

Honorable Mention: Tyreek Hill

Tyreek Hill is the leading wide receiver on the reigning Super Bowl champion Kansas City Chiefs. Hill has been putting up incredible numbers, including 9 touchdowns in 9 games played.

The only reason he failed to break the top 5 was his disappointing yards per game and receptions. Hill has averaged an amazing 14.8 yards per reception but only has a disappointing 44 receptions on 72 targets. This statistic drops his yards per game to a mere 72.2 with 650 overall yards. Hill has been an above-average player in the league this year, but it simply wasn’t enough to break through to the top 5.

 

5- Terry McLaurin

While the Washington Football Team currently sits third in the NFC East with a disappointing record of 2-7, second-year wide receiver Terry McLaurin has exceeded expectations.

McLaurin has caught 57 of 86 targets — which translates to a 66% catching success rate. He has 787 receiving yards — overall fourth in the NFL — with a YPR of 13.8. He has an amazing 398 yards after the catch, which is the second-highest in the league. McLaurin is Washington’s leading receiver, averaging 87.4 yards per game. McLaurin only has 3 touchdowns, but his yards and YAC were enough for him to crack my top 5.

 

4- Stefon Diggs

The Buffalo Bills are currently in first place in the AFC East with a record of 7-3, and a large part of that placement is due to Stefon Diggs. Diggs is currently on pace for a career year, leading the Bills in yards, touchdowns and yards per game.

Diggs leads the league in receiving yards with 906, with 73 receptions on 101 targets — which translates to a 72% catch rate. He is fifth in the league in yards per game with 90.6 but he also leads the league in targets.

The reason Diggs isn’t higher on this list is because he has had the most targets in the league. You would expect him to have more touchdowns and yards per game with this number of targets, yet he only has 4 touchdowns. Diggs has also played 10 games, while the rest of the players on this list have either played 9 or 7.

 

3- DK Metcalf

DK Metcalf has had an impressive sophomore campaign with the Seattle Seahawks who are currently in first place in the NFC West with a record of 6-3. Metcalf sits at fourth in the league in yards per game with 90.7. He has caught 45 out of 72 targets — or 62.5% — for 816 yards.

Metcalf leads this list with the highest yards per reception with 18.1. He also has 8 touchdowns in 9 games, an impressive number, but not enough to boost him over the rest of the wide receivers on this list. He also has 248 YAC, compared to Adams’ 310.

Metcalf has been the best second-year wide receiver in the league, but it just hasn’t been enough yet to push him into first or second. Expectations are high for Metcalf’s career, and he will have a crucial role in the future of the Seahawks.

  

2- Davante Adams

Choosing between DK Metcalf and Davante Adams for the second-place spot was tough, but I have to go with Adams in the end. Adams has had 9 touchdowns so far this season, which is tied with Tyreek Hill and Minnesota’s Adam Thielen. The trio is leading the league in touchdowns up to this point. He also leads the league in yards per game with 105.9, over 10 yards more than the wide receiver in second place.

Adams has 61 receptions on 81 targets — which is 75%. He is only averaging 12.1 yards per reception and has 741 receiving yards, but he has also only played 7 games. He is the only wide receiver to average over 1 touchdown per game this year.

Adams has had a breakout year leading the Packer’s wide receiving core, but it simply wasn’t enough to catapult him up into the top spot.

 

1- DeAndre Hopkins 

There is no arguing the greatness of DeAndre Hopkins, he has even said it himself. Hopkins arguably has the best hands and route running in the league, and it has shown in the stats.

Hopkins is second in the league with 95.7 yards per game, 861 total yards and 67 receptions. Hopkins is third on this list in yards per reception with 12.9, but his 67 catches on 88 targets have given him an amazing catch rate of 76%, the highest on this list.

The combination of Hopkins’ highlight plays, catch rate and amazing consistency gives him the top spot in my book. The only question is, why did the Texans trade him away for so little?

 

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@SeanOverton3