Top 5 receiving crews heading into the 2018 NFL season
As we know, the game has gone in the direction of being a QB league, with QBs putting up insane passing yards, that are mind-boggling. Changes always come around, and we are living through a very explosive offensive game these days. QB receiver connections are critical. This is indeed a hard time for DBs – to see if they can try to avoid getting twisted around on a crossing route or getting “too handsy” and giving up stupid penalties when trying to keep these teams under control with their deadly receiving combinations they will throw at them.
Some teams made some huge and exciting changes, adding great players, and on paper, look to have all the right pieces. But, there are always some trepidations, a few of the other potentially lethal receiving corps are;
The Cleveland Browns
With signing WR Jarvis Landry, and Dez Bryant, they added other talented players who get to work with exceptionally talented, but oft-troubled, Josh Gordon, the team could have a wicked receiving crew.
The Los Angeles Rams
Adding perennial open fielder, Brandin Cooks, who comes off a 16.6 YD/catch season with Robert Woods and excellent route runner, Cooper Kupp is going to be interesting.
The Green Bay Packers
Underrated WR Davante Adams just had another 10 TD season, add in a still dangerous, Jimmy Graham, and his 10 TD potential, with “perfect WR3” Randall Cobb, and his spot as the short option for future HoF’er, Aaron Rodgers…it could easily be a 35+ TD season for ARod.
But, they didn’t make the top 5.
So with that said, here we go to the teams that will, without a doubt, be your top 5…
5. Detroit Lions
With an excellent combined YDs / catch at 15.3 ypc with 2 of their top 3 receivers who can move the chains fast, in Marvin Jones Jr and Kenny Golladay – but Golladay is still just a 1 route guy, Golden Tate is a magnificent slot WR. Tate doesn’t have a dual real threat at TE across the middle, Stafford seems like he just throws the ball in his direction, and expects him to make the play. But they just keep giving steady results.
4. Pittsburgh Steelers
With Big Ben firing the ball around, it makes some things better for these guys. The TE position is very weak but they have a real nice thing going with their WRs, and are led by their strong and very skilled WRs. We start with the best WR in the NFL, Antonio Brown, who is a yard producer, and TD producer, 21 year old JuJu Smith-Schuster brings big play ability and yard production. We all know AB is going to be dominant, regardless if he is double teamed or not. He is the best route runner, and to be honest, there is nothing he cannot do on the field. With AB on the other side, the sky is the limit for JuJu Smith-Schuster to get even better.
3. Minnesota Vikings
Case Keenum led this team at QB in 2017 with 22 TD passes. Let that sink in for a few brief moments. Between these three, they tallied 17 TDs between these guys, accounting for 77% of his 22 TD passes, in games he was throwing the ball. A career journeyman QB was better because of their outstanding WR play. They also have the benefit with experienced youth on their side. Target magnet, Adam Thielen, is only 27 , Stefon Diggs is 24, and the oldest guy, Kyle Rudolph, is 28. Adam and Diggs will return to their WRA, and WRA2 form and show why they are one of the best WR tandems to deal with. They can dominate secondaries in every aspect of the game. Now with 27+TD/year QB, Kirk Cousins throwing the ball, teams better be very careful, when they pick their poison.
2. New York Giants
Massive yardage ready to go.
Truly ridiculous skills here with this crew of receivers, with Odell Beckham Jr., Sterling Shepard, and Evan Engram. TE Evan Engram is on brink of being next bigtime TE. Firstly, we have to remember, OBJ one of the best WR in league, with 3 seasons of 1300 or more YDs, and 12 TDs/year average when healthy. Sterling Shepard is a great pass catcher, and route runner out of the slot, as he showed when had 8 TDs when OBJ was outside of him in 2016. Evan Engram is a 240 lb TE with incredible athleticism and unique way of exploding to the middle of the field, and he finds the end zone. And with Beckham getting back to the field, the Giants wont have to heavily rely on the younger guys as much, which is scary.
1. Kansas City Chiefs
Here is the big shocker for the list.
This squad is led by ultra speed demon, Tyreek Hill, who lit up defenders for 15.8 YPC, and 1183 yards, including 9 games of averaging 17 ypc or more. Their TE, Travis Kelce, is the best TE in the league now, can we all just admit this yet? Gronk is no longer exclusively “the TE” – Travis Kelce has replaced him. Sammy Watkins and his instinctive nose for the end zone was shown in spades when playing for the Rams last year, with no other top notch WR to take eyes off of him. Now, in KC, Sammy Watkins will be able to move around a little more freely, with Tyreek Hill taking the top off things, which is absolutely going to be terrifying for DBs. Because Sammy isnt a slow WR, by any means, with career YPC numbers of 15.9 – he also generates serious speed. Hill has already shown that he can be a top weapon as he had 1183 yards last year with career “game manager” Alex Smith throwing to him. It will be huge for Mahomes’ development to be able to throw the ball to these guys in 2018. So expect big things from Hill and this crew this NFL Football season