The Jacksonville Jaguars’ wide receivers have something to prove. Not just to management and the coaching staff, but evidently to the rest of the NFL. After looking like one of the best young units in the NFL in 2015, the 2016 season wasn’t as bountiful. Part of the problem was the work of quarterback Blake Bortles. Part of it was injuries that affected both Allen Hurns and Rashad Greene. Another part was the lack of chemistry between quarterback and pass catcher. For whatever reason, the wide receivers who were ranked fourth by Pro Football Focus prior to last season have taken a tumble, per a story on sportsonearth.com.
Being ranked 11th in the NFL isn’t as bad as it might sound, but for a group that had opportunities it could not cash in on last season, this season could become a “show me type” of year.
Kenneth Arthur, the author of the Sports on Earth piece, does make some valid points – although dropping them this far may be a bit questionable.
“They seemed on the verge of having one of the best receiving units in the game, but neither Hurns nor Robinson could manage to catch even half of their targets from Blake Bortles last season. Not to say that's probably not a Blake Bortles problem, but it doesn't give us much of a chance to positively evaluate them either. At least Lee came through with his strongest career season.”
If Lee can put the same numbers together this season, the Jaguars may have found the deep threat they expected when he was drafted in the second round of the 2014 NFL Draft. Robinson has a chance to erase a poor season, where he only caught 73 passes, to challenge his team leading 80 receptions and 1,400 yards in 2015. Known for his acrobatic play only two seasons ago, Robinson looked grounded for much of the year.
If Hurns stays healthy, he could approach 1,000 yards receiving as well. Greene needs to shake off injuries to remain the team’s fourth option and top possession option. He will receive a solid push from rookie Dede Westbrook.
The next closest AFC South team on this list is the Houston Texans at 18. The Indianapolis Colts are one spot below at 19, followed by the Tennessee Titans were ranked 20th, but please note this story was written before the team signed Eric Decker. Whether the former New York Jets pass catcher impacts the rankings remains to be scene.
Tennessee did draft Western Michigan wide receiver Corey Davis with the fifth pick in this year’s NFL Draft.
At the top of this list, Arthur gives the New England Patriots the nod as best overall. The move to trade for Brandin Cooks, combined with Julian Edelman, Danny Amendola, Chris Hogan and Malcolm Mitchell will make it easy for Tom Brady to win another Super Bowl.