The NFL has become a passing league. We hear that all the time. To pass the ball, you need someone to catch it, and right now the league has one of the strongest suites of wide receivers we’ve ever seen. Only one can be the best, however, so our roundtable this week asks: who is the best wide receiver in the NFL right now?
Bobby Farris, Campus Correspondent
Antonio Brown. As tempting as it may be to choose Julio Jones, being that he just came off of a 300-yard game, I am going to go with consistency and that is Antonio Brown. Brown is 5-foot-10, 181 pounds and he plays much bigger than that. His route-running skills are on another planet, and there is no statistical category in the league that he is not competing for the top spot. For receptions, yards and touchdowns, Brown is in the top-10 and Julio Jones, who was such a close second for me, isn’t even doing that. Brown has been first or second in receiving yards every year dating back to 2013 and it did not matter if Big Ben, Michael Vick or Landry Jones was under center, Brown showed up. Say what you want about Odell Beckham Jr. and his one-handed catches or Julio’s 300-yard game, Brown is the best receiver all around and he proves that week after week.
Shahan Kamal, Campus Correspondent
This almost doesn’t feel fair. Julio Jones is a beast and has been playing like one this year again. Jones is the only reason the Panthers didn’t have an undefeated season last year, and to say he was instrumental in the Falcons’ win on Sunday would be the understatement of the year. Jones hit 300 receiving yards in the win, and currently leads the league in receiving yards. He even leads the league in yards per reception amongst players with more than 10 catches. After a quarter of the season, he’s on pace for nearly 2,000 yards. With more games against suspect defenses in his division, it’s not ridiculous to think he might just do it. He’s put up more impressive numbers than Antonio Brown on an average of three fewer targets a game, and Odell Beckham Jr. has struggled as of late, so it’s hard to see anyone being better than Julio Jones right now.
Austin Mirmina, Campus Correspondent
If you asked me this question a week ago, I would have told you Antonio Brown without hesitation. But then last Sunday happened, and Julio Jones roasted the Panthers secondary for 300 yards, becoming only the sixth player in league history to record that many receiving yards in a game. Wow – what a huge performance. It’s funny how one week in the NFL can change our entire outlook. I give the slight edge to Jones, who, at 6-foot-3, has the size of former Lions wideout Calvin Johnson and the speed of Brown, making him a hybrid of the two. Not to mention, he’s on my fantasy team.
Ian O’Connor, Campus Correspondent
Despite his lack of star power and the Detroit Lions’ 1-3 start, Marvin Jones has proven to be one of the best wide receivers in the NFL. Through four weeks, he is second in receiving yards (482), tied for first in 20-plus yard receptions (9, Julio Jones), and first among wide receivers in yards after the catch (156). Without Calvin Johnson, the sidearm-slinging Matthew Stafford needed a deep threat in the offense, and Jones has filled that void to this point. In his first season with the Lions, he has put up at least 74 receiving yards in every game, with a career-high 205 yards against the Packers in Week 3. If he is given enough targets throughout the season and the Lions show some improvement, Jones will surprisingly be the best WR in the NFL.
Bobby Farris is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Shahan Kamal is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at email@example.com.
Austin Mirmina is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus and can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Ian O’Connor is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. He can be reached via email at ian.o’email@example.com.