Despite leading the NFL in receptions, receiving yards, and receiving touchdowns in 2021, and being named Super Bowl MVP, Cooper Kupp is NOT the NFL’s best receiver.
Don’t get me wrong, he’s very close to the top. But right now, I’ve got someone else at the top of the board.
Here are my Top Five NFL receivers:
5. Ja’Marr Chase
Yes, even as a rookie, it was clear Ja’Marr Chase was a top five receiver in the NFL. While it was a tough call between Chase and ex-LSU teammate Justin Jefferson, Chase’s consistent explosive plays and ability after the catch gives him a very slight edge.
The highlight of Chase’s rookie year came in week 17, where he caught 11 passes for an NFL rookie record 266 yards and three touchdowns. To make it to the Super Bowl as a rookie is an incredible achievement. Chase and Burrow will continue to be one of the best combinations in all of football, as this AFC is just the beginning for the two young studs.
4. Deebo Samuel
The most difficult receiver to rank on this list, Deebo Samuel is a Swiss-army knife who can produce wherever he is. In his breakout season, Samuel was San Francisco’s most utilized weapon, and scored sixteen touchdowns throughout the regular and postseason.
Samuel compiled over 1400 receiving yards on the year, however it is his rushing ability that makes him such a unique superstar. Credit to Kyle Shanahan, the 49ers have taken advantage of Samuel’s strength and elusiveness with the ball in his hands and utilized him as an incredible runner.
If it was not for Cooper Kupp’s season, Deebo Samuel would have been regarded as the breakout player of the 2021-22 season.
3. Tyreek Hill
In an offense that features Patrick Mahomes and Travis Kelce, Tyreek Hill is the scariest player on the field at all times. He can break for a touchdown any play, and is by far the fastest player in the league.
His mere presence on the field completely changes coverages to adjust to his vertical strengths. Production wise, Tyreek had slightly under 1300 yards and nine touchdowns. While not as eye-popping as some players ranked below, one must understand the amount of weapons there are in Kansas City. If Hill was targeted at the same rate as other players on the list, he would positively have just as great, if not better statistics on a yearly basis.
2. Cooper Kupp
Cooper Kupp’s story from zero-star recruit to Super Bowl MVP is miraculous. Including playoffs, he has put up more than 2,400 yards and 22 touchdowns. He is the first receiver to win the receiving triple crown and Super Bowl MVP in the same season, with Jerry Rice being the only other player to do it over the span of his career.
Kupp has been in the league since 2017 and has shown flashes in the past, however nobody could have seen this level of a breakout season. He is a better athlete than most give him credit for, and his route running is close to perfect.
Despite all the greatness, I still do not rank Kupp as the best wideout in pro football.
1. Davante Adams
Davante Adams is about as perfect of a receiver as there could be. His footwork is second to none, has the size and athleticism to match up against anyone, and has produced consistently at a top level for years. With four-time MVP Aaron Rodgers, Adams finished with more than 1,500 yards and 11 touchdowns.
While Kupp accomplished much more this season, I still believe Davante Adams is the better wide receiver. Adams is the only consistent receiving threat in the Packers’ offense, and has torched the league’s best on a consistent basis, including the likes of Jalen Ramsey.
It is tough to argue against someone who has done things only Jerry Rice has also done, but Adams’ full body of work remains more impressive, keeping him at number one in the position rankings.
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