PoF: Best Single Games – Wide Receivers

| August 8, 2013

Welcome to the Pro Football Focus Page of Fame for wide receivers, where only the best one-off performances during our time grading (2007 – Present) are mentioned.

If this is your first visit to a “PFF PoF” then the rules are pretty simple. Each game is it’s own island, and only the highest grades make it onto the list.

Anything at or over a +5.5 grade for this position will get the recognition it deserves!

1. Wes Welker, 2011 – WK3, NE @ BUF: +7.9

Receiving: +7.5, Rushing: +0.3, Run Blocking: -0.1, Penalties: +0.2

The Patriots would end up suffering a shock defeat to a surging Bills outfit, but you can’t blame Welker for that. In addition to his two touchdowns he amassed a huge 217 yards, with a healthy 3.55 yards per route run. Nice.

2. Calvin Johnson, 2011 – Wilcard, DET @ NO : +7.3

Receiving: +7.2, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: 0.0, Penalties: +0.1

Johnson did everything he possibly could to keep the Lions season alive with one of the great postseason displays from a receiver. His 211 yards don’t tell the whole story, as he broke five tackles, picked up two touchdowns, and overcame an awful lot of Saints defensive attention.

=3. Reggie Wayne, 2012 – WK5, GB @ IND: +7.1

Receiving: +7.4, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: -0.6, Penalties: +0.3

The Colts stunning comeback win over the Packers was inspired by a breathtaking piece of receiving from Wayne, who toiled for 94 snaps to turn the game his team’s way. His 212 yards and touchdown sparked a remarkable race to the playoffs for a previously little thought of Indy team.

=3. Demaryius Thomas, 2012 – WK8, NO @ DEN: +7.1

Receiving: +4.0, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: +2.9, Penalties: +0.2

It wasn’t just his receiving that got Thomas a spot here. His blocking was as good as it gets for a receiver and it showed in the success the Broncos had running the ball. That’s not to say his pass catching wasn’t the biggest part of his game that contributed. Far from it, as the 137 yards and one touchdown show.

5. Calvin Johnson, 2013 – WK8, DAL @ DET: +5.9

Receiving: +5.3, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: +0.4, Penalties: +0.2

The scary thing about this grade is that but for a drop and a fumble it would have been even higher. Still it’s not a bad day when you can pick up 329 yards and a touchdown as you roast a Dallas defense that has no answer for you. A quite remarkable day.

6. Mike Sims-Walker, 2010 – WK8, JAX @ DAL: +5.8

Receiving: +4.8, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: +0.9, Penalties: +0.1

A career day for Sims-Walker, who inflicted a miserable Sunday on a Cowboys team who just couldn’t get to grips with him. He caught eight of the nine balls thrown his way while picking up a touchdown for his trouble, in a performance he’d never replicate.

=7. Santana Moss, 2008 – WK2, NO @ WAS: +5.7

Receiving: +3.8, Rushing: +0.8, Run Blocking: +0.9, Penalties: +0.2

With a big 27 yard run and 164 yards on the day, this was Santana Moss at his most destructive. Near enough unstoppable, he caught seven of the nine balls thrown his way as the Saints’ defensive backs looked helpless to stop him.

=7. Anquan Boldin, 2007 – WK3, ARZ @ BAL: +5.7

Receiving: +5.1, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: +0.9, Penalties: -0.3

A monster day for Boldin who did his bit to get the Cardinals passing attack going. He caught 14 of 16 balls, with 97 of his 181 yards coming after the catch. Not too bad at all. Nor were the two touchdowns he picked up.

=7. Marvin Jones, 2013 – WK8, NYJ @ CIN: +5.7

Receiving: +5.6, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: 0.0, Penalties: +0.1

19 snaps. That was all the opportunity Jones needed to pick up a remarkable grade. Showing stunning efficiency he caught all eight balls thrown his way for 122 yards and four touchdowns. It was a perfect outing for the Bengal.

=7. Brandon Marshall, 2013, WK14, DAL @ CHI: +5.7

Receiving: +3.1, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: +2.4, Penalties: +0.2

Marshall has had bigger receiving days but his blocking pushed this from very good into the great category. Still there’s no shame in hauling in 6-of-8 targets for 100 yards, and the work he can do with his perimeter blocking is so much more than you’d expect from a wide receiver.

=10. Andre Johnson, 2008 – WK8, CIN @ HST: +5.6

Receiving: +4.0, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: +1.4, Penalties: +0.2

Just the kind of performance you expect from Johnson, who made life exceptionally hard for the Bengals. His good work in the run game was a bonus, but he’s on this list because of his 143 receiving yards, that and the trouble he caused in the passing game.

=10. Larry Fitzgerald, 2011 – WK17, SEA @ ARZ: +5.6

Receiving: +5.5, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: -0.1, Penalties: +0.2

Overcoming some terrible quarterback play, Fitzgerald was still able to show off his talents, and none more so than his 2011 swansong. While others were picking up more yardage, Fitzgerald ended with 149 yards, and 67 of those coming after the catch. You’ll rarely see a receiver have to work that hard for them.

=12. Derrick Mason, 2008 – WK9, BAL @ CLV: +5.5

Receiving: +3.9, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: +1.4, Penalties: +0.2

In this all AFC North showdown, it was Mason who took home the PFF Game Ball with a performance all young receivers should watch. Catching all nine of the balls thrown his way for 136 yards and a touchdown, he also did his bit to help the team’s running game.

=12. Lee Evans, 2007 – WK9, CIN @ BUF: +5.5

Receiving: +5.4, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: -0.1, Penalties: +0.2

Evans was once the toast of Buffalo, and it was performances like this that showed him off to be a difference-making receiver. Despite not having the best QB talent in the league to work with he still produced to the tune of 165 yards and a TD.

=12. Pierre Garcon, 2013 – WK9, SD @ WAS: +5.5

Receiving: +5.4, Rushing: 0.0, Run Blocking: -0.1, Penalties: +0.2

It wasn’t just the 172 yards that caught the eye, but the manner of them. Making a number of spectacular grabs fit for any highlight reel, Garcon was dominant and a key part of a big win for the Redskins.


Follow Khaled on Twitter: @PFF_Khaled

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