Top 10 NFL receivers entering Week 6
The Pro Football Focus 2015 player grades made their debut this weekend, and with just one game left on the Week 5 slate, Julio Jones holds a narrow grip over Antonio Brown in WR our rankings.
Here are our top 10 wide receivers entering Week 6 of the NFL season:
1. Julio Jones, Falcons (95.0 receiving grade)
Jones had been so dominant through the first four weeks that a regression was expected, but two drops and a 50 percent catch rate in Week 5 wasn’t foreseen by many. His 3.04 yards per route run ranks third in the league.
2. Antonio Brown, Steelers (94.5 receiving grade)
With the injury to QB Ben Roethlisberger, Brown’s streak of five-reception, 50-yard games ended. An extra week of practice with QB Michael Vick should help their chemistry, as well as Brown’s hold on the league lead in YPPR at 3.49.
3. Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals (90.1 receiving grade)
Fitzgerald has retooled his game this season to play both in the slot and out wide. Logging 61.7 percent of his pass snaps in the slot, Fitzgerald has just one drop on 44 targets and the second-best YPPR at 3.18. He also leads all WRs with a 152.7 passer rating when targeted.
4. A.J. Green, Bengals (87.8 receiving grade)
Green started the season inconsistently, but has come on strong the past three games, grading as the best WR in the league while notching 22 catches, 387 yards and two touchdowns in that span. If he keeps up his hot streak (and QB Andy Dalton continues to avoid the famous “Dalton Coaster”), Green can crack the top three spots.
5. Steve Smith Sr., Ravens (87.1 receiving grade)
Smith suffered by not playing this week, as the Browns’ pass defense has been very kind to opposing WRs. Leading all WRs in forced missed tackles (11), Smith has been even more impressive, considering QB Joe Flacco is having a career-low season.
6. Julian Edelman, Patriots (86.4 receiving grade)
Edelman started the season ranked No. 3, with an impressive 11-for-12 catch performance on just 48 snaps. With the sheer number of pass plays the Patriots run, Edelman needs to continue to receive double-digit targets to maintain his ranking. Week 5 only saw him targeted five times, but he made the most of those targets, forcing four missed tackles and averaging 20 yards after the catch per reception.
7. DeAndre Hopkins, Texans (86.1 receiving grade)
Leading the league in targets by 17, Hopkins is clearly the favorite option of whichever quarterback the Texans decide to put on the field. Also leading the league in yards at 579, Hopkins suffers slightly with a 56 catch percentage, four drops, and just two forced missed tackles.
8. Odell Beckham Jr., Giants (84.7 receiving grade)
PFF’s No. 1 WR a year ago, Beckham is struggling (by his standards) in his sophomore season. While not grading negatively in any game a year ago, Beckham’s Week 4 outing at Buffalo is something he’d like to forget. His two drops match his total a year ago.
9. James Jones, Packers (84.5 receiving grade)
The difference QB Aaron Rodgers can have on his receivers is epitomized in Jones, as the former Packer-Raider-Giant was thought to be washed up and done. Five games into the 2015 season, Jones has shown he still can produce with zero drops on 23 targets, a 142.0 passer rating when targeted, and 20.7 yards per reception.
10. Michael Crabtree, Raiders (84.0 receiving grade)
Another unlikely player to land on this list, Crabtree is thriving as the No. 2 WR behind rookie Amari Cooper. While Cooper is plagued with four drops, Crabtree has yet to drop a pass on 47 targets. Even though he has just one touchdown, he has forced four missed tackles, and has consistently moved the chains.
Just missing the list: T.Y. Hilton, Allen Hurns, Emmanuel Sanders