As always, these are my selections for the top 5 receivers in the NFL right now. I heavily weighted these guys in terms of their performances in 2011. Enjoy.
5. Mike Wallace
Mike Wallace is one of the most exciting young receivers in the NFL. His blazing speed creates huge mismatches in the secondary, and he opens up the Steelers running game as well as stretching the defense both vertically and to the sidelines. He's a quickly rising star, and I see no reason why he won't continue to climb higher on this list. It seems doubtful that he'll be with the Steelers beyond 2012. Watch out for him on the open market in 2013.
4. Victor Cruz
Victor Cruz really did come out of nowhere for the Giants in 2011. This was a guy that most of us hadn't even heard about before the season started, and now there's very few well-informed football fans that don't know who he is. He demands immediate attention from the opposition, and like all the guys on this list, his contribution isn't limited to just catching passes. He's the type of athlete that keeps defensive coordinators up all night long.
3. Andre Johnson
The final three on this list are all very close, and I put them in the order I think they belong right now. As I said, this list heavily favors guys that performed well in 2011, and Andre Johnson only made it on the field 7 times in 2011. Even so, Johnson should be getting back to his former standing in 2012, and a guy with the size and talent that Johnson has will always cause big problems for the opposition.
2. Larry Fitzgerald
If this list was about the five best receivers over the past 5 years, Fitzgerald would be number one without a doubt, but it's about who's the best right now, and Larry Fitzgerald ranks behind one other guy in my mind. Still, Fitzgerald is a great combination of speed, quickness (yes, separate from pure speed), and talent. He doesn't drop passes, and we don't hear about him turning the Cardinals locker room into a media circus. In short, he's the perfect type of guy you want on your team.
1. Calvin Johnson
The best wide receiver in the NFL today is without a doubt Calvin Johnson. He led the league in receiving last season with 1,681 yards to go along with his 16 touchdown receptions. He has all the size you could ever want as a receiver, and he uses it to his full advantage. Calvin Johnson is living proof that even a general manager as terrible as Matt Millen can get a pick right occasionally.
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Instead of Wallace at number 5 put Welker. He did lead the NFL in receiving yards and receptions for most of the year. That is a pretty much glaring omission
The Mike Wallace pick is kind of unfair; all he does is run down the field & beet his coverage (when his speed is gone he's done. How come you didn't put Laurent Robinson (13 touchdowns & also lead the Cowboys in receptions too), Miles Austin, & or DeSean Jackson up there? You could of easily of made a 5, into a tens list... no Demaryius Thomas?
@ChristopherLanham Robinson was never really a consideration. He isn't even the Jaguars' #1 guy this year. Austin, Jackson, and Thomas were all in the running, but they just didn't impress me as much as Wallace and Cruz. Maybe I've seen to much of Wallace, but the guy is under-appreciated.
Ok, if you say so (about Wallace), I just think somebody else could had made a better candidate (DeSean). Doesn't mean I didn't like you're presentation of your 'Top Five, wasn't good & rounded, & calculated with a good assumption. It's you're report.
What is wrong with Laurent R. though? but anyhow, I like Austin better, even though he pulled his hamstring.
I like two NFL Teams the best; 1 is Seattle (is why I really didn't like the Wallace pick more then likely), 2 Jaguars (nobody better pull a hamstring) don't you think Robinson could pull off number one slot, or two by the beginning of the season, & or at some point in the season?
He is as good as Wallace (except the 1st burst), only because I haven't seen too many different routes performed by Wallace, then again, maybe I'm just prejudice, & looking for an excuse.
Good subject though. I like rounding them down too sometimes, but there are so many QB's & WR's, RB's in the game, it seems kind of unfair, not mentioning at least ten of them.
What compelled you guys to only name five instead of a whole ten thing?
@ChristopherLanham I'm only naming 5 players at each position simply because I feel that there's usually a few players that separate themselves from the rest of the field. As you saw with this list, it gets complicated beyond the first few, and a top 10 just makes the lists more and more controversial. We certainly do enjoy the debate back and forth though.
@EthanDaul I think that Nelson could, or should of been five, like you said, either him or Jennings, which ever one has/had better stats. What about Wes Welker too. See, ten man...
@smaclemons @ChristopherLanham Wallace is pretty studly, but definitely the most borderline guy On the list. Those other guys listed are definitely NOT top 5 though...