NFL News & Analysis

NFL wide receiver corps rankings ahead of Week 8

Cincinnati, OH, USA; The Bengals offense celebrates a touchdown catch by wide receiver Ja'Marr Chase (1) in the second quarter of the NFL Week 7 game between the Cincinnati Bengals and the Atlanta Falcons at Paycor Stadium in downtown Cincinnati on Sunday, Oct. 23, 2022. The Bengals led 28-17 at halftime. Mandatory Credit: Sam Greene-The Enquirer

Bengals take over the No. 1 spot: The trio of Ja'Marr Chase, Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd has given opposing defenses fits in recent weeks.

Eagles soar into top five: Despite the lack of a dynamic No. 3 receiver, A.J. Brown and Devonta Smith are propelling the unit.

Giants remain at No. 32 with banged-up unit: New York has overcome adversity to sit at 6-1 despite its makeshift wide receiver corps.

Estimated Reading Time: 19 mins

1. CINCINNATI BENGALS (Up 1 from Week 3)

WR1: Ja’Marr Chase (78.9)
WR2: Tee Higgins (77.4)
WR3: Tyler Boyd (74.5)

This is still the best wide receiver corps in the NFL, and it's playing like it once again. All three receivers are capable of going for over 125 yards in any given week — that’s what makes them so dangerous. The Bengals would be wise to add some more speed to the bottom of this unit, but there really isn’t much else to knock here. 

PFF stats to know:

  • Ja’Marr Chase is tied for the most first-down receptions (34) with Cooper Kupp and Tyreek Hill.
  • The Bengals' top three receivers have combined for just four drops on 148 targets.
  • Tee Higgins is averaging 2.13 yards per route run, 18th-best in the NFL.

2. MIAMI DOLPHINS (Down 1)

WR1: Tyreek Hill (90.3)
WR2: Jaylen Waddle (78.4)
WR3: Trent Sherfield (60.7)

Tyreek Hill is the highest-graded receiver in the NFL, and Jaylen Waddle isn’t far behind. This is the best one-two punch in the league, and we've never seen speed together like this before. The only thing keeping the Dolphins from the No. 1 spot is their third receiver spot, but it really doesn’t matter too much when Hill and Waddle play at this level.

PFF stats to know:

  • Tyreek Hill leads the NFL in yards per route run (3.38). No other wide receiver is over 2.9 yards per route run.
  • Jaylen Waddle and Hill have combined for 575 yards after the catch this season.
  • Waddle is tied for the most drops in the NFL (5).


3. BUFFALO BILLS (Up 1)

WR1: Stefon Diggs (90.3)
WR2: Gabriel Davis (65.3)
WR3: Isaiah McKenzie (64.4)

Diggs has been the NFL’s best receiver this season, dominating in every game. Gabriel Davis has played better over the past two weeks now that he’s healthy. The Bills have even gotten strong performances from Khalil Shakir and Jake Kumerow when called upon. This is one of the best and deepest receiving corps in the league.

PFF stats to know:

  • Stefon Diggs is averaging 2.85 yards per route run, second-best in the NFL.
  • Bills quarterbacks have a 143.0 passer rating when targeting Diggs, second-best in the league.
  • Gabriel Davis has a 98-yard reception this season. No other player in the NFL has one over 75 yards.
  • Davis is averaging 27.4 yards per reception this year, the most in the NFL.

4. PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (Up 4)

WR1: A.J. Brown (84.4)
WR2: DeVonta Smith (76.1)
WR3: Quez Watkins (53.0)

Brown has been exactly what the Eagles needed to unlock their offense and take it to the next level. He and Smith are perfect together, as their skill sets complement one another well. The only knock on the Eagles is the lack of a dynamic No. 3 receiver. But it’s not an issue when Brown and Smith are playing at this level.

PFF stats to know:

  • Brown and Smith have combined for 43 first-down receptions this season.
  • Brown is averaging 2.50 yards per route run, eighth-best in the NFL.

5. SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (Up 6)

WR1: Deebo Samuel (68.2)
WR2: Brandon Aiyuk (81.1)
WR3: Jauan Jennings (66.7)

Brandon Aiyuk's emergence now has the 49ers in the conversation as one of the best wide receiver corps in the NFL. The third-year receiver has become a much more consistent player, and that has allowed the 49ers to throw the ball with even more success this season. Even Jauan Jennings has played well, giving San Francisco three reliable and trusted receivers. 

PFF stats to know:

  • Deebo Samuel leads the NFL in yards after the catch per reception (9.3).
  • He also leads all receivers in missed tackles forced (21). No other receiver in the NFL has more than 13. 
  • Jauan Jennings is averaging 7.2 yards after the catch per reception, tied for seventh-best in the league.

6. LAS VEGAS RAIDERS (Down 1)

WR1: Davante Adams (80.7)
WR2: Hunter Renfrow (62.8)
WR3: Mack Hollins (67.1)

Davante Adams has been everything the Raiders could have hoped for and more this season. He is meshing well with Derek Carr and has had no problem putting up numbers in Las Vegas. However, the story here is Mack Hollins, who has emerged as a quality player for the Raiders. His size and ball skills have made him a frequent red-zone target for Carr.

PFF stats to know:

  • Hunter Renfrow leads all receivers in fumbles, with three.
  • Derek Carr has a 125.2 passer rating when targeting Mack Hollins this season.
  • Hollins has an average depth of target of 15.3 yards, the highest on the team this year.

7. SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (Up 2)

WR1: D.K. Metcalf (73.0)
WR2: Tyler Lockett (77.2)
WR3: Marquise Goodwin (60.5)

Despite the change in quarterback, the Seahawks' receivers keep producing. The duo of Metcalf and Lockett is one of the most dynamic and consistent pairings in the league. The Seahawks could use more playmaking from the rest of their receivers, but Metcalf and Lockett keep this unit in the top 10.

PFF stats to know:

  • Both Metcalf and Lockett are averaging over 2.0 yards per route run.
  • They have combined to drop only two passes on 103 targets.

8. TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS (Down 5)

WR1: Mike Evans (75.7)
WR2: Chris Godwin (74.9)
WR3: Russell Gage (59.7)

Going into the season, you could have made a strong case that this was the No. 1 unit in the league. But Julio Jones can’t stay healthy, and Russell Gage has been a bit of a disappointment. Evans and Godwin have both been fine, but both players seem to be declining a bit. It’s still a very good group overall, but one that's not quite as dynamic as we’d hoped going into the season. 

PFF stats to know:

  • Mike Evans is averaging 2.0 yards per route run, most on the team.
  • Russell Gage has not forced a missed tackle yet this season.
  • 24 of Mike Evans’ receptions have gone for first downs.

9. MINNESOTA VIKINGS (Down 2)

WR1: Justin Jefferson (78.8)
WR2: Adam Thielen (68.8)
WR3: K.J. Osborn (61.3)

Justin Jefferson has been incredible again this season, and the only reason the Vikings aren’t higher is due to what’s behind him. Thielen has been fine this season, but he is clearly declining. Osborn is an average-at-best WR3, and there is not a lot of depth here. However, Jefferson has been so good that it has not really mattered.

PFF stats to know:

  • Justin Jefferson is averaging 2.74 yards per route run, third-best in the NFL.
  • Jefferson has 293 yards after the catch, second-most in the NFL.


10. LOS ANGELES RAMS (Down 4)

WR1: Cooper Kupp (87.2)
WR2: Allen Robinson II (60.9)
WR3: Ben Skowronek (55.7)

Cooper Kupp has been incredible again this season. But the Rams just have not gotten enough from everyone else. Allen Robinson II is seemingly not a fit in this offense, and his signing is starting to look like one of the worst moves of the offseason. Hopefully, Van Jefferson returning to the field can help this unit. But this has to be one of the most disappointing wide receiver corps, outside of Kupp, in the NFL.

PFF stats to know:

  • Cooper Kupp leads in the NFL in total yards after the catch (311) so far this season.
  • Matthew Stafford has just a 50.0 passer rating when targeting Allen Robinson II.

11. LOS ANGELES CHARGERS (Down 1)

WR1: Keenan Allen (75.4)
WR2: Mike Williams (71.7)
WR3: Josh Palmer (58.6)

It’s hard to accurately rank this group, considering Keenan Allen has played just 45 snaps this season. And now, Mike Williams is set to miss the next month with a high ankle sprain. This is one of the most talented units in the league, but it can’t stay healthy and isn't getting enough from players like Josh Palmer and DeAndre Carter this season. 

PFF stats to know:

  • Mike Williams leads the NFL in contested catches this season (11). 
  • Justin Herbert has a 109.9 passer rating when targeting Williams, the highest among all of the Chargers' receivers.

12. NEW ORLEANS SAINTS (No Change)

WR1: Michael Thomas (77.2)
WR2: Chris Olave (79.6)
WR3: Jarvis Landry (67.6)

When everyone is healthy, you can make a case that this is one of the top five wide receiver units in the league. But that’s been the issue. No one can seem to stay healthy for more than a few games at a time. The good news is that Chris Olave looks like a future star in the NFL. If Thomas can get back on the field soon, they’ll have one of the best duos in the league.

PFF stats to know:

  • Chris Olave’s average depth of target is 17.4 yards, second-best in the NFL among receivers with 20 or more targets.
  • Quarterbacks have a 134.7 passer rating when targeting Michael Thomas, fourth-best in the NFL.

13. ARIZONA CARDINALS (Up 4)

WR1: DeAndre Hopkins (64.0)
WR2: Marquise Brown (74.8)
WR3: Rondale Moore (57.8)

DeAndre Hopkins is back in the lineup after his suspension, but the Cardinals will now be without Marquise Brown for the next several weeks. The hope is that Robbie Anderson can eventually grow into that role, but time will tell. This is one of the deepest wide receiver units in the league, but it needs to stay healthy.

PFF stats to know:

  • Arizona quarterbacks have a 128.3 passer rating when targeting Greg Dortch.
  • Rondale Moore is averaging 7.6 yards after the catch per reception, sixth-best in the NFL.
  • A.J. Green is averaging 0.34 yards per route run, the lowest in the NFL.

14. DETROIT LIONS (Up 4)

WR1: Amon-Ra St. Brown (78.2)
WR2: Josh Reynolds (71.8)
WR3: D.J. Chark Jr. (61.1)

The Lions' receivers have been really good this season when on the field. That’s been a bit of a problem, though, as St. Brown, Reynolds and Chark have all missed time. This group is talented and should be even better when Jameson Williams joins them at some point in the season.

When healthy, St. Brown is among the most dangerous slot receivers in the league. He’s been a bit banged up over the past few games, but don’t forget that he was averaging 84 yards and a touchdown across the first three games of the season.

PFF stats to know:

  • Lions quarterbacks have a 114.1 passer rating when targeting Amon-Ra St. Brown.
  • 16 of Josh Reynolds’ 24 receptions have gone for first downs
  • D.J. Chark Jr.’s average depth of target is 18.4 yards, the highest among all receivers in the NFL. 

15. DALLAS COWBOYS (Down 2)

WR1: CeeDee Lamb (75.6)
WR2: Michael Gallup (60.7)
WR3: Noah Brown (69.0)

CeeDee Lamb has played well, but he hasn’t quite made the leap everyone hoped for this season. He certainly hasn’t been a disappointment, as he continues to make plays every week, regardless of who is at quarterback.

The bigger concern here is Michael Gallup, who just hasn’t looked the same since returning from his knee injury. Dak Prescott and Cooper Rush have a combined 47.4 passer rating when targeting Gallup. The Cowboys need him to start to play better in order to unlock the vertical passing game. 

PFF stats to know:

  • Michael Gallup is averaging just 1.3 yards after the catch per reception, second-worst in the NFL.
  • Noah Brown has eight contested catches this season, tied for the third-most in the NFL.
  • CeeDee Lamb is averaging 2.17 yards per route run, 14th in the league.

16. NEW YORK JETS (Up 3)

WR1: Garrett Wilson (73.0)
WR2: Corey Davis (71.3)
WR3: Elijah Moore (58.3)

It has been hard to evaluate the Jets' young receivers, as Zach Wilson is averaging only 14.5 completions per game. But we can see that Garrett Wilson is extremely dynamic with the ball in his hands and that Corey Davis has found a home in the slot. The key for the Jets is finding ways for Elijah Moore to be successful, as he has not yet meshed well with Zach Wilson in his career. 

PFF stats to know:

  • Garrett Wilson ranks third in the NFL in missed tackles forced (10), behind only Deebo Samuel (21) and Cooper Kupp (13). 
  • Corey Davis’ average depth of target is 16.7 yards, fourth-highest among receivers with 20-plus targets.

17. PITTSBURGH STEELERS (Down 3)

WR1: Diontae Johnson (67.0)
WR2: George Pickens (68.9)
WR3: Chase Claypool (60.9)

This is one of the most physically gifted wide receiver corps in the league, but it lacks consistency. Johnson continues to struggle with drops, and Claypool can’t be relied on to be in the right spot at the right time. The Steelers' best receiver this season has been Pickens, but he is still a rookie and has a relatively limited route tree. This unit has to start playing more consistently to be considered a top-10 unit, although the ceiling is incredibly high.

PFF stats to know:

  • Diontae Johnson has received the fourth-most targets in the NFL (65).
  • Steelers quarterbacks have thrown five interceptions when targeting Johnson this season. 
  • George Pickens’ average depth of target is 14.6 yards, the 10th-highest in the league.


18. KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (Up 10)

WR1: JuJu Smith-Schuster (71.7)
WR2: Marquez Valdes-Scantling (66.0)
WR3: Mecole Hardman (70.6)

The Chiefs' receivers finally had a breakout game in Week 7, as both Smith-Schuster and Valdes-Scantling went over 100 yards. And it was Hardman who scored three touchdowns in the win over the 49ers. It is not a star-studded group, but Kansas City's receivers have played well this season.

PFF stats to know:

  • JuJu Smith-Schuster is averaging 8.2 yards after the catch per reception, third-most in the NFL.
  • Patrick Mahomes has a 141.3 passer rating when targeting Mecole Hardman this season.

19. NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (Up 9)

WR1: Jakobi Meyers (79.2)
WR2: DeVante Parker (69.3)
WR3: Nelson Agholor (67.1)

As a whole, the Patriots' wide receiver corps has played fairly well this season. DeVante Parker is starting to grow in the offense, and they are now using more of Tyquan Thornton, who brings a speed element to the roster. Meyers continues to be a reliable weapon, and Agholor has made a bunch of key plays for the Patriots. There is not a No. 1 receiver here, but the team's depth is among the best in the league.

PFF stats to know:

  • DeVante Parker leads the NFL in average depth of target (18.3) among receivers with 20-plus targets. 
  • Patriots quarterbacks have a 131.7 passer rating when targeting Jakobi Meyers this season. 
  • New England quarterbacks have thrown four interceptions when targeting Parker, second-most in the NFL.

20. ATLANTA FALCONS (Up 11)

WR1: Drake London (81.3)
WR2: Olamide Zaccheaus (75.3)
WR3: KhaDarel Hodge (77.6)

The early returns on Drake London have been fantastic. He’s been excellent when given opportunities, looking like a future No. 1 receiver in the NFL. Even Zaccheaus and Hodge have played well in limited roles. It's just that the Falcons don’t throw the football very often.

Atlanta needs to add more speed to this group next offseason, but the play of their top three receivers has been better than expected.

PFF stats to know:

  • Quarterbacks have a 149.1 passer rating when targeting Zaccheaus, the highest in the NFL.
  • Drake London has yet to drop a pass in his NFL career (43 targets).

21. WASHINGTON COMMANDERS (Down 6)

WR1: Terry McLaurin (68.5)
WR2: Curtis Samuel (65.7)
WR3: Jahan Dotson (63.7)

Before Dotson went down with a hamstring injury, you could have made a case that this was one of the top 12 units in the league. Not only have they gotten great play from their top three receivers, but even Dyami Brown has made a number of big plays for Washington.

It’s still a really young and talented group, so that provides a lot of optimism going forward. The good news is that Taylor Heinicke seems more willing to throw the ball down the field, which helped McLaurin in a big way in Week 7. Don’t be surprised if he puts up big numbers over the next few weeks.

PFF stats to know:

  • Washington quarterbacks have a 41.7 passer rating when targeting Curtis Samuel, the lowest on the team.
  • Samuel’s average depth of target is 4.9 yards, the lowest in the NFL.
  • Terry McLaurin has forced seven missed tackles, seventh-best in the NFL.

22. CLEVELAND BROWNS (Down 2)

WR1: Amari Cooper (74.3)
WR2: Donovan Peoples-Jones (64.6)
WR3: David Bell (50.1)

Amari Cooper has been everything the Browns could have hoped for and more when they acquired him via trade this offseason. He is a perfect fit in the offense, already having a huge impact. The problem is that the Browns haven’t gotten enough from the receivers not named Cooper. Peoples-Jones has been fine, but he is a bit unreliable. Everyone else on the roster is grading out well below average this season.

PFF stats to know:

  • Donovan Peoples-Jones has eight contested catches this season, third-most in the NFL.
  • Amari Cooper has 24 first-down receptions, ninth-best in the NFL.

23. DENVER BRONCOS (Down 7)

WR1: Courtland Sutton (65.8)
WR2: Jerry Jeudy (66.7)
WR3: K.J. Hamler (54.9)

Russell Wilson is not playing well this season, but neither are the Denver receivers. They are still way too inconsistent from game to game, and no one has emerged as a viable No. 3 receiver. This group really misses Tim Patrick, who will miss the entire 2022 season with a knee injury. 

PFF stats to know:

  • Courtland Sutton and Jerry Jeudy have combined for six drops on 103 targets.
  • Of Jerry Jeudy’s 387 yards this season, 173 have come after the catch.

24. BALTIMORE RAVENS (Up 2)

WR1: Rashod Bateman (62.8)
WR2: Devin Duvernay (75.9)
WR3: Demarcus Robinson (55.8)

Bateman has stepped up in Year 2, but he’s been a little banged up this season. Duvernay leads the team in snaps, but this unit needs a better No. 3 option. Don’t be surprised if the Ravens look to the trade market to try to upgrade the No. 3 receiver spot, as Robinson, Tylan Wallace and James Proche just haven’t been good enough.

PFF stats to know:

  • Rashod Bateman is averaging 9.1 yards after the catch per reception, second-best in the NFL. 
  • However, Bateman is tied for the NFL lead in drops (five) despite just 27 targets on the season.
  • He has the highest drop percentage in the NFL (25%).

25. HOUSTON TEXANS (Down 4)

WR1: Brandin Cooks (63.3)
WR2: Nico Collins (73.4)
WR3: Chris Moore (55.7)

Nico Collins has officially made the leap in Year 2, but he’s now dealing with an injury that could cost him some time. Cooks has been fine, but the Texans haven’t gotten much from anyone else on the roster. This isn’t a bad wide receiver corps, but Houston could stand to add some more talent during the 2023 offseason.

PFF stats to know:

  • Brandin Cooks is tied for the NFL lead in drops (5).
  • Cooks is eighth in the NFL in drop percentage (15.2%).  
  • Nico Collins has the second-most contested catches in the league (9), trailing only Mike Williams (11). 

26. INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (Down 3)

WR1: Michael Pittman Jr. (73.7)
WR2: Alec Pierce (62.5)
WR3: Parris Campbell (61.5)

Pittman has been stellar for the Colts this season, and Pierce has shown flashes as a rookie. Even Parris Campbell has made a few plays, especially after the catch. But what will this unit look like with Sam Ehlinger at quarterback? That remains to be seen. The group hasn’t been awful this season, but it certainly hasn’t played above its head, either.

PFF stats to know:

  • Alec Pierce has three drops on 33 targets this season.
  • Parris Campbell has forced nine missed tackles this year, fourth-most in the NFL.
  • Michael Pittman Jr.’s average depth of target is 6.8 yards, 10th-lowest in the NFL.

27. GREEN BAY PACKERS (Down 3)

WR1: Allen Lazard (69.4)
WR2: Randall Cobb (79.9)
WR3: Romeo Doubs (56.7)

The concern for the Packers going into the year was that their receivers weren’t going to be good enough to form a top-10 offense. And while the receivers haven’t been great, they haven’t been awful, either. The ankle injury to Randall Cobb does hurt the Packers, as he was the most reliable receiver for Aaron Rodgers.

They also haven’t gotten anything from Christian Watson, who continues to miss time with a hamstring injury. And now that Allen Lazard is dealing with a shoulder injury, things could be getting even worse in Green Bay.

PFF stats to know:

  • Randall Cobb is averaging 7.7 yards after the catch per reception, fifth-best in the NFL.
  • Aaron Rodgers has a 114.6 passer rating when targeting Allen Lazard, which is the highest on the team.


28. JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS (Down 3)

WR1: Christian Kirk (65.2)
WR2: Zay Jones (71.1)
WR3: Marvin Jones Jr. (64.2)

The additions of Christian Kirk and Zay Jones have made this a much more respectable wide receiver corps. While it might not be the most dynamic unit in the league, it is functional and their skill sets work together well. But at some point, the Jaguars will need to add a true No. 1 option for Trevor Lawrence for the offense to really take off.

PFF stats to know:

  • Christian Kirk has 20 first-down receptions, the most on the team.
  • Marvin Jones and Zay Jones both have three contested catches on the season.

29. CAROLINA PANTHERS (Down 7)

WR1: D.J. Moore (68.9)
WR2: Shi Smith (48.6)
WR3: Terrace Marshall Jr. (64.7)

The trade of Robbie Anderson to the Cardinals has left this wide receiver group pretty bare. D.J. Moore is still a really good player, but Smith and Marshall have struggled. It might be time to start getting Laviska Shenault Jr. more involved once he is healthy. Otherwise, this is one of the least exciting groups in the NFL, outside of Moore.

PFF stats to know:

  • Shi Smith has the second-highest drop percentage (20.0%) in the NFL.
  • D.J Moore is averaging just 1.20 yards per route run, the lowest of his career.

30. TENNESSEE TITANS (Down 1)

WR1: Robert Woods (75.0)
WR2: Treylon Burks (65.0)
WR3: Nick Westbrook-Ikhine (64.7)

The acquisition of Robert Woods was one of the most underrated moves of the offseason. He is a perfect fit in Tennesee’s offense and provides stability at the receiver position. The Titans haven’t gotten a ton out of the rookie Burks this season, as he is currently on the injured reserve list. When he is healthy, there is a chance this group could move up into the teens rather quickly.

PFF stats to know:

  • Treylon Burks is averaging 6.0 yards after the catch per reception, 14th-highest in the NFL.
  • Neither Burks nor Robert Woods has forced a missed tackle yet this season

31. CHICAGO BEARS (Down 1)

WR1: Darnell Mooney (64.9)
WR2: Equanimeous St. Brown (64.4)
WR3: Dante Pettis (56.3)

The hope was that Mooney would take a big step forward in Year 3, but that hasn’t happened yet. Instead, you can make a case that he’s regressed since last year. St. Brown and Pettis are role players, and neither offers that much excitement in the offense. Rookie Velus Jones Jr. can’t even get on the field, which is a bit concerning for his long-term outlook.

PFF stats to know:

  • Darnell Mooney’s average depth of target is 15.3 yards, tied for seventh in the NFL.
  • Justin Fields has a 53.8 passer rating when targeting Equanimeous St. Brown, which is the eighth-lowest in the NFL.

32. NEW YORK GIANTS (No Change)

WR1: Darius Slayton (68.1)
WR2: David Sills V (55.9)
WR3: Wan’Dale Robinson (71.2)

The Giants have been decimated by injuries at receiver this season, as Kenny Golladay, Kadarius Toney and Sterling Shepard have played a combined 299 snaps on offense. The receivers just aren’t healthy, and the ones that are haven’t played well. The Giants are winning right now in spite of their wide receiver corps. 

PFF stats to know:

  • Darius Slayton’s average depth of target is 14.6 yards, 10th in the NFL. 
  • Giants quarterbacks have a 57.9 passer rating when targeting David Sills V (15 targets).
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