The Top 10 NFL Wide Receivers For 2021

Stoney Keeley continues his look at the NFL as the 2021 season approaches. Today, we're looking at the top 10 NFL wide receivers.

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It’s summertime offseason content time! As the season approaches, I’m going to be taking a look at the landscape of the NFL, position by position, over the course of the next several weeks. We’ll be talking about the who’s who of the NFL in our own little version of the NFL Network’s “Top 100 Players” bit they do every year. Up next, we’re talking about the top 10 NFL wide receivers for 2021!

Alrighty, I’ve torn through the coaching ranks, and now it’s time to get into a sexy position (that’s what she said). I’m starting off with a bang looking at perhaps the most explosive position on the football field: wide receiver. What is my scientific formula for separating the top 10 receivers? I’ll tell you free of charge because that’s the kind of guy I am – it’s simple, it’s called I just look at the top receivers in the game and ask who I’d want to build around at the position. It’s a gut feeling – I’m like the Tennessee Titans of this shit…who needs a real analytics department? What did you expect? This is SoBros Network. Anyway, I think there’s a really good crop of young receivers in the NFL right now that could be leading to a new boom era of the position in the future. It was awfully hard to cut guys like Calvin Ridley, DK Metcalf, Terry McLaurin, and DJ Moore from this list. It feels like there’s a lot more receiving talent in the NFL now than there has been in a long, long time. So, let’s get to it.

The Top 10 NFL Wide Receivers For 2021

10. Amari Cooper, Dallas Cowboys – Some busted ass quarterback play and Cooper still tallied 1,114 yards. That’s one of the most impressive performances of 2020 that we don’t really talk about. There may be some younger guys coming for this spot, but I still like Cooper as one of the most polished receivers in the league. With a healthy Dak Prescott, he should go back to lighting it up.

9. Justin Jefferson, Minnesota Vikings – Jefferson made a splash right away, and had a legitimate argument to win 2020’s Offensive Rookie of the Year honors. He and AJ Brown certainly look like the future of the position. Jefferson was 3rd among receivers in 2020 with 1,400 yards, and quickly ascended to one of the must-watch receivers in the league.

8. Allen Robinson, Chicago Bears – Robinson is coming off back-to-back 1,000+-yard seasons for the first time in his career, as he seems to have really hit his stride with the Chicago Bears. Robinson was 9th in the league with 1,250 yards, and should see a decent up tic in production with a boost in quarterback play. We don’t even really know who the Bears quarterback is going to be but it’ll definitely be an upgrade from Mitchell Trubisky.

7. Tyreek Hill, Kansas City Chiefs – Hill is the type of player that strikes fear into the hearts of opposing defenses. You have to account for where he is on every single play, or else he’ll make you pay. He’s fast, shifty, and explosive. I wouldn’t necessarily say he has the most complete game of any wide receiver on this list, but the attention he commands definitely makes him one of the best in the game.

6. Michael Thomas, New Orleans Saints – Some things change. Some things remain the same, like me ranking Michael Thomas way lower than most of the national guys have him. I just think that being dynamic has to count for something and that’s one of the things that separates Thomas from the rest of this crop of receivers – he’s just not as explosive as the top five on this list. That said, you can’t deny his ability as a pure catch machine that is arguably the best route runner in the league.

5. A.J. Brown, Tennessee Titans – He’s like Derrick Henry playing wide receiver, and you can call me a homer all you want (Hi, I’m Stoney and I cover the Tennessee Titans for SoBros Network in case you have no idea who I am and just found this post on Google), but I’m ready to anoint Brown as one of the best receivers in the game. He has one of the most complete skillsets at the position – he can rack up big plays, he can make any catch, and he’s as physical as it gets. Among receivers with at least 800 snaps, only Cooper Kupp and Demarcus Robinson had better run-blocking grades per Pro Football Focus, which also gave Brown the third highest overall grade among receivers. Let’s put his name in the elite conversation.

4. Mike Evans, Tampa Bay Buccaneers – A “down year” for Mike Evans still netted 1,006 yards, as Evans made history by becoming the first receiver in NFL history to start his career with SEVEN consecutive thousand-yard seasons. His 13 touchdowns was a career best, and there’s no sign of the guy slowing down. I don’t care that a lot of people are going to consider this a reach. Evans has that trust factor at the position you just can’t manufacture. He’s still one of the best in the game.

3. Stefon Diggs, Buffalo Bills – Diggs cemented his elite status by switching teams and still doing numbers. His addition was huge for that Bills offense, and he finished 2020 as the leading receiver in the NFL with 1,535 yards. That mark was comfortably better than 2nd place Travis Kelce’s 1,416. He is one of the most explosive play-makers and deep threats in the league.

2. DeAndre Hopkins, Arizona Cardinals – Hopkins has long been one of my favorite receivers in the NFL to watch. He may have the best hands in the league – the dude is so good at the point of the catch, and can haul in some real circus passes. He’s got a complete game that I’m not sure has been appreciated throughout his career. Another thing we don’t appreciate about Hopkins: he’s only missed two starts his entire career. He was third in the league with 1,407 receiving yards in 2020, his 4th straight thousand-yard season, and the 6th of his eight-year career. He’s easily one of the best.

1. Davante Adams, Green Bay Packers – This is the first time since I’ve been writing these top 10s that someone not named DeAndre Hopkins or Julio Jones is at the top of my list, but Adams has had one of the biggest come-ups in the NFL over the last several seasons. Not that it means a damn thing to be ranked on a list on SoBros Network dot com – I’m just saying, if you can’t recognize how Adams has developed into one of if not the most complete wide receivers in the game, then personally, I think you’re insane. He was the security blanket for League MVP in 2020 as the best red zone threat in the NFL, and posted 1,374 receiving yards, good for fifth in the league. Most impressive were his 18 touchdowns. Pro Football Focus has Adams listed as the highest graded receiver of 2020. I have no problem saying Adams has arrived as the best receiver in the league.

OTHER 2021 NFL TOP 10S

Stoney Keeley is the Editor in Chief of The SoBros Network, and a Dogs Playing Poker on velvet connoisseur. He is a strong supporter of Team GSD, #BeBetter, and ‘Minds right, asses tight.’ “Big Natural” covers the Tennessee Titans, Nashville, Yankee Candle, and a whole wealth of nonsense. Follow on Twitter @StoneyKeeley

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