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Plenty of NFL wide receivers can fly down the field and catch footballs, especially in this era of offensive-minded football, and one of those young men will become the 2022 receiving yards champion, a title that last year’s winner Cooper Kupp is predicted to take once again.
It’s mostly wide receivers on this list of favorites including Vikings’ veteran playmaker Justin Jefferson and Bengals’ young deep threat Ja’Marr Chase, but the Chiefs’ tight end Travis Kelce is also here, a man who is helping to change the way his position is perceived and played.
Here we take closer looks at the odds and predictions of the top candidates for posting the most receiving yards during the 2022 season, and we briefly analyze their chances to win this coveted NFL award.
Good luck – win big!
For the five seasons he has played in the NFL, LA Rams WR Cooper Kupp has been putting on a route-running clinic as he becomes one of the top pass catchers in the league, the 29-year old’s ability to battle for balls and evade tackles becoming legendary among players and fans.
Last season, the 6’ 2” 208 pound Kupp led the league in four major categories – total receptions (145), total receiving yards (1,947), receiving TDs (16), and receiving yards per game (114.5) – all part of his best year in the NFL by far, especially when you add the Super Bowl win to that.
This season, Rams QB Matthew Stafford is more than settled in and he and Kupp can continue to evolve their special connection, this year a challenge to follow up such a mind blowing season, but the NFL requires a short memory when it comes to the good and the bad.
The oddsmakers expect Minnesota Vikings WR Justin Jefferson to shine in his third NFL season, the second favorite on this list who has already posted two 1,400+ yard seasons, last year with 1,616 total receiving yards, second only to season award winner Cooper Kupp.
Jefferson is only 23 years old and the 6’ 1” 195 pound speedster (he runs the 40 yard dash in 4.43 seconds) is a valid deep threat for QB Kirk Cousins, last season the two connecting 108 times off 167 targets for 10 touchdowns while averaging over 95 receiving yards per game.
Yet another former LSU player to make it in the NFL, Jefferson is fortunate to line up with playmaker Adam Thielen and RB Dalvin Cook, all part of a receiving group that ranked in the league’s top-11 last season, room for growth that could help Jefferson earn this award.
Third on the list of potential Most Receiving Yards candidates for 2022 is Cincinnati Bengals WR Ja’Marr Chase, now in his second pro season after spending his rookie year helping his team make it to the Super Bowl for the first time in decades where they lost to the LA Rams.
Chase is one of those former LSU playmakers as is his QB Joe Burrow and the two used to connect with each other on the field at the college level, a relationship that didn’t miss a beat at the next level, last season the two posting 81 receptions for 1,455 yards and 13 touchdowns.
Now that defenses have had an entire offseason to watch film on Chase and game plan his demise, expect him to struggle at first as he and HC Zac Taylor and OF Brian Callahan figure out how to counter those moves and put Chase in a position to earn this prestigious award.
The tight ends are few and far between on the list of Most Receiving Yards candidates, but Kansas City Chiefs star TE Travis Kelce is top among them, fourth on this list of frontrunners due to his ability to get open and catch the ball and then make it difficult to get tackled.
It’s Kelce’s size – 6’ 5” and 260 pounds – and his relative speed – he runs a 4.61 second 40-yard dash – and his veteran football IQ that makes him one of QB Patrick Mahomes’ favorite targets, last year with 92 receptions off 134 targets for 1,125 yards and 9 touchdowns.
One possible reason Kelce is high on this list of potential winners is he and the Chiefs will be playing without deep threat WR Tyreek Hilton who is now with the Miami Dolphins, a chance for Kelce to be targeted more often assuming the double teams don’t kill those opportunities.
Dallas Cowboys WR Cee Dee Lamb has only been in the NFL for two seasons now, but he makes the top-5 of this list of potential Most Receiving Yards Award winners, the 23-year old former Oklahoma star and Consensus All-American who made the Pro Bowl last season.
That was based off Lamb’s 2021 production for his NFC East Champion Cowboys after playing in 16 games all season, the 6’ 2” 197 pound speedster (4.5 second 40-yard dash) posted 79 catches off 120 targets for 1,102 yards and 6 TDs with his QB Dak Prescott who is still healthy.
Lamb is expected to have another excellent season in 2022 lining up alongside talented WR Michael Gallup and pass-catching TE Dalton Schultz, a year that could be made even better if star RB Zeke Elliott can return to prior form and give the pass game a solid counterbalance.
In 2021, Los Angeles Rams WR Cooper Kupp won the NFL’s Most Receiving Yards honors, and his team would go on to play the Cincinnati Bengals in Super Bowl LVI and win that game by a field goal, 23-20, a matchup in which Kupp caught 8 balls for 92 yards and 2 TDs.The year before that in 2020, veteran WR Stefon Diggs won it in his first season playing with the Buffalo Bills, and the first season to ever keep track of total receptions was in 1932 when the New York Giants Ray Flaherty caught the football for 350 total yards during that season.The Green Bay Packers' famous WR Don Hutson led the league in receiving yards seven times during his career, the most of any player, with San Francisco 49ers WR Jerry Rice in second for that record with six times as the league’s receiving yards leader.
A nationwide panel of fifty members of the AP who cover the NFL on a regular basis selects the winner of the NFL Most Receiving Yards award at the end of the season before the playoffs.The league will announce the winner at the NFL Honors Presentation, which is held the night before the Super Bowl is played.This season, the presentation will happen on Saturday, February 11, 2023, and as usual, it will not be televised for the public, but chances are the names of the winners will leak out so keep checking back for all the latest news and updates.
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Mike Lukas is a retired standup comedian turned freelance writer now living in Dallas, Texas, originally from Cleveland, Ohio. His love for the game of football and all things Cleveland Browns turned Mike into a pro blogger years ago. Now Mike enjoys writing about all thirty-two NFL teams, hoping to help football gamblers gain a slight edge in their pursuit of the perfect wager. Email: [email protected]More info on Mike Lukas
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