Julio Jones has groomed himself through hard work into a physical specimen in the NFL. Ever since coming out of high school, Jones has failed to disappoint. He flourished in his three years at the University of Alabama and has become a Pro-Bowl receiver at the NFL level. Last year, Jones was 3rd in the NFL in receptions, receiving yards and yards after catch (Jones led the NFC in all categories). Only Antonio Brown and Demaryius Thomas put up better numbers.
Jones’ 2014 was spectacular, but Falcons fans could be in for a whole different beast in 2015. Jones has been quoted saying he is “more muscular, faster” heading into this season. He is now over a year removed from foot surgery that sidelined him for most of the 2013 season and is supposedly in the best shape of his life. Jones claims to have an “extra gear” for 2015, and barring any unfortunate injuries, he could have the best year of his career.
The NFL is loaded with young talented receivers, with Jones being among them, and a lot of the numbers do not tell the whole story. Great receivers like Calvin Johnson struggled in 2014 because of a combination of injuries and poor quarterback play. The predictions are assuming all the wide receivers are healthy and taking into account their individual situations.
2015 Top 10 Wide Receiver Stat Predictions
10. Randall Cobb
1,307 receiving yards
9. T.Y. Hilton
1,313 receiving yards
8. A.J Green
7. Dez Bryant
6. Jordy Nelson
5. Demaryius Thomas
1,535 receiving yards
4. Odell Beckam Jr.
1,557 receiving yards
3. Julio Jones
1,657 receiving yards
2. Antonio Brown
1. Calvin Johnson
1,852 receiving yards
I have Jones in for a monster year in which he will show off this extra gear he has. Jones mentioned he will be better going down the field and few quarterbacks throw a better deep ball than Matt Ryan. New offensive coordinator, Kyle Shanahan, will learn one thing quickly: Get the ball in the hands of #11. Jones will have another Pro-Bowl year and could lead the NFL in receiving in 2015.
As for the two other guys on the list in front of Jones, Calvin Johnson is no doubt the best receiver in the NFL today. He has been plagued with nagging injuries over the last couple of seasons, but I expect him to stay healthy and return to being one of the best overall players in the NFL. Antonio Brown also landed in front of Jones on the list. Brown led the league in receiving last season and there are no signs of him slowing down. He is in the prime of his career, and with Leveon Bell being suspended the first part of the season, Brown will likely have huge stat lines in the early weeks.
After Jones, Odell Beckam Jr. will be spectacular again this season. He took over the NFL in with his spectacular catches last season. Check out some of these highlights from last season:
Yes, he will be that good again this upcoming season, book it.
Dez Bryant comes in at number 7, which might be surprising to many, but it should not be. Bryant is one of the best receivers in the league, but has only finished in the top 10 in receiving twice and has never finished in the top 5. The Cowboys also had a tendency to rely on their running game last season and it worked out pretty well, expect that to continue.