Jaylen Waddle could be Miami Dolphins best WR in 5 years

Jaylen Waddle. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images)
Jaylen Waddle. (Photo by Mark Brown/Getty Images) /

The Miami Dolphins would be thrilled if Jaylen Waddle was still the playmaker they believe he is five years from now.

Jaylen Waddle is coming off an exceptional rookie season and now, his future is what we can look forward to. Injuries aside, Waddle could be taking ahold of the Miami Dolphins history books sooner rather than later.

Mark Clayton is one of the Dolphins’ all-time greats and he is only compared statistically to Mark Duper. The Dolphins’ great offenses of the mid-80s were electric with Marino picking and choosing which of the Marks Brothers to throw to.

Clayton and Duper set the all-time records in receiving yards and receptions. Clayton has more receptions, 550 to 511 for Duper while Duper has more yards receiving 8,869 to Clayton’s 8,643. Talk touchdowns and it’s Clayton (81), Nat Moore (74), and Duper (59).

Entering his 2nd NFL season, Waddle is of course, way down that all-time receiving list and isn’t going to take any top spots in 2022. Consider that Waddle has only six touchdowns so far.

For Waddle, it is about the long future. He is 7,854 yards away from Mark Duper’s yardage total. A lot would have to happen for him to reach that point and the biggest is a contract that awaits him three or four years from now. Even if he posts three or four consecutive 1,000-yard seasons, he is still 3,000 and change below Duper.

Receptions are a different story, however. In 2022, if Waddle can catch another 100 passes he would move from 50th all-time all the way up to 18th potentially surpassing Tony Martin who has 202.

If Waddle can catch a minimum of 80 passes, which is likely, over the next several years, he will move up the list very quickly. Clayton’s 550 receptions is a reachable mark. Considering that Waddle is only 446 receptions behind him, it is not out of the question that Waddle could match the all-time great by the end of his rookie contract if Miami picks up his 5th-year option.

Miami Dolphins
Mark Clayton (Photo by Focus on Sport/Getty Images) /

It would be very close but Waddle will likely need half of another season to pass Clayton and Duper. Doable? Yes, absolutely and the ride between now and then is going to be fun to watch.

Interestingly enough, there are a lot of fans and some in the media who are already looking at Tyreek Hill. Hill has quite the resume with 56 touchdowns, 479 receptions, and 6,630 yards. He comes to Miami already established, much like Paul Warfield was when the Dolphins traded with the Browns to bring him here.

While Hill has the NFL resume, he has yet to establish a statistic for Miami so even with what he brings along with him, he has to write his own Dolphins history.