The Miami Dolphins boast two standout wide receivers but the play of Jaylen Waddle may be the most overlooked in the entire NFL.
Waddle and his globally popular “Waddle dance” is ranked currently 25th in the NFL in receptions. On the surface, one would think, yeah, that isn’t all that impressive. Not when you consider the fact that Tyreek Hill has 96 and Stefon Diggs has 91 or that Justin Jefferson has 88. Yes, Waddle has only 57 receptions.
The 57 puts him tied with Josh Palmer of the Chargers. He is behind Chris Olave (60) and fellow Alabama alumni DeVonta Smith who has 61. So why would I consider this impressive? Well, sometimes it’s about what you do with the ball when you get it that really matters.
While Dolphins fans wonder if Tyreek Hill will hit 2,000 yards this year, he needs to average 125 over the last five games, Jaylen Waddle and his 57 receptions have him sitting just four spots behind Hill in receiving yards.
Hill has 1,379 yards on the year with Jefferson at 1,277. Diggs has 1,202 yards and Davante Adams has 1,176 yards. Those are the only four players with more than 1,000 yards on the season.
Waddle? Well, the youngster should pass the 1K mark this week against the Chargers. Waddle sits at 972 yards, just 28 yards shy of 1,000. Behind him, tight end Travis Kelce who the media continually raves about has 77 receptions for 968 yards.
Waddle’s receptions might be low but he has made the most of his opportunities. The fact he is still in the top five despite having one of the lower reception numbers is, actually, quite impressive.
Consider that names like CeeDee Lamb (69), A.J. Brown (61), and even Christian McCaffrey (66) have more catches but far less yardage.
Waddle is that good and while he may not be leading the league in receptions, something he did last season as a rookie, he more than makes up for it by making his receptions…count.