No Clear Standout Wide Receivers from 2012 Draft

By Chris Malumphy

Of the 34 wide receivers drafted in 2012, only three exceeded 800 receiving yards in their rookie season and only four had as many as 50 catches. While several of the rookies showed promise, no one was a clear standout. To keep things in perspective, 800 yards averages out to just 50 yards per game and 50 receptions averages to 3.1 catches per game, certainly not awe-inspiring figures.

Justin Blackmon (865), T.Y. Hilton (861) and Josh Gordon (805) gained the most yards receiving. Blackmon (64), Kendall Wright (64), T.Y. Hilton (50) and Josh Gordon (50) caught the most passes. Hilton (7), Blackmon (5) and Gordon (5) scored the most touchdowns.

Former Baylor teammates Wright and Gordon totalled 114 receptions for 1,431 yards and 9 touchdowns, which nears 20% of the total production of the 34 wide receivers drafted in 2012.

There were 33 wide receivers selected during the primary draft, led by Justin Blackmon of Oklahoma who was taken by the Jacksonville Jaguars with the fifth choice. Another wide-receiver, Josh Gordon from Baylor was drafted by the Cleveland Browns with a 2nd round choice in the Supplemental Draft. Blackmon led all first year draftees with 865 yards receiving and tied fellow 1st rounder Kendall Wright for the lead in receptions with 64. Wright was drafted from Baylor by the Tennessee Titans with the 20th pick in the 1st round. He was the third wide receiver drafted.

Four wide receivers were selected in the 1st round. The top three were saddled with poor or mediocre quarterbacks: Justin Blackmon (Blaine Gabbert and Chad Henne), Michael Floyd (Kevin Kolb, John Skelton, Ryan Lindley, Brian Hoyer) and Kendall Wright (Jake Locker, Matt Hasselbeck). While none of the three had standout seasons, they each showed enough promise to give hope that they could excel given better quarterbacking. The fourth 1st rounder, A.J. Jenkins missed the entire season due to injury.

Each of the five receivers drafted in the 2nd round disappointed: Brian Quick (Rams), Stephen Hill (Jets), Alshon Jeffery (Bears), Ryan Broyles (Lions), Rueben Randle (Giants). None caught as many as 25 passes or gained even 400 yards receiving, a measley 25 per game.

Perhaps the most pleasant surprise among the wide receivers drafted in 2012 was T.Y. Hilton, taken by the Indianapolis Colts with the 29th pick in the 3rd round. Hilton led the first year draftees with 7 receptions for touchdowns, was 2nd in receiving yards with 861, only 4 behind Blackmon, and tied Josh Gordon with 50 catches, trailing only Blackmon and Wright, who each had 64. The Rams' Chris Givens, a 4th round pick, also had a good season with 42 catches for 698 yards, easily outproducing teammate Brian Quick who was drafted two rounds earlier.

Wide Receivers Drafted in 2012
Name Team Round Pick Player College Team Rushes Yards Avg TD Rec Yards Avg TD
Justin BlackmonJaguars155Oklahoma StateJaguars22311.506486513.55
Michael FloydCardinals11313Notre DameCardinals        4556212.52
Kendall WrightTitans12020BaylorTitans144.00646269.84
A.J. Jenkins49ers13030Illinois                  
Brian QuickRams2133Appalachian StateRams        1115614.22
Stephen HillJets21143Georgia TechJets        2125212.03
Alshon JefferyBears21345South CarolinaBears        2436715.33
Ryan BroylesLions22254OklahomaLions        2231014.12
Rueben RandleGiants23163Louisiana StateGiants        1929815.73
Devier PoseyTexans3568Ohio StateTexans1-3-3.0068714.50
T.J. GrahamBills3669North Carolina StateBills155.003132210.41
Mohamed SanuBengals32083RutgersBengals5153.00161549.64
T.Y. HiltonColts32992Florida InternationalColts5295.805086117.27
Chris GivensRams4196Wake ForestRams3124.004269816.63
Travis BenjaminBrowns45100Miami (FL)Browns66611.001829816.62
Joe AdamsPanthers49104ArkansasPanthers3134.30177.00
Devon WylieChiefs412107Fresno StateChiefs        6538.80
Jarius WrightVikings423118ArkansasVikings2115.502231014.12
Keshawn MartinTexans426121Michigan StateTexans45313.3010858.51
Nick ToonSaints427122Wisconsin                  
Greg ChildsVikings439134Arkansas                  
Danny CoaleCowboys517152Virginia Tech                  
Marvin JonesBengals531166CaliforniaBengals34715.701820111.21
Juron CrinerRaiders533168ArizonaRaiders        161519.41
B.J. CunninghamDolphins613183Michigan State                  
Marvin McNuttEagles624194Iowa                  
Tommy StreeterRavens628198Miami (FL)                  
LaVon BrazillColts636206OhioColts        1118616.91
Rishard MatthewsDolphins720227NevadaDolphins        1115113.70
Toney ClemonsSteelers724231ColoradoJaguars        34113.70
Jeremy EbertPatriots728235Northwestern                  
Junior HemingwayChiefs731238Michigan                  
Jordan WhiteJets737244Western MichiganJets        11313.00
Josh GordonBrowns2S  BaylorBrowns        5080516.15
Note: Josh Gordon was selected in the second round of the Supplemental Draft.