There are a number of questions surrounding the current crop of top-paid wide receivers. The obvious question is who is the most valuable and how their AAV compares with their peers. We will look at Kirk, Jones and Adams. These players all just finished their career seasons. But what do they have in common? We look at their AAV, how much they are worth, and whether they are worthy of being called the top paid wide receivers in the NFL.
Kirk is coming off a career season
Christian Kirk, a former Texas A&M wide receiver, has been one of the most intriguing prospects this offseason. He set career records for both yards and receptions last season. In recent years, he has also seen an increase in his paydirt production. He has recieved at least seven touchdown passes in each of his four seasons in the NFL. Kirk’s versatility and ability to track the football in the bucket make him a desirable option for teams looking for a wide receiver to fit their offense.
The Arizona Cardinals signed Christian Kirk as a second-round pick last March, and the two sides have worked well together. Pederson is a successful coach, and Press Taylor is an extremely effective offensive coordinator. The two signed a four-year, $72 million contract with Kirk, with $37 million guaranteed and a $20 million signing bonus. If Kirk meets all incentives, his contract could reach $84 million.
Kirk’s production has improved every year, but he reached his peak last year. He topped his career highs in receiving yards and touchdowns with nine82 yards and eight touchdowns. He also played every game in the league this year, a feat he’d never been able to do before. Kirk’s production has increased dramatically with the retirements of DeAndre Hopkins, Larry Fitzgerald, and he has the potential for becoming a legitimate No. 1 receiver, or at the very least a solid 1B alongside Marvin Jones Jr.
Aside from his talent and versatility as a wide receiver, Kirk is also an effective return specialist, which could be a huge selling point for teams that need a receiver. Moreover, his versatility may also translate to a deep threat role for an offense lacking depth. Adding Kirk could be a good move for the Dolphins. It would be a smart move to add another wide receiver at the slot if Tua Tagovailoa is the quarterback. If Kirk is able to play inside and outside, it will open up many options in the future.
Jones is coming off a great career season
Julio Jones just completed a stellar season as an NFL wide receiver. The league’s highest-paid wide receiver, Jones is 29 years old. Jones had 99 receptions for 1,394 yards and six touchdowns last year. He is a different type of athlete than most, which gives him a unique edge. Jones’ numbers were positive last season, but he missed some touchdown chances due to Eddie Lacy.
Despite his injury history, Jones has been made a reliable wide receiver by the Atlanta Falcons. He missed only seven games last season and is expected to play every game this year. Jones could struggle to break out from his injury mold because of the Titans’ offensive, which has many playmakers. Jones has been a consistent receiver with impressive receiving yards over the past decade, even though he may not have scored many touchdowns.
Jones was a successful college football player before he was an NFL wide receiver. While at Saraland, he was a star quarterback who was also a member of the basketball team for one season. In 2001, he was a part-time starter, but he was a starter for the next four years. He led the Pointers to victory over the Ole Miss team at Oxford in 2002. This set a new NCAA record in terms of overtimes in a football match. They lost to the University of Oklahoma later in the season, which was a seven-five finish.
In addition to his age and position, Jones’ production was impressive last year. He averaged 82.0 passer rating on passes targeted to him, which was a career-high. In addition to being a great weapon, Jones did not depend on Rodgers for his success. He’s also one of the most valuable free-agent wide receivers in the market, and it’s likely the team will give him the maximum contract.
Adams is the highest-paid wide receiver in terms AAV
Ryan Adams has made a case for why he should become the highest paid wide receiver in the NFL. The former Oklahoma star has put up monster numbers in recent seasons and is currently the 18th highest paid wide receiver in the NFL by average annual value. Adams’ current deal pays him $14.5 million per season, which is an absolute steal for a Green Bay Packers wide receiver. Despite his recent contract extensions, he is not yet the highest paid wide receiver in terms of AAV.
His salary is high, but there are still questions about his value. Adams’ trade value is only important if he helps the Raiders make the playoffs, which is unlikely. Given the QB situation and current roster, the Raiders’ trade seems fair. However, it is not clear if Adams’ trade will benefit the Packers long-term. Regardless of the future value of Adams, his signing sends a strong message about the franchise.
The Packers are projected to be over the salary cap in 2022, which puts them $38.7 million over it. This is the 2022 projected salary cap. It also does not include the practice squad, draft class, in-season spending, free agents’ contracts, and veteran cuts. It is possible, but not guaranteed, that Adams’ AAV will be paid by the Packers.
Hill’s contract is worth more than Adams. The contract is worth $24.1 million for the first three years, and $45.6 million for the final year. Adams will be the highest-paid wide receiver in terms AAV and will earn over $45 million in the future. The Dolphins could make Hill redundant and owe only $5 million against the cap. But if the Raiders decide that he is not worth the money, the Miamis will be stuck with him.
Kupp is criminally underpaid
Cooper Kupp is currently in negotiations for a new contract with Rams. He’s not allegedly skipping voluntary offseason exercises to negotiate his contract. Nevertheless, the wide receiver is making less than half of the top wide receiver, Tyreek Hill, and should demand at least $20 million per year. At that rate, he would be the 10th highest-paid receiver in the NFL.
Cooper’s talents are something many players would love, but it’s difficult to see Cooper’s future in the NFL without him being a star. Cooper Kupp was the NFL’s top wide receiver and he brought three times the value to the NFL than the highest-paid wide receiver of 2021. Compared to the highest-paid wide receiver in 2021, Cooper Kupp produced far more value than Tyler Lockett. It’s time he received the highest compensation among wide receivers.
Cooper Kupp’s performance with the Rams is a good example of this. The versatile wide receiver is on track to become the first 2,000-yard wide receiver in NFL history and break the single-season receiving record. He may not reach the goal of 18 touchdowns, but he’s on pace to break those records. He is now on the verge to win the Triple Crown. And while Kupp’s atypical contract is still not enough to reward the incredible performance, it’s still worth highlighting the incredible growth of a talented young player.
Cooper Kupp is having one of his best seasons in the NFL. He was named MVP in Super Bowl LVI. Kupp finished with eight catches for 92 yards and two touchdowns in the game. Kupp was also the NFL’s leader in receiving yards and touchdowns. He’s also a former Eastern Washington standout. Kupp is an asset to any team. Why is Kupp so underpaid
Golladay could be a Washington Redskins target
In free agency, Kenny Golladay may be an interesting target for the Washington Football Team. The Washington team is looking to add a second wide receiver in the offseason after benching Dwayne Haskins. The team has plenty of cap space, but they will likely sign Marcus Mariota and then trade for another player. A second receiver may be a more attractive option for Washington because Golladay has proven his worth in an offense.
A move to the Redskins would be a great addition for their passing game. Golladay would form a dangerous duo with Parker, and the team would have some extra cap space to add a star. Golladay’s presence will relieve McLaurin of the pressure and allow receivers more one-on-1 targets. Golladay would also fit with the New England Patriots, who have struggled to find a proven wide receiver.
The Bears may not offer Golladay a contract but the Redskins might try to get the Chicago native for a low price. The Bears do not have cap space to sign Golladay, but they can certainly clear some salary to acquire another player. Golladay has played against the Chicago Bears six times. He was third in yards before receptions and yards per reception in this season’s NFL.
Although the Redskins still have a questionable quarterback situation, they do have a solid core of wide receivers. With Logan Thomas, Golladay can complement them with his speed and agility. Golladay could also serve as a safety net for a young quarterback. McLaurin and Golladay are great fit for Washington. This combination would create a fearsome passing attack.