The Myth That Is Big Money Receivers

The Myth That Is Big Money Receivers

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Photo Via Miami Sun Sentinel

Torrey Smith, Dez Bryant, Jeremy Maclin, and Randall Cobb have all signed large free agent deals this offseason. In recent memory other receivers such as Mike Wallace, Emmanuel Sanders, Greg Jennings, Eric Decker, and AJ Green have all been paid with lucrative deals as well. While the value of these contracts can be and will continue to be debated, one thing is for certain: The recipe for success in the NFL rarely includes expensive, top of the market receivers on large contracts.

The New England Patriots recently won Super Bowl 49 without having a receiver on their roster eclipse the six million dollar mark, less than half of what Calvin Johnson makes. The two receivers who went over 100 yards in the super bowl (Chris Matthews + Julian Edelman) make roughly 5 million dollars combined. The team who narrowly lost to New England, Seattle, was on the books for roughly 2 million dollars combined between Jermaine Kearse and Doug Baldwin, their two starting receivers.

While having a franchise quarterback in place does drastically help, the Seahawks and Patriots continued success has shown us that it there is more value in paying the guys who defend the passes as opposed to the ones catching them. Both Seattle and New England got to the super bowl with stellar pass defense and loaded, expensive secondaries that included 25 million dollars in combined 2014 salary for Darrelle Revis and Richard Sherman.

In 2015 teams with Dez Bryant, AJ Green, Larry Fitzgerald, Demaryius Thomas, Jeremy Maclin, Mike Wallace, and Vincent Jackson won a combined total of one playoff game. The best active receivers to win a ring includes a modest list of Julian Edelman, Reggie Wayne, Marques Colston, and Victor Cruz.

Large contracts for explosive receivers may put fans in the crowd, they just don’t hang banners on the wall. NFL teams entering free agency should do themselves a favor and spend less time worrying about who is catching balls and instead allocate time and resources into securing guys who can disrupt the passing game.

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