Antonio Brown has re-signed with the Bucs. That keeps intact one of the league’s best trios of wide receivers – and could make crowding an issue with Tampa Bay’s passing game.
Per reports, it’s a one-year deal worth at least $3.1 million, with another $3 million available in incentives. That looks like a pretty solid deal. Better, for example, than the Ravens paying $5 million for one year of Sammy Watkins, or the Lions giving $4 million to Tyrell Williams.
Brown is a legit third option. He would be one of the top 2 wide receivers on almost every other team. His presence will make it more difficult for Mike Evans and Chris Godwin to put up monster numbers.
Including the playoffs and setting aside a game he left early with an injury, Brown in his 10 full games last year caught 56 passes for 564 yards and 6 TDs. His best game came in Week 17, when Evans left early with a knee injury (elevating Brown into a more prominent role). If we set that one aside, Brown in his last eight full games (in weeks that Evans and Godwin were both playing) caught 38 passes for 385 yards and 4 TDs.
Injuries are always a factor, of course. Things change when Brown, Evans, Godwin or Tom Brady get hurt. But Brown seems to be in the mix for 80-90 catches, for maybe 1,000 yards and 8 TDs. Heading into this season, he’ll have had more opportunity to better learn the offense.
In the second half of last year, all three of these receivers were good, but none of them were right up in the top tier at the position. Tampa Bay in the second half of last season was the only team with three top-20 wide receivers (using PPR scoring).
The top 20 wide receivers for the second half of last season are listed below. I used the final eight games for each team. Three of these receivers will be with new teams in the upcoming season, and I’ve got them tagged with black dots.
|RECEIVING PRODUCTION, FINAL EIGHT GAMES|
|Davante Adams, G.B.||62||699||11.3||10||191.9|
|Stefon Diggs, Buff.||73||840||11.5||5||187.0|
|Tyreek Hill, K.C.||52||739||14.2||8||173.9|
|Justin Jefferson, Min.||54||773||14.3||4||155.3|
|• Marvin Jones, Det.||51||670||13.1||5||148.0|
|Diontae Johnson, Pitt.||57||613||10.8||4||142.3|
|DeAndre Hopkins, Ariz.||55||673||12.2||3||140.3|
|Mike Evans, T.B.||40||633||15.8||6||139.3|
|Calvin Ridley, Atl.||47||717||15.3||3||136.7|
|Allen Robinson, Chi.||52||619||11.9||3||131.9|
|A.J. Brown, Ten.||39||618||15.8||5||130.8|
|Chris Godwin, T.B.||40||561||14.0||5||126.1|
|Brandin Cooks, Hou.||44||640||14.5||3||126.0|
|Adam Thielen, Min.||37||445||12.0||7||123.5|
|JuJu Smith-Schuster, Pitt.||52||392||7.5||5||121.2|
|• Curtis Samuel, Car.||48||589||12.3||2||118.9|
|Antonio Brown, T.B.||45||483||10.7||4||117.3|
|T.Y. Hilton, Ind.||34||511||15.0||5||115.1|
|Robert Woods, LAR||53||500||9.4||2||115.0|
|• Corey Davis, Ten.||36||615||17.1||2||109.5|