2022 NFL Draft Do-Over: Re-Drafting Wide Receiver Class

There have been some great performances by rookie wide receivers this season in the NFL. Some started out strong and have maintained, some got out fast but have hit the typical rookie wall and others began slowly but have rapidly risen near the top of their class.

With approximately three-quarters of the season complete, I thought it would be a fun exercise to re-draft the rookie receivers. In other words, what receivers would land in the first round if the draft were held today, knowing what we know now?

For this exercise, we will only re-draft the six teams that actually took a receiver in the first round.

8. Falcons: Garrett Wilson

Statistics: 57 receptions, 790 yards, 4 TDs

Atlanta’s Original Pick: Drake London

I know this will raise a lot of eyebrows, but Wilson was the most NFL-ready receiver I had seen in a long time. His route running is so precise and abrupt, and he has some explosiveness and acceleration. He understands defenses too. He gets open, creates separation and high-points the ball. Wilson does everything you want a No. 1 guy to do. Wilson has come in ready, so I’m moving him to the head of the class.

10. Jets: Chris Olave

Statistics: 60 receptions, 887 yards, 3 TDs

New York’s Original Pick: Garrett Wilson

The Jets are going to take Wilson’s college partner in crime, Olave. I know: It’s an Ohio State 1-2 punch at the top, but that’s just the way it is. Olave is going to get a lot of votes for Rookie of the Year with what he’s doing in New Orleans. He leads the Saints in receptions and yards on passes thrown by Andy Dalton, Jameis Winston and Taysom Hill.

11. Saints: George Pickens

New Orleans’ Original Pick: Chris Olave

Pickens is the freakiest receiver in this group. I know they all have different skill sets, but he is probably my favorite among all of them because he can stretch the field, has great hands and can make all kinds of acrobatic catches. I’m all about Pickens.

12. Lions: Christian Watson

Statistics: 25 receptions, 401 yards, 7 TDs

Detroit’s Original Pick: Jameson Williams

Yes, move this second-rounder up to No. 12. We all have seen what Watson has blossomed into. Could you imagine seeing him alongside Amon-Ra St. Brown? Whatever you think about Jared Goff, he’s going to put the ball down the field and give his receivers opportunities. I love what Watson is emerging into after a slow start because of trust issues with his quarterback and injuries.

16. Commanders: Treylon Burks

Statistics: 25 receptions, 359 yards, 1 TD

Washington’s Original Pick: Jahan Dotson

Burks has been a stud. He has a similar body build to A.J. Brown, who was essentially replaced by Burks in Tennessee. He hasn’t had a lot of opportunities because the Titans are a run-first team, and he only gets the leftovers. Plus, he spent four weeks on injured reserve in October with a foot injury and suffered a concussion on Sunday in a loss to Browns’ Eagles.

18. Titans: Skyy Moore

Statistics: 17 receptions, 205 yards, 0 TD

Tennessee’s Original Pick: Treylon Burks

He’s probably not a great fit for the Titans, but he’s a receiver you have to take here because he’s the one who’s been starting to show up and make plays, and you can put him in a lot of positions. Call me biased because I went to Western Michigan like Moore, but the Broncos just do it right when it comes to receivers. He is a well-rounded receiver who is just now starting to get more opportunities with the Chiefs. I love his upside with them.

A caveat to my choices: This is based on what I’ve seen, and so before you all go crazy and ask why I left Jameson Williams out, I considered that he has only played in one game – last week and with a very limited snap count. 

Go easy on me, and if you still have a problem, hit me up on Twitter @GregJennings

Greg Jennings is a former NFL wide receiver who played for the Packers, Vikings and Dolphins from 2006 to 2015. A two-time Pro Bowl player, Jennings was a member of the Packers’ Super Bowl XLV championship team and is inducted into the team’s Hall of Fame. 

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