Digging Into The Stats: DeAndre Hopkins

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DeAndre Hopkins has landed in a fantastic situation for another breakout season. Of course the quarterback isn’t ideal at all with Brian Hoyer and Ryan Mallett competing for a game managing quarterback job. Great wide receivers have been able to overcome bad quarterback play before. For example, Andre Johnson had All-Pro seasons with a variety of bad quarterbacks. Josh Gordon has been great with the worst NFL quarterbacks.

What makes 2015 so exciting for DeAndre ‘Nuk’ Hopkins is the volume he is inheriting. The coaching staff and front office realized they hit a home run with Nuk after his rookie season. Last year was merrily a transition from being Andre Johnson’s counterpart to Andre Johnson’s replacement. Nothing against Andre Johnson at all, but why pay someone that much money to be the second best wide receiver on a run first offense?

DeAndre Hopkins actually outperformed his mentor all across the board last year. He emerged as an explosive playmaker with the best hands in the entire league. He has been going to camps with the best route running coach in all of football alongside Antonio Brown and his hard work paid off. As a sophomore in an offense led by Ryan Fitzpatrick, Ryan Mallett, and Case Keenum with a rookie coach, DeAndre Hopkins finished with a 76/1210/6 stat line.

More impressively, he did it in only 127 targets. His 15.9 yards per reception was 8th in the NFL but only T.Y. Hilton finished top 10 with a higher competition percentage. His efficiency led him to just missing top 10 status in receiving yards but it needs to be pointed out the differences in quarterbacks throwing the balls to the top 11 leaders; Ben Roethlisberger, Peyton Manning, Matt Ryan, Aaron Rodgers, Peyton Manning again, Andrew Luck, Matthew Stafford, Tony Romo, Nick Foles, Eli Manning, and Aaron Rodgers again. And then there is Ryan Fitzpatrick throwing to Nuk.

Next: How DeAndre Stacks Up With Top 10