Atlanta Falcons’ star wideout Julio Jones is entering his 10th NFL season in 2020 and bigger things are still on the horizon for him. 1,151 receiving yards—that’s all Jones needs to make NFL history this season.
If the seven-time Pro Bowler reaches that number in receiving yards, he will surpass Jerry Rice’s (13,275 yards) for the most receiving yards through a player’s first 10 seasons in NFL history.
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Jones Expected to Recieve Beyond 1,500 Yards
Pro Football Focus most recently created an algorithm in order to project which NFL wide receivers are the best bets to top 1,000 yards in 2020. Jones and even No. 2 option Calvin Ridley made the top 23 list.
Jones stands at the very top of the list with no surprise there. Jones hasn’t finished out of the top three in receiving yards in the past seven seasons. PFF has Jones receiving for 1,628 yards, 234 yards more than he finished in 2019.
Last season Jones started all 15 games he played in catching 99 passes for 1,394 yards (14.1 average) and six touchdowns. The 2019 season marked Jones’ sixth straight season of 1,300 yards plus and the 31-year-old certainly has a lot of play left in him to lock in the No. 1 position.
Jones Should Have a Stat Named After Him
Jones is the yards per route king and many analysts have suggested that the stat be named in honor of his enormous success.
“The efficiency metric of yards per route run may as well be named after Julio — he has led all WRs in that category in five of the last seven years and never ranked outside the top five,” PFF’s Jarad Evans said. “Jones and [Michael] Thomas were the only players to have more than 40 catches of at least 15 yards last season. Book it.”
The Falcons finished with a 7-9 record last season, but that didn’t stop Julio from setting his own benchmarks.
The 31-year-old became the fastest receiver in the league to reach 12,000 yards last season through 126 games for the highest per game average in NFL history (96.2 YPG).
Julio Jones Is the Best WR in the League
The ongoing debate as to who is the best receiver in the league is funny because every time it’s asked a player always compares himself to Jones. Antonio Brown said it back in March too.
Julio is his own breed. The only other player who you will frequently see him compared to is Calvin Johnson, and rightfully so. You won’t see real expert analysts comparing DeAndre Hopkins or Michael Thomas with Johnson.
Hopkins is talented, yes, but we have yet to see the kind of numbers from him that we have seen from Jones or Thomas.
This year is going to be even better for Julio considering the Falcons’ offense stars several former first-rounders. The best part is, Matt Ryan is still in his prime and Todd Gurley is entering the backfield, but Jones is still Ryan’s No. 1 receiver until the others have gained his trust.