<
>

Antonio Brown, Julio Jones among most-featured receivers

Antonio Brown and Julio Jones posted two of the top five receiving yardage totals in NFL history in 2015, and they easily could push Calvin Johns's all-time record again in 2016. Getty Images

In his record-setting 2012 season, Calvin Johnson was targeted a league-high 201 times.

He finished that year with 1,964 yards, an NFL record that very well could be challenged this season, given the talented group of pass-catchers who are in their primes.

Just last year, Julio Jones and Antonio Brown piled up 1,871 and 1,834 yards, respectively. Those were two of the top five single-season yardage totals by wide receivers in NFL history.

The term "No. 1 wide receiver" is thrown around often, and few would argue that Johnson, Jones and Brown fit the classification.

But which current receivers are really the focal points of their respective passing games? Who are the guys getting the most opportunities on a weekly basis, regardless of opponent and matchup?

Below is a look at the 10 pass-catchers who accounted for the largest percentage of their teams' overall targets in 2015.

1. Antonio Brown (33.7 percent) -- No wide receiver took up a bigger chunk of his team's targets than Brown, and he was a monster in nearly every statistical category. Among the top 15 leading receivers, only Brown and Larry Fitzgerald caught more than 70 percent of the balls thrown their way. Given Brown's role in the Pittsburgh Steelers' offense and the success Ben Roethlisberger has had when throwing his way, it's not a leap to think that Brown could challenge Marvin Harrison's record of 143 receptions in a season.

2. Julio Jones (33.5 percent) -- Jones caught one pass for every 4.43 routes he ran last season, the highest rate of any wide receiver in the league. The Atlanta Falcons' offense focused on getting the ball in his hands, and Jones' 642 yards after the catch were tops in the NFL. Jones has averaged 111.7 yards per game over the past two seasons, and he once again will be the Falcons' go-to guy in 2016.

3. Alshon Jeffery (31.9 percent) -- He was sidelined by injuries and played in only nine games for the Chicago Bears last season. But when Jeffery was on the field, he was targeted once per every 2.9 routes, the highest rate of any pass-catcher in the past three seasons. Jeffery is slated to play under the franchise tag if the two sides can't reach a long-term extension, but either way, he figures to get plenty of looks from Jay Cutler.

4. DeAndre Hopkins (31.6 percent) -- No wide receiver ran more routes (651) than Hopkins in 2015. He has shown time and again that he doesn't need to be open to make plays. Hopkins is at his best making contested catches and coming down with balls that seem uncatchable. Making plays after the catch, however, was not his forte. Hopkins averaged just 1.77 yards in that category, which ranked last among 79 qualifying receivers. This summer will be all about getting his timing right with new Houston Texans quarterback Brock Osweiler.

5. Demaryius Thomas (29.6 percent) -- The Denver Broncos' passing offense struggled throughout last season, but they still tried to feature Thomas heavily and had varying degrees of success. Thomas averaged a career-low 12.4 yards per reception and struggled to hold on to the football, dropping 5.2 percent of the catchable passes thrown his way. The Broncos' quarterback situation is a giant question mark, but Thomas has had at least 90 catches and 1,300 yards in four straight seasons.

6. Brandon Marshall (29.0 percent) -- He and teammate Eric Decker accounted for a whopping 51.3 percent of the New York Jets' targets last season. Marshall's yardage total (1,502) was the second highest of his career, and no wide receiver in the NFL caught more touchdowns (14). Now, if only the Jets could figure out who's going to be throwing the football to Marshall.

7. Jeremy Maclin (29.0 percent) -- Only the St. Louis Rams and Minnesota Vikings had fewer targeted passes than the Kansas City Chiefs (450) last season. But Maclin was featured in Andy Reid's passing game and was one of the most efficient wideouts in the league. Among 1,000-yard receivers, only Maclin, Brown, Doug Baldwin and Fitzgerald caught at least 70 percent of the balls thrown their way.

8. Jarvis Landry (28.7 percent) -- He was a volume receiver in the Miami Dolphins' offense last season. Landry averaged just 10.52 yards per reception, which ranked 71st out of 79 qualifying receivers. But he showed the ability to break tackles, totaling 233 yards after contact, third best among wide receivers. Ryan Tannehill went to Landry often in the red zone, but was mostly unsuccessful. Landry's 21 red zone targets ranked tied for third among wideouts, but he finished the season with just four touchdowns.

9. Odell Beckham Jr. (27.4 percent) -- Last season, no player on this list was better with the ball in his hands than Beckham. Among the 22 wide receivers who had at least 1,000 yards in 2015, only Beckham averaged more than six yards after the catch. Beckham has piled up 2,755 yards and 25 touchdowns in his first 27 games in the NFL. At 23 years old, his role will only grow with the New York Giants.

10. Delanie Walker (26.9 percent) -- Surprised? Walker edged out A.J. Green (26.8 percent) for the final spot and is the only tight end to make the list. He accounted for a larger percentage of his offense's targets than peers Rob Gronkowski and Greg Olsen. Walker finished third among tight ends in receiving yards and caught 70.7 percent of his targets. He signed a contract extension in May and figures to be a continued favorite of Marcus Mariota in Tennessee.