Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Mike Evans finished third in the NFL in receiving yards in 2018, joining Atlanta’s Julio Jones and Houston’s DeAndre Hopkins as the only three players in the league to crack 1,500 yards. Evans recorded a career-high 1,524 yards, 48 fewer than Hopkins and 153 fewer than Jones.
Of course, Evans also had 29 fewer receptions than Hopkins and 27 fewer than Jones. That’s not a criticism of Evans, who played in an offense that pulled off the rare feat of having four different players who surpassed 750 receiving yards in the same season. More on that below. The Buccaneers had a deep group of talented pass-catchers to feed, which was always going to put some kind of limit on how many opportunities Evans would get.
And it certainly worked. Compare the Buccaneers’ passing attack to that of the Falcons, who were also quite prolific through the air. Tampa Bay threw 625 passes and completed 408 of them. Atlanta’s numbers were very similar: 617 passes, 428 completions. But Tampa Bay averaged a league-leading 320.3 passing yards per game, to 290.8 for the Falcons, who finished fourth.
What Evans’ numbers indicate that he made the most of his opportunities.