Is Dez Bryant a Calvin Johnson-Caliber WR?
At Dallas News, I explained why I think Dez Bryant has the potential to be better than Megatron:
Bryant, who will begin the 2013 season at age 24, is coming off of a season in which he posted a line of 92/1,382/12 at an age when the average NFL wide receiver is playing at just 83 percent of his eventual peak efficiency. That’s a really, really scary thought for opposing cornerbacks.
And although it now seems like Johnson dominated the league from the moment he was drafted by the Lions, that’s not the case. So let’s compare Bryant’s first three seasons in the NFL to Megatron’s initial three campaigns. First, let’s look at yards per target.
Johnson received 382 targets in his first three NFL seasons, compared to just 313 for Bryant. Despite that, the two posted very comparable receiving totals. That’s because Bryant was more efficient, averaging a robust 9.17 yards per target, compared to just 8.04 for Johnson.
Second, Bryant is one of the game’s premiere scoring threats. The same is true for Megatron, but I’d go as far as to say that Bryant is the NFL’s best red zone receiver. His ball skills are simply out of this world and he seems to never lose in any jump ball situations. If forced to guess on who will score more touchdowns in 2013, my choice would be Bryant, and it wouldn’t even be close.