Dale Lolley pointed out today on Twitter that Steelers second year wide receiver Antonio Brown leads the NFL in catches over the last 4 weeks with 26. I double checked the numbers and it is indeed a true stat. Brown has been targeted 40 times in the last 4 games and has caught 65% of them for 364 yards.
Catches are fine and dandy, but perhaps an even greater stat is that 22 of the 26 balls he has caught have resulted in a first down or a touchdown. That is 85% of balls caught producing more than just a catch. He is averaging 14 yards per catch over that span and 9.1 yards per target in addition.
Mike Wallace is not far behind Brown over these last 4 weeks as he has hauled in 20 passes out of 30 targets for a 67% completion ratio. His 310 yards receiving equates to a 15.5 yards per catch over the last 4 weeks and a 10.3 yards per target number. Like Brown, his receptions move the chains at a good clip too as 16 of those 20 catches have produced first downs or touchdowns. Not to be forgotten is tight end Heath Miller as he has 19 catches over the last 4 weeks and his stats are impressive as well.
I called out Brown, Emmanuel Sanders and Ben Roethlisberger following the Jaguars game in week for their inability to connect through the first 6 weeks of the season. I noted it was time for them all to buckle down for the run through the tough part of schedule that they were facing and they surely have. Although Sanders has missed the last two games, Roethlisberger was indeed connecting with him in the games against the Cardinals and the Patriots as well. In those two games Sanders totaled 10 catches and was targeted 15 times. That is a cool 67% completion ratio and exactly what I was hoping for.
With Jerricho Cotchery now producing as I expected he would, this receiving group looks deadlier than ever down the stretch. Sure Hines Ward might see his role increase even more, but it will keep him fresh late in the year as the Steelers look good to make a run at another postseason.
Below are the receiving stats from the last 4 weeks and I cut it off at players with 15 or more catches.
|RANK||PLAYER||TARG||REC||COMP %||YDS||YPC||YPT||1ST||1ST %||TD|