In spite of the fact that he had to play a long stretch of the season without his quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown just wrapped up a stellar regular season campaign, going down as one of the greats in NFL history.
The fact that he actually had competition just speaks to how well his competitor, Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Julio Jones, has done, both co-authoring history as having the highest output by two players in NFL history.
Brown ended the regular season with a 13-reception, 187-yard day, and Jones closed with style as well, adding 149 yards on nine receptions. They tied with 136 receptions for the year, now sharing the second-most receptions in a single season in NFL history.
Just last season, Brown’s 129 receptions marked the second-most in NFL history, behind just Marvin Harrison’s mark of 143. 129 is now the fourth-most in NFL history, with both Brown and Jones surpassing it this season.
The two also each cracked the top five for the most receiving yards in a single season in NFL history, with Jones coming out on top between the two. His 1871 receiving yards is the second-most in NFL history, surpassing the mark that Jerry Rice set in 1995 with 1848 yards. That mark stood until 2012 when Calvin Johnson blew past it for 1946 yards.
Brown is now behind just Johnson, Jones, and Rice on that list, as he passed Isaac Bruce to finish with 1834 yards, now the fourth-most in NFL history. The 1698 yards that he had last year is now the eighth-most in NFL history thanks to this season’s escapades.
Equally noteworthy is that Brown has done to the Steelers’ franchise record books, which is nothing short of shattering them. For the second consecutive season, he has blown past the team’s single-season record for receptions.
Until 2014, the record was owned by Hines Ward with 112 receptions. Brown came close with 110 in 2013, becoming just the second Steelers receiver with a triple-digit total. He shattered it in 2014 with 129, and then he lapped himself with 136 this year.
For the third consecutive season, he has also stormed past Yancey Thigpen’s old record for receiving yards in a season. In 1997, he recorded 1398 receiving yards. That is now just the fourth-best mark in team history after Brown’s last three seasons.
His 1499 in 2013 gained serious separation on the record, and he only further eclipsed it last year with 1698 yards. He now significantly bettered his own record yet again, pushing the total to 1834 yards. That is 436 yards more than another other receiver in team history has ever had.
He also happened to finish the season with 10 touchdown passes, becoming just the second player in team history to have double-digit touchdowns in consecutive seasons, which Ward did in 2002-03. Ward caught 22 touchdown passes in that span. Brown caught 23, which is now the most in a two-year period in the Steelers’ record books.