Mike Wallace, Jeremy Maclin and Breshad Perriman are an explosive group of receivers. They also have high expectations for themselves this season.
“We expect to be the best in the league,” Wallace said Wednesday, per the team's website. “People look over us, but we don’t care. … We expect to have three 1,000-yard [receivers] if we can.”
Wallace finished the 2016 season with 72 catches, 1,017 yards and four touchdowns, his most productive season since 2011. In 2011, Wallace made the Pro Bowl after catching 72 passes, with 1,193 receiving yards and eight touchdowns with the Pittsburgh Steelers.
As for three 1,000-yard receivers, there have only been five trios in league history. Most recently, it was accomplished by three receivers on the 2008 Cardinals: Larry Fitzgerald (1,431), Anquan Boldin (1,038), Steve Breaston (1,006).
“I think we should expect to be the best trio in the league,” Maclin chimed in on Thursday. “That’s what we should expect and work for.”
Maclin has been fully healthy since tearing his groin last season with the Kansas City Chiefs. His production wasn’t what most expected from him in 2016. However, with a clean slate of health this season, Maclin could go back to his 1,000-yard ways. Maclin just recently went for 1,000+ yards in 2015 where he had 1,088 receiving yards and eight touchdowns.
“I’m excited. I’m excited from a personal standpoint, but also from a team standpoint,” Maclin said. “Like everyone has been saying, this is a good group, a very talented group. You look at all three of us [wide receivers], and we all add something different to the table. We’re also three guys who have the ability to do it all.”
Perriman is the third piece to the puzzle. After injuring his knee during his rookie season in 2015, Perriman came back the following year and caught 33 passes for 499 yards and three touchdowns. During this offseason, Perriman has wowed media and his fellow teammates alike, making acrobatic catches and appearing to be in his best shape since becoming a Raven.
“I think [Perriman] started to do it at the end of last year. It was just that me and Steve [Smith Sr.] were out there for the bulk of the time. But when he was out there, he was making plays the more and more he was out there,” Wallace said. “Just to see his skillset and the way he works every day, I think he is going to make a big jump and he is going to impress a lot of people and show why he was a first-round pick.”
Baltimore will have a lot of competition to settle the score this season. Among the competition is Pittsburgh’s Antonio Brown, Martavis Bryant and Eli Rogers or JuJu Smith-Schuster, the New York Giants’ Odell Beckham Jr., Brandon Marshall and Sterling Shepard, the Green Bay Packers’ Jordy Nelson, Davante Adams and Randall Cobb and lastly, the New England Patriots’ and Julian Edelman, Brandin Cooks and Malcolm Mitchell.
Who will be the first trio to each have 1,000 receiving yards since 2008?
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New York Giants
Green Bay Packers
New England Patriots