Julio Jones, wide receiver, Atlanta Falcons
Flipper Anderson must’ve been sweating while watching Jones’ performance Sunday. For those of you who don’t know, Anderson holds the record for most receiving yards in a game with 336. Jones approached that mark but fell short at 300 yards against the Carolina Panthers.
Michael Crabtree, wide receiver, Oakland Raiders
After drudging week-to-week with poor quarterback play in San Francisco, Crabtree’s career has been revived in Oakland playing alongside quarterback Derek Carr.
Opposing teams’ star cornerbacks have to line up against second-year receiver Amari Cooper, leaving Crabtree paired up with a less talented defensive back.
Crabtree wowed fans in Baltimore as he hauled in three receiving touchdowns, including the winning score with just over two minutes remaining.
Russell Wilson, quarterback, Seattle Seahawks
Wilson’s lingering knee injury didn’t seem to affect him Sunday, as he turned in his first multi-touchdown performance of the season. Wilson completed over 70 percent of his passes on the way to a 27-17 victory against the New York Jets. Heading into a bye week, Wilson has a chance to fully recover before facing the red-hot Falcons in Week 6.
Rob Gronkowski, tight end, New England Patriots
Two games played, two weeks of disappointment for Gronkowski owners. Gronk reeled in his first and only pass of the season in the fourth quarter against the Bills but owners shouldn’t be alarmed. He’s been targeted only three times this season and ran a mere 13 routes Sunday. Gronkowski will surely return to form when quarterback Tom Brady makes his season debut Sunday against the lowly Cleveland Browns, who allowed two touchdowns to Redskins tight end Jordan Reed on Sunday.
Jamaal Charles, running back, Kansas City Chiefs
Two star running backs made their season debut Sunday night. Pittsburgh’s Le’Veon Bell impressed. Charles didn’t. The Chiefs were kept off the scoreboard until the fourth quarter, which created a need to pass. Charles also didn’t see much playing time, as he carried the ball twice. Look for him to get more touches each week as he returns from a torn ACL.
DeAndre Hopkins, wide receiver, Houston Texans
Hopkins found himself double-teamed by Titans defensive backs Sunday. The strategy paid off, as Hopkins was limited to 4 yards on one reception. Rookie wide receiver Will Fuller V has eaten away at Hopkins’ production this season, but Hopkins remains one of the NFL’s most dominant receivers. First-year Houston quarterback Brock Osweiler has to develop a better chemistry with the star receiver and give him more opportunities to score. Hopkins has received 10 targets just once this season.