When Ted Thompson signed Jordy Nelson to a 3 year, $13.35 million contract extension, the Packers GM probably thought he was locking up his second best receiver for the foreseeable future.
Or maybe not.
Perhaps Thompson knew Nelson was more than a No. 2 guy and felt he had to sign him before Nelson himself realized he was more than a No. 2, and set his price higher than what the Packers could afford.
Either way, the signing was a good one and Nelson has taken his game to a new level since the deal was announced. Actually, Nelson has played so well that he’s the Packers No. 1 receiver, at least for now.
Since signing the extension on Oct. 2, Nelson has 30 catches for 555 yards and seven TDs. He’s led the Packers in receiving yards three times and seems to be Rodgers’ favorite target when the QB breaks the pocket and needs to get rid of the ball.
Over that same stretch, Greg Jennings, generally considered to be the Packers No. 1 WR, has 35 catches for 498 yards and five TDs. Jennings hasn’t gone over 50 yards in his last three games and only managed two catches for six yards on Sunday.
For the season, Nelson has 40 catches for 759 yards (19 yards per catch) and nine TDs. Jennings has 53 catches for 761 yards (14.4 per catch) and seven TDs.
If you ask Rodgers who the Packers No. 1 receiver is, he will likely tell you he just throws to whoever is open. If we use the QB’s criteria, Nelson belongs in the discussion.
If we factor in big plays, the ability to get open when a play breaks down, and recent performance, Nelson is the clear No. 1.
Jennings might reclaim the top spot at some point this season. But either way, Thompson should pat himself on the back for locking up Nelson when he did.——————
Adam Czech is a a freelance sports reporter living in the Twin Cities and a proud supporter of American corn farmers. When not working, Adam is usually writing about, thinking about or worrying about the Packers. Follow Adam on Twitter. Twitter .