Thanks to a monster first game from the most controversial pick in the draft, the Cortland Sutton saga lives on (as it will for some time) here in the GZL. The highly maligned pick (perhaps most harshly by yours truly) exploded onto the scene, posting 244 yards and 2 TDs on 7 receptions in week 1 against the Green Bay Packers. The rookies sensational performance had
mostly Tom wondering if Sutton was the first ever to achieve such a feat. The quick answer is no...but also yes.
Eight different wide receivers other than Sutton have posted 200+ yard games in their rookie year. Here's a quick breakdown of their games:
So, no - Cortland Sutton is not the first rookie receiver to accomplish this feat. However, he is the first one to do so in almost 7 years, as all of these other performances oddly came during a 3 year stretch during the 2012-2015 seasons. In addition, Sutton did
break the rookie single game receiving record previously held by Terrance Williams (223 yards)...in his first attempt. So, yes, it was a very impressive first outing by Sutton. He broke the single game receiving record by a rookie wide receiver, in his first ever GZL game, while becoming the first rookie wide receiver to eclipse 200 in a game in over seven years. But before we get ahead of ourselves, let's dive a little bit deeper into the stats to see what all of this really means.
Here you can see the career stats for all of the wide receivers who have accomplished this. As you can see, from this data, a 200+ yard game is not exactly indicative of a hall of fame career in the GZL. While there are a couple of very good receivers on that list in Rueben Randle and Terrance Williams, there are also a couple of wide receivers on the list who don't have a single 1,000 yard or 10 TD season to their name. In fact, five of the eight wide receivers to previously go for over 200 in a single game their rookie year only do not have more than one 1,000 yard season or 10 TD season in their career.
So, basically, this data is inconclusive as to the type of a career one could expect Sutton could have. All types of receivers with all types of careers have posted 200 yards as a rookie. He could easily be the next Rueben Randle, or he could be the next Norm Grace. He could finish the rest of the season of like Darvin Adams who posted 80% of his season touchdowns in one game, or he could go on to have a season like Randle who posted 5 more 100 yard games and over 1,250 yards on the season. Only time will tell.
Once again, the Sutton saga will live on.