In a year where many expected the NFL's receiving yards leader to be Michael Thomas, Julio Jones, DeAndre Hopkins or Odell Beckham Jr., the player who is pacing the NFL in that category is the Buffalo Bills’ Stefon Diggs.
Diggs has always been a very talented receiver, but has not usually been viewed in the upper echelon of pass catchers in the NFL, in the top three or top five discussion.
Much of that could have been due to shaky quarterback play he had while playing for the Minnesota Vikings, but with a change of scenery, he’s proven that he can be a difference maker on one of the best teams in the league this year.
Through 14 games, the former University of Maryland star has amassed 1,314 yards through the air, including 5 touchdowns.
With two games still left in the NFL season, Diggs has already set his career high for receiving yards in a season, breaking his previous high of 1,130 set last year. He’s also posted a career high in total catches in 2020, with 111 catches to date.
Even though wide receivers on new teams don’t always mesh with new quarterbacks, it seems clear that Diggs and QB Josh Allen have developed a great chemistry.
The Bills were fortunate enough to acquire the fifth-year pro from the Minnesota Vikings for what seemed to be a steep price at the time, but now seems like a steal. Buffalo sent a first round pick, a fifth round pick and a sixth round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft to Minnesota, in addition to a fourth round pick in the upcoming 2021 NFL Draft. Last season, only WR John Brown eclipsed the 1,000-yard mark in Buffalo’s receiving corps, and was not considered to be a player that defenses needed to game plan for. Diggs however, fits that bill perfectly.
Even though Diggs has had his best NFL season with Buffalo, he had some big time moments during his time with the Vikings as well. No play he made was arguably more important than the catch he made as the 2018 divisional playoff game against the New Orleans Saints was about to end in defeat.
Down one point with one timeout and ten seconds left in the game, the Vikings would’ve been fine completing a pass to get them in field goal range. But as luck and fate would have it, the Saints defensive backs made a costly error, and QB Case Keenum’s prayer of a pass landed in Diggs’ hands, who would take it to the house for one of the most memorable finishes in playoff history.
The Bills are probably hoping that they won’t need to rely on a miracle finish in the 2020 postseason, but can take solace in the fact that their best offensive weapon has delivered in the most pressurized of situations in the past.Published 21 Dec 2020, 12:13 IST