The New York Jets received tough news earlier this week that wide receiver Quincy Enunwa was headed to season-ending injured reserve for a neck injury. The loss leaves the Jets with the barest of cupboards at the wide receiver position — they don't have a receiver on roster with 1,000 career receiving yards.
The losses of Eric Decker and Brandon Marshall in free agency and Enunwa to injury represents 50.4 percent of the Jets' receiving yardage from 2016, and Decker only played in three games.
Simply put, the Jets are in trouble as they head into the season with a bunch of young, unproven players at wide receiver. Take a look at their depth chart, courtesy of Ourlads:
Does that group inspire faith, Jets fans? It shouldn't.
Former Chicago Bears receiver Marquess Wilson leads the group with 777 career receiving yards — over the past four seasons. Robby Anderson totaled 587 yards as a rookie last year. Charone Peak is not a mountain in West Virginia.
Chad Hansen and ArDarius Stewart are promising rookies, but these are dire straights, especially when your quarterback is going to be Josh McCown or *gasp* Christian Hackenberg. Oh, Bryce Petty's there, too.
So let's fix this problem…which college football receiving group would be better than what the Jets are throwing out there? Here's a few suggestions:
Honorable Mention: Clemson
The reigning national champions return stud receiver Deon Cain and title-game hero Hunter Renfrow, among others. Their depth chart is much more exciting than the Jets.
Honorable Mention: South Dakota State
Two players alone — wide receiver Jake Wieneke and tight end Dallas Goedert — would be immediate upgrades. The Jets will have a chance to draft them next spring with what is sure to be a high draft pick.
TOP RECEIVING GROUPS IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL
The Players: James Washington, Jalen McCleskey, Tyron Johnson, Chris Lacy, Marcell Ateman
Oklahoma State is loaded at wide receiver, and features two of the most explosive players in a Big 12 Conference filled with explosive players — James Washington and Jalen McCleskey.
That duo alone combined for nearly 2,200 yards and 17 touchdowns last year. Washington averaged 19.4 yards per catch, and as Andrew Doughty wrote, McCleskey is an underrated deep threat, too.
Oklahoma State is going to toss the ball all over the place this fall, unlike the New York Jets.
The Players: Anthony Miller, Phil Mayhue, John Williams, DaMonte Coxie
As our Andy Coffaro wrote earlier this summer, Memphis is absolutely stacked at wide receiver heading into the 2017 season. Miller and Mayhue combined to catch 137 passes for 2,111 yards and 18 touchdowns last year. Williams saw limited work and Coxie redshirted.
This year that foursome expects to be among the best wide receiver units in all of college football.
The Players: Jeff Badet, Mark Andrews, Jeffery Mead, A.D. Miller, Marquise Brown
Dede Westbrook might be in the NFL (but not on the Jets) but the Sooners bring back a ton of talent. They also added an impact transfer in former Kentucky wide receiver Jeff Badet.
He caught 31 passes for 670 yards and four touchdowns last season — averaging 21.6 yards per catch — and gets to catch passes from Baker Mayfield this fall.
The Players: Antonio Calloway, Tyrie Cleveland, Brandon Powell, Dre Massey, Freddie Swain, Joshua Hammond
Callloway is already being talked about as a potential top-5 wide receiver in the 2018 NFL Draft. He had 54 catches for 721 yards and three scores amid quarterback struggles.
Florida has a bunch of former 4-star recruits coming through the ranks, and added junior college transfer Dre Massey. With a competent quarterback, Florida could do some work through the air.
The Players: Richie James, Ty Lee, Jocquez Bruce, Patrick Smith, Desmond Anderson
Led by Richie James, Middle Tennessee has an exciting group of receivers. James had nearly 2,000 yards from scrimmage, catching 105 passes for 1,625 yards and 12 scores and rushing 38 times for 339 yards and four more TDs.
Ty Lee returns after a 700-yard season, and Jocquez Bruce, a Tennessee transfer, adds depth to an already loaded group.