1. Keenan Allen, Los Angeles Chargers
The sixth-year veteran out of California is the best wide receiver currently in the AFC West. After three injury-plagued seasons, Allen finally suited up for a full 16 game schedule in 2017. The results were nothing short of impressive.
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Allen tallied 102 receptions for 1,393 yards and six touchdowns in route to his first Pro Bowl selection. His receptions were good for fourth in the league and broke a Chargers single-season record. Meanwhile, his yardage total was good for third in the league and placed him second on the Chargers’ all-time list.
Allen isn’t a one year wonder, however. His rookie season was one of the most dominant wide receiver premiers of all time. He caught 71 passes for over 1,000 yards and eight touchdowns.
These numbers earned him the honor of Offensive Rookie of the Year.
The one knock has and will be his injuries. In the only two seasons in which Allen has played more than 14 games, he has been superb. His other three seasons have been dismal, to say the least only playing in 23 total games.
Setting injuries aside, Allen is a tough matchup for any cornerback in the division. While he may not have the speed of Hill or the consistent production of Thomas, he is the best all-around receiver in the division. That is when he is healthy of course.
With last year’s first rounder, Mike Williams, getting better acclimated to the offense, defenses will not be able to key on Allen. This will open up more space for him to operate, and in turn, provide another year of elite production.
For the first time in a while, there are a number of high-performing receivers in the AFC West. Furthermore, there are many young guys waiting to breakthrough including the Denver Bronco’s two recent draft additions. Additionally, the talent under center is the best it’s been in quite some time.
Things are about to get really exciting this year in the AFC West. Each team is well equipped to make a run for a division title behind explosive passing games with these receivers.