COMMENTARY | The Green Bay Packers' offense has been one of the most exciting, high-powered offenses that the NFL has seen in recent history. Aaron Rodgers is obviously the main reason for the recent success of the Green Bay offense, but one very underrated player is Jordy Nelson. He has been among the league leaders in quite a few receiving categories over the last four to five seasons, but has not received the status of "elite" by many.
Green Bay has been blessed by having many talented wide receivers over the last few seasons. Greg Jennings, Randall Cobb, and James Jones have all been very consistent players over the past few years and they have taken some of the national attention off of Jordy Nelson's great numbers. Nelson is usually thought of as a big play threat, but he's also capable of making plays across the middle and out wide in the quick screen game.
Over the last four seasons, Jordy Nelson has caught 31 touchdowns, which is among the league leaders. He also has caught four touchdowns that have been for 75 yards or more and ties Julio Jones in that statistic over the last four seasons. His name isn't one that usually comes out in the conversation of top wide receivers in the NFL, but he's shown each year that it should.
Nelson is one of the most versatile wide receivers in the NFL as well and has an uncanny ability to make acrobatic catches on the sidelines. There have been quite a few people noticing his incredible hands and ability to contort his body to land two feet inbounds this year. Aaron Rodgers has said multiple times that he has the ultimate trust in Nelson that he will be able to catch the football no matter where he throws it. Those words coming from a superstar quarterback certainly mean something on their own.
Another point that shows the versatility that Nelson possesses, is where he lines up on the field. He is usually the Packers' number one target, but there are quite a few times where he will line up in the slot as well. There is absolutely no fear in him and he's just as willing to make tough catches across the middle as he is to use his speed to make plays down the field. Nelson is the complete package when it comes to using him in different ways.
Early on in his career, Nelson struggled with dropping the football, but that has not been the case over the last few years especially. He has developed one of the best pair of hands in the NFL and that's saying something as he is targeted quite frequently.
Obviously players like Calvin Johnson, Dez Bryant, Larry Fitzgerald, Demaryius Thomas, Andre Johnson, and Brandon Marshall could all arguably be better than Nelson, but he's right up there in the discussion. Not many analysts give Nelson the credit of being an elite wide receiver, but go take a look at his numbers for yourself and compare them to other names that are mentioned. You'll find that Jordy Nelson's name is listed right behind or quite possibly over a lot of those players. The answer is quite simply, yes, Jordy Nelson is indeed an elite NFL wide receiver.
Evan Massey lives in Indianapolis and has followed the Green Bay Packers for the past 16 years. He has written for many sports websites including ProSportsExtra.com, Hoops-Nation.com, ProFootballSpot.com, and NaptownsFinest.com. Follow Evan on Twitter at @massey_evan.
- American Football
- Sports & Recreation
- Green Bay Packers
- Jordy Nelson
- Aaron Rodgers