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Grading the Dolphins wide receivers after their 2023 season

The Miami Dolphins finished their 2023 campaign with an 11-6 record and made the postseason for the second time in as many years under head coach Mike McDaniel. Unfortunately, it came to an end with a loss to the Kansas City Chiefs in the wild-card round.

While other teams are in the midst of their playoff run, it’s time to do some reflecting on the team in South Florida.

Over the next couple of weeks, we’ll be reviewing and evaluating different positions for the Dolphins in 2023. Today, we’ll look at the wide receivers.

Tyreek Hill: A

(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)

Hill entered the season with the goal of breaking Calvin Johnson’s single-season record for receiving yards and becoming the first wideout to reach 2,000 yards. Unfortunately, he fell just short of that goal, but he was still incredible.

The Cheetah finished the season with 119 receptions (tying a franchise single-season record he set in 2022), 1,799 yards (breaking a franchise single-season record he set in 2022) and 13 touchdowns.

While Hill wasn’t on the field as much as the league’s best, partially due to the offense and partially due to injury, he was still able to lead the league in both receiving yards and touchdowns.

Jaylen Waddle: A-

Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Injuries marred Waddle’s season, as he missed three games and gutted through some others. He still recorded 72 receptions for 1,014 yards and four scores, becoming the first player in team history to put up three straight 1,000-yard seasons.

A healthy Waddle probably makes this team much better down the stretch and into the playoffs.

Braxton Berrios: C+

(Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images)
(Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images)

Berrios was a fine addition in the slot this year, recording 27 receptions for 238 yards and a lone touchdown. However, he was mainly brought in for his return abilities, and while he never broke one for a score, he did a solid job setting up Miami’s offense with some good field position for most of the year.

Cedrick Wilson Jr.: C

Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Tommy Gilligan-USA TODAY Sports

Wilson was a bit of a disappointment in 2022, leading to a reworked contract heading into 2023. He finished the year with 22 receptions for 296 yards and three touchdowns.

The numbers don’t jump off the page, but it did feel like he was coming up in some of those clutch situations that Trent Sherfield took advantage of the year prior as well as impressing with his blocking ability.

With his deal now voiding after this season, he’ll become a free agent, and there’s a good chance he’s played his last snap for the Dolphins.

River Cracraft: D+

(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
(Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)

Cracraft’s 2023 season was limited to just 10 games due to a shoulder injury in the team’s blowout win over the Denver Broncos that landed him on injured reserve.

As a depth piece in the offense, the 29-year-old recorded nine receptions for 121 yards (career-high) and a touchdown.

Considering his familiarity with the system and likely inexpensive price tag, Cracraft could return in 2024 on a new deal.

Robbie Chosen: D

Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Nathan Ray Seebeck-USA TODAY Sports

When Miami added Chosen in the offseason, it felt like he could see a bounce back to his days with the New York Jets and Carolina Panthers when he was totaling at least 750 yards for four straight seasons.

Unfortunately, Chosen wasn’t able to carve out a huge role in the offense, as he finished the year with just four receptions for 126 yards and a 68-yard touchdown in garbage time against the Broncos.

Chase Claypool: D-

Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

After falling out with the Chicago Bears, the Dolphins acquired Claypool and a 2025 seventh-round pick for a 2025 sixth-round pick in October.

Claypool played in just nine games, recording four receptions for 26 yards. He dealt with a knee injury that caused him to have surgery during the bye week. Between the injury and the healthy scratches, he was limited to just 51 offensive snaps for the team.

 

Erik Ezukanma: INC

(Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images)
(Photo by Megan Briggs/Getty Images)

Ezukanma looked like he was going to play a bigger role in Miami’s offense in 2023 after a preseason showing that featured him as a runner, but he was placed on the team’s non-football injury after just two games due to a neck injury that he had actually suffered in college.

He finished the year with no catches, but he did rush for 22 yards on 4.4 yards per attempt. Hopefully, he can be cleared for football activities for 2024 and make an impact.

Story originally appeared on Dolphins Wire