By GERY WOELFL
Nobody is going to anoint Christian Watson and Romeo Doubs as the Green Bay Packers’ next great receivers.
But there are solid indications they could be.
The Packers selected Watson in the second round and chose Doubs in the fourth round of the 2022 NFL draft and, while their debut seasons were injury-plagued, Watson and Doubs clearly flashed moments of greatness.
Watson appeared in 14 of the team’s 17 games last season and had 41 receptions for 611 yards – an impressive 14.9 yards per reception – with a team-high seven touchdowns. That total is more than any of the Packers top 10 all-time receivers ever recorded as rookies.
Additionally, the 24-year-old Watson rushed for two TDs.
To put Watson’s sterling rookie season in perspective, his receiving numbers were better than the ones compiled by Davante Adams’, the former Packers and current Raiders All-Pro receiver, in his first pro season.
In Adams’ maiden season in Green Bay, when he played in all 16 games (two more than Watson): he had 38 receptions (three fewer than Watson), 446 yards (165 fewer than Watson) and three receiving TDs (four fewer than Watson).
Also, Watson’s average yard per catch last season was 14.9; Adams averaged 11.7 yards in his first pro season.
Doubs’ rookie season was nearly as impressive as Watson. While Doubs had one more reception than Watson, Doubs didn’t quite measure up to him in yards (425), yards per catch (10.1) and touchdowns (1).
Suffice to say, Watson and Doubs appear well on their way to having special careers.
Here is how Watson’s and Doub’s first pro season compared to some of the other great Packers receivers in their respective rookie years:
Name Rec Yds Ave. TD
Sterling Sharpe 55—791–14.4–1
James Lofton 46—818–17.8–6
Greg Jennings 45–632–14.0–3
Romeo Doubs 42—425—10.1–3
Christian Watson 41—611–14.9–7
Davante Adams 38—446–11.7–3
Jordy Nelson 33–366–11.1–2
Boyd Dowler 32—549–17.7–4
Randall Cobb 25–375–15.0–1
Don Hutson 18–420–23.3–6
Antonio Freeman 8–106–13.3–1
Donald Driver 3—31–10.3–1