Gregg Rosenthal and Dan Hanzus of NFL.com both think Arizona wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald will have a regression during the 2014 season.
Here’s their rationale as to why this will happen.
There was a time when Fitzgerald was the greatest wide receiver on the planet. Who could forget the 2008 postseason, when Fitzgerald and Kurt Warner nearly willed the Arizona Cardinals to a Super Bowl title? Fitzgerald is no longer the same dominant playmaker, and the emergence of Michael Floyd threatens to relegate Fitzgerald to second banana status.
On the plus side, Fitzgerald has the potential to be football’s tastiest second banana. The best-case scenario has Fitzgerald’s post-age 30 career evoking comparisons to Reggie Wayne, who adapted to his game with age and found extended success playing under — wait for it — Bruce Arians. This is a time of transition for Fitzgerald, and his numbers may reflect that.
Wow. Floyd as top banana. Mull that over for a second.
The other seven on their list were: Wes Welker, Fred Jackson, Antonio Gates, Cam Newton, DeMarcus Ware, Knowshon Moreno and Arian Foster. Newton seems to be the most logical choice given Carolina’s pedestrian receiving corps. Fitzgerald might have a bit of a backslide but that should only make him more effective in the long run.