In recent years, wide receivers in the National Football League have received a great deal of attention. It’s often because, for whatever reason, pass-catchers tend to be the most outspoken members of their respective teams.
Wideouts may talk a lot, but they are also a key part of a team’s offense, which is why they make the big bucks. For those who might wonder just how much the NFL’s highest-paid wider receivers make each year, we have the answer. Here is a look at the ten highest-paid receivers, according to MSN Sports, with several very notable changes.
10 Jarvis Landry: $15.1 million
The Miami Dolphins would draft Jarvis Landry in the second round back in 2014. The 26-year-old receiver has made a name for himself in the league and has already made four Pro Bowl appearances. In 2017, Landry led the NFL in receptions. The following year, the Dolphins decided to trade him to the Cleveland Browns.
Apparently, the Browns view Landry as a big part of the franchise’s future. As such, they offered him a five-year deal worth $75.5 million – $47 million of which is guaranteed money. This comes out to a whopping $15.1 million per NFL season for the talented wideout.
9 Sammy Watkins: $16 million
After an outstanding college career at Clemson, the Buffalo Bills decided to select Sammy Watkins fourth overall during the 2014 NFL Draft. He was productive when he played in Buffalo but had a hard time staying healthy, which has been a theme throughout his career. He was traded to the Rams, whom he played with for a season, before signing with his current team, the Kansas City Chiefs in 2018.
Statistically speaking, Watkins hasn’t lived up to the hype; 2015 was the only season in which he recorded over 1,000 yards receiving (1,047). Still the 26-year-old is one of the highest-paid players at the position and makes $16 million a year.
8 Adam Thielen: $16.2 million
In retrospect, it’s hard to believe that there wasn’t a single NFL team that was interested in drafting Adam Thielen back in 2013. However, the Vikings were wise enough to sign the former Minnesota State Maverick as an undrafted free agent. Over the last two years, he has been one of the NFL’s top wideouts, having put up a grand total of 2,649 receiving yards. This lead to a pair of Pro Bowl appearances and a very lucrative contract.
The Viking have their star receiver locked down until 2025, when he’s sat to become a free agent. In the meantime, he’ll be making $16.2 million per season.
7 Rams WR Brandin Cooks: $16.2 million
The New Orleans Saints used their twentieth overall pick in the 2014 draft to select Brandin Cooks. The speedy deep threat was traded to the Patriots in 2017 and was traded again to the Rams the following season. The 25-year-old has been productive wherever he’s played and has over 1,000 yards receiving on four out of the five years he’s been in the league. This is why the Rams decided to offer the young receiver a very lucrative deal.
Los Angles offered Cooks a five-year contract worth a cool $81 million ($20.5 million guaranteed). For those who don’t feel like doing the math, that’s $16.2 million a year.
6 Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins: $16.2 million
The Houston Texans made a good decision when they picked DeAndre Hopkins, late in the first round, back in 2013. The star wide receiver has been named to the Pro Bowl three times and led the league in touchdowns back in 2017, by catching thirteen passes in the end zone. He’s already off to a hot start in 2019, having caught eight passes for 111 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the Texans season debut against the Saints.
Hopkins monster stat lines have helped make him one of the highest-paid players in the NFL. The talented 27-year-old currently makes $16.2 million annually.
5 Mike Evans: $16.5 million
With the seventh pick of the 2014 NFL Draft, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers selected wide receiver Mike Evans out of Texas A&M. Since that time, he has been one of the few consistent bright spots on the Buccaneers’ offense. The two time Pro Bowler has racked up over 1,000 receiving yards every season, from his rookie year on (2014-2018). Last year, he became the youngest player to reach the 6,000 career receiving yards (25 years, 131 days).
The Bucs decided to lock down their offense superstar for the foreseeable future by offering a huge contract. He’ll be making $16.5 million a season, before becoming a free agent in 2024.
4 Tyreek Hill $18 Million
When the Kansas City Chiefs drafted Tyreek Hill in the fifth round in 2016, they probably weren’t expecting him to become one of the NFL’s top receiving options – but he has. The 5-foot-10 speedster out West Alabama has become quarterback Patrick Mahomes favorite target at the position and a three-time pro bowler. Outside of receiving duties, Hill is also a kick returner on special teams.
Tyrek Hill only recently became a member of our illustrious list. This September, the receiver signed a deal that will keep him with the Chiefs until 2023. The three-year deal is worth $54 million, which means he’ll be making $18 million a year, according to Over The Cap.
3 Odell Beckham Jr :$18 Million
Odell Beckham Jr. was selected twelfth overall by the New York Giants in 2014. He soon became known for his highlight-reel catches and high-level play on the field. Beckham has been to three Pro Bowls and was named Offensive Rooke of the Year back in 2014. The Giants offered him a lucrative contract extension in 2018. However, they ultimately decided to trade him to the Cleveland Browns this past offseason for Jabrill Peppers and some early-round draft picks.
Clevland ended up acquiring a talented, albeit pricey, wide receiver in the deal. Beckham is scheduled to make $18 million a year and will become a free agent in 2024.
2 Michael Thomas: $19.2 Million
Michael Thomas spent his college days playing for Ohio State, prior to being drafted by the New Orleans Saints in the second round back in 2014. He has quickly established himself as quarterback Drew Brees’s go-to guy and racked up some impressive yardage totals in the process. The two-time Pro Bowler led the NFL in receptions this past season.
The Saints decided to sign their star wideout to longterm deal this past July and offered him a very impressive contract. It was reported that Thomas signed a five-year deal worth $100 million, which comes out to $19.25 million a season.
1 Julio Jones: $22 Million
Back in the 2011 NFL Draft, the Atlanta Falcons selected Julio Jones with the sixth overall pick that year. The talented wideout wasted no time establishing himself as an elite receiving threat and has become the Falcons’ franchise player. He has made six Pro Bowl appearances, led the league in reception in 2015, and led the NFL in receiving yards twice (2015,2018). The 30-year-old wideout is a game-changer and is compensated as such.
Last July, Michael Thomas signed a deal that made him the highest-paid receiver in the NFL, but he wouldn’t hold that title for long. On September 7, 2019, Atlanta offered Jones a three-year deal worth $22 million a season according to Over The Cap – making him the new highest-paid player at the position.