In the 2023 NFL draft, no receivers were selected until the 20th pick when the Seahawks picked Jaxon Smith-Njigba. This immediately led to a run on receivers with the Chargers selecting Quentin Johnston at 21, the Ravens taking Flowers at 22, and the Vikings selecting Jordan Addison at 23.
Through a third of their rookie seasons, these four receivers have had vastly different results. Here's a breakdown of how Ravens' receiver Zay Flowers compares to his fellow first-rounders.
1. Jaxon Smith-Njigba (SEA, 20th OVR pick)
"JSN" was the first receiver selected in the 2023 draft and many viewed him as a perfect fit for the Seahawks.
Seattle features one of the best receiver duos in football with D.K Metcalf and Tyler Lockett on their roster. However, many presumed Smith-Njigba would be a perfect fit as the primary slot receiver in Seattle's offense. That hasn't worked through the first 5 games.
JSN has struggled to establish himself so far, posting some pretty underwhelming numbers for a receiver who was supposed to be one of the most pro-ready receiving prospects in recent seasons. JSN has been targeted 25 times through the first 5 games of the season, posting 16 catches and just 110 yards.
JSN has not found the end zone through his first 5 games and is averaging just 6.9 yards per catch. His longest reception so far this season has been for just 18 yards and he has 2 drops on the year.
It's still very early in his career and JSN is too talented to not be a productive player, but it hasn't been the seamless transition we all were expecting for the Ohio State product.