Davante Adams, widely considered one of the best wide receivers in the league, could have his legacy tarnished if the Las Vegas Raiders continue to play poorly.
Davante Adams has been touted as one of the top receivers in the National Football League in the last several years. Adams exploded on the scene in Green Bay with the Packers for seven seasons after being drafted in 2014. What followed was five seasons of double-digit touchdowns, three seasons of 1,000+ receiving yards, 5 Pro Bowl selections, 2 1st team All-Pro selections, and the list goes on and on.
Fast forward to 2022 where Adams, now a Las Vegas Raider, has reunited with his college quarterback, Derek Carr, by choice. The Raiders stand at 2-5 with Week 9 approaching and the Raiders are coming off a brutal 0-24 loss to the New Orleans Saints. In this game, Adams was limited to one reception for 3 yards.
This was not Adams’ first game with the Raiders with single-digit receiving yards; in Week 2 against the Cardinals, he was held to 2 catches for 7 yards. Davante Adams signed a 5-year contract worth $140 million. In two weeks out of the seven, the Raiders have played in Adams reached a total of 10 yards. That is abysmal.
Adams left a winning culture in Green Bay with one of the greatest quarterbacks of all time; Aaron Rodgers. During Adams’ seven seasons with the Packers, they made the playoffs six times with four appearances in the NFC Championship. The Raiders are currently last in the AFC West and have a 14% chance of making the playoffs. This is hardly the groundbreaking first year we expected in Vegas for Adams and the Raiders.
The current performance by the Raiders is putting Davante Adams’ legacy at risk. While he has been the popular vote for “best receiver” in the NFL for the last three seasons or so his stock is plummeting. Adams currently ranks 20th in receptions (38) and 16th in yards (512). There are several receivers currently ranking ahead of Adams in these categories that would normally never be a part of any conversation involving Davante Adams.
Saints rookie Chris Olave, Seahawks Tyler Lockett, Commanders Terry McLaurin, and even tight end Travis Kelce rank ahead of Adams, and Bengals WR2 Tee Higgins and Jaguars Christian Kirk are right behind him.
The top receivers in the league now currently include Stefon Diggs, Tyreek Hill, Justin Jefferson, AJ brown, Cooper Kupp, and Jaylen Waddle. None of these names are overly surprising but the only category where Adams falls even close to these six players is his touchdowns, with 5 (ranked 4th).
Adams came to Vegas to win a championship and to continue to excel as a player. Adams cannot succeed in either of those goals if the Raiders continue in their downward spiral that is the 2022 season. The whispers will begin amongst fans and analysts within the league questioning whether or not Adams is a Hall of Famer. Several record-setting seasons are something for Adams to put on his resume and anyone that watches him can see that his individual talent is far more developed than most receivers in the NFL.
But will Adams ever win a Super Bowl? Will he ever play in one? His former quarterback Aaron Rodgers already has the stigma of “only” winning one Super Bowl, Adams may not ever even get to that point in his career at this point.
The Raiders need to use Adams as intended and utilize his talents as a route runner and a threat with the ball in his hands. But single-digit receiving yards and failed jet sweeps (the Packers never attempted to have Adams run the ball) are not going to be enough to help Adams continue his legacy. Adams needs to spearhead the Raiders’ offense and they need to follow their own mantra inspired by Al Davis himself, “Just Win, Baby”. The Raiders owe Adams that much.