Roddy White A Falcons All-Timer
Every team is always looking for playmakers. You can't have enough of them. In today’s NFL, players who can catch the football and make a play are worth their weight in gold in what has evolved into a pass-happy league.
In the spring of 2005, six receivers were selected in the first round of the NFL Draft. Braylon Edwards, Troy Williamson and Mike Williams were each selected in the top 10. Each has largely been a disappointment over the course of their respective careers. Matt Jones and Mark Clayton were selected later in the round but never fulfilled the expectations of being first-round picks.
But the final receiver selected in the round was a young man named Sharod White from the University of Alabama-Birmingham. At pick No. 27, the Atlanta Falcons landed the player who has gone on to set most of their franchise records at the receiver position.
Roddy White enters his ninth season in the NFL with a chance to own every Falcons receiving record in the history of the franchise. He is already first in receptions (622), first in yards (8,725) and third in touchdown receptions (52). With six touchdown catches this year, White will hold that record as well.
Despite the reception numbers over his career and his four Pro Bowl appearances, White has managed to fly under the radar whenever the topic of the best receivers in the NFL comes up. Over the past three NFL seasons, the only receiver with more catches than White has been former Patriot Wes Welker with 326. White’s 307 have been more than Detroit's Calvin Johnson (295), Indianapolis' Reggie Wayne (292) and Chicago's Brandon Marshall (285) during that span.
The Falcons have plenty of weapons. WR Julio Jones and TE Tony Gonzalez will continue to get their share of targets, and with new addition Steven Jackson a dual threat out of the backfield, it is expected that he will get his share of receptions as well. But when it is third-and-eight with the game on the line, QB Matt Ryan will look for the guy who often gets overlooked to get the job done.