Jaylen Waddle continues to impress in his rookie season for the Miami Dolphins, much like Ja’Marr Chase with the Cincinnati Bengals and DeVonta Smith with the Philadelphia Eagles — the other receivers taken in the top 10 of this past year’s draft. Of the three wide receivers, it’s Waddle who has the first crack of breaking one of the league’s prestigious rookie records.
Waddle has 96 catches on the season, just six receptions away from passing Boldin’s rookie record of 101. The Dolphins wide receiver passed Michael Thomas to move into second place on the rookie receptions list Monday night, finishing with 10 catches for 92 yards and a touchdown in Miami’s 20-3 win over the Saints.
“As far as importance, I wouldn’t say it’s like something I got my mind focused on,” Waddle said, via NFL.com. “I’m all for it as long as it comes with some wins. It would obviously be pretty cool, cause NFL is a special league so anything in this league to have a record in is always big.”
Waddle has 96 catches for 941 yards and five touchdowns on the season, leading all rookies in receptions and is tied for sixth in the NFL in that category. He trails only Ja’Marr Chase and Kyle Pitts in receiving yards amongst rookies and is tied for third amongst rookies in touchdown catches (trailing only Chase and Pat Freiermuth).
Waddle has 36 catches for 384 yards and two touchdowns over his last four games, a huge reason why the Dolphins have won seven straight games and emerged as the No. 7 seed in the AFC playoff race.
“He’s done a really good job,” Dolphins quarterback Tua Tagovailoa said. “You can just see his development within his understanding of coverages, his understanding of getting open fast against man coverage and then blitz-man, and so forth. I think he’s done a great job for us.”