NFL Rookie Wide Receiver Jinx: Fact or Fiction?


Published: April 13, 2009


... their rookie season in the NFL.

Many fantasy football team owners acknowledge this perception, and downgrade rookie receivers on their draft boards accordingly.

This topic raises some interesting questions. What are the expectations placed on highly touted wide receivers when they enter the NFL, and is this rookie wide receiver jinx fact or fiction?

When less successful NFL teams draft a player in a “need” position during the first few rounds of the draft, the expectation is that this player will step in as a starter and immediately produce fantastic statistics.

In contrast, the more successful NFL playoff teams, with fewer holes to fill, may be drafting to add depth to the team and have the player eventually take over for a veteran starter. The immediate expectations of rookies on these teams aren’t as high.

To determine if the “rookie jinx” perception is fact or fiction, let’s examine the perfor...

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