Larry Fitzgerald’s Statistical Dip Not As It Seems

WR Larry Fitzgerald makes a diving catch against the Seahawks
WR Larry Fitzgerald makes a diving catch against the Seahawks

Wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald had the fewest receiving yards of his career in 2018, finishing with 734 in 16 games. As players age their production tends to wane, but the 35-year-old’s statistical drop was misleading.

The Cardinals’ passing game had issues throughout the year, as the team finished last in the NFL with an average of 157.7 passing yards per contest.

Fitzgerald accounted for 24.4 percent of the team’s catches, 25.5 percent of its receiving yards and 40 percent of its touchdowns. While those rates don’t reach the lofty heights of his athletic peak, none were career lows.

Fitzgerald keeps himself in tip-top shape and his unparalleled hands have not betrayed him. He seems primed to bounce back statistically in 2019, with another 1,000-yard receiving season at age 36 a possibility in coach Kliff Kingsbury’s pass-friendly scheme.

Larry Fitzgerald's percentage of team production

Table inside Article
Year Catches Receiving Yards Receiving TD
2018 24.4% 25.5% 40.0%
2017 32.2% 31.8% 33.3%
2016 27.9% 24.7% 21.4%
2015 30.9% 26.3% 25.7%
2014 (14 games) 19.7% 20.6% 9.5%
2013 22.6% 23.8% 41.7%
2012 21.1% 26.6% 36.4%
2011 26.1% 39.6% 38.1%
2010 31.6% 38.9% 60.0%
2009 24.7% 27.2% 48.1%
2008 23.0% 30.6% 38.7%
2007 (15 games) 28.1% 34.7% 31.3%
2006 (13 games) 21.4% 25.8% 35.3%
2005 24.6% 31.8% 47.6%
2004 19.4% 27.1% 57.1%
Average 25.2% 29.1% 35.4%

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