DeAndre Hopkins not only leads the NFL in touchdown receptions this season, he has done it with three different quarterbacks. Whether it has been Tom Savage, Deshaun Watson or T.J. Yates throwing him the ball, Hopkins has made highlight-reel worthy catches.
"He's got a skillset that allows him to do that, meaning like, big guy, good route runner, big hands, great catch radius, ability to get his feet down inbounds," quarterbacks coach Sean Ryan said. "The ball doesn't have to be pinpoint accuracy every time. He actually likes the ball away from his body. Yeah, he's probably the perfect receiver to have to work with a lot of different quarterbacks."
Hopkins has put up five games with 100-or-more yards receiving with each of Houston's three starting quarterbacks this year. A self-proclaimed perfectionist, the 2017 Pro Bowler is always working to perfect his craft. His attention to detail raises the bar for everyone around him, according to Ryan, who also coached the Odell Beckham Jr. during his tenure with the New York Giants (2007-15).
"DeAndre's catch radius is ridiculous," Ryan said. "It really is. When you have that as a quarterback, that type of ability of when a receiver can go up and get it in a huge area around him, that really helps you as a receiver. So, in that way he really excels. In my opinion, he does a really great job of that."
In the Texans 34-6 loss to Pittsburgh in Week 16, Hopkins caught a three-yard touchdown pass from Yates> Hopkins maintained possession after tipping the ball from his right hand to his left with a defender underneath him.
"Yeah, it was a great catch," head coach Bill O'Brien said. "I mean, I don't even know how to describe it. He tipped it to himself, kept his feet in bounds. He's had a phenomenal year. I think he's the best receiver in the league. I've said that before. It was a great play."
Through 15 games this season, Hopkins has 96 receptions for 1,378 receiving yards and 13 touchdown catches. He leads the NFL in touchdowns and ranks second in yards receiving behind Pittsburgh's Antonio Brown (1,533).
The Houston Texans took on the Pittsburgh Steelers on Christmas Day.