Saturday, February 26, 2022

Elbert Dubenion—Deep Ball Record-Holder

By John Turney
Elbert Dubenion still holds the record for highest yards per catch for players with 40 or more catches at 27.1—a mark that ma never been broken. 

Flipper Anderson averaged 26.0 on 44 grabs in 1989 but it is really something of a relic, a pure deep threat. 
Chart credit: Pro Football Reference

26.8 yards per catch in 1969

Fourth on the list, 25.9 average in 1976

We used to love these guys, 25-yards a catch, 22.0 yards a catch, anything over twenty was impressive. It's just one of those things that are gone forever. The closest we've had recently is DeSean Jackson, really. 

Sure, today's players could do it but they catch way too many short passes and with coverages as they are teams pay a premium to stop the long passes to give up some yards on short passes.

So, here's to Golden Wheels Dubinion—The best of an extinct player—The Deep Threat. And mentions to Harlon Hill, Bob Hayes, Paul Warfield, Homer Jones and so many more. 

What fun they were. 

1 comment:

  1. Great list guys ...

    Interesting that Jackson is the only receiver on this list after the 1995 season.

    Surprised that only Harlon Hill, Homer Jones and Stanley Morgan made the list twice. Howton almost made the list twice in 1956 but didnt average 22 yrds per catch that year. Had he maintained his averages another four seasons however, would have easily made the HOF and STILL should be elected.

    Benton in 1945, Hirsch in 1951 and Alworth in 1965 are the only ones to average over 114 yrds per game. Impressive with two of them winning championships and all of them going to the big dance.

    Though all these receivers had over 40 receptions, Kavanaugh for the Bears had an impressive 1947 season with 32 catches for 818 yrds, 13 TDs and 25.6 yards per catch. Had he went over 800 yards at least four more times in his career, would have a much better HOF case.
    He still averaged 22 yrds per catch his career.

    Bob Hayes was close as well for two seasons(1970/71) but didnt have 40 catches. His 1965 season though, was almost 22 yrds per catch.

    He petered out after only four seasons but Daryl Turner of the Seahawks between 1984-87 was a great deep threat.