ARIZONA CARDINALS

Cardinals’ Fitzgerald lands on PFF’s list of NFL’s best players over 30

Jun 2, 2017, 8:02 AM
In this Oct. 17, 2016, file photo, Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald (11) speaks aft...

In this Oct. 17, 2016, file photo, Arizona Cardinals wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald (11) speaks after an NFL football game against the New York Jets, in Glendale, Ariz. Fitzgerald, Miami's Mike Pouncey and the New York Jets' Brandon Marshall are among the 32 players eligible for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award.

(11)

It’s got to happen at some point, right?

Larry Fitzgerald has to slow down.

Or does he?

The 33-year-old Cardinals receiver led the league with 107 catches last year — the second time he’s accomplished the feat and the first time since 2005, when he was 22 years old and in his second season. Despite his yards per catch mark being the lowest in his career, Fitzgerald still managed to eclipse the 1,000-yard mark for the eighth time in his career and garnered Pro Bowl honors for the 10th time.

And, he’s coming back for at least one more season.

With that level of production, it’s not surprising to see Fitzgerald’s name on Pro Football Focus’ list of the league’s best offensive players over the age of 30. Fitzgerald was one of three receivers named, along with San Francisco’s Pierre Garcon and Green Bay’s Jordy Nelson.

While every year there are speculations regarding Fitzgerald’s decline and expectations regarding other Arizona receivers stepping up, he still remains the Cardinals’ top pass-catcher even though he had to transition from an outside receiver to a slot receiver over the years. As a matter of fact, Fitzgerald has become one of the most frequently used slot receivers in the league as his 63 receptions were tied with Julian Edelman for the second most catches from the slot. In addition, Fitzgerald ranked among the top 10 receivers in eight of the last 11 seasons, including 2016.

Fitzgerald is third on the NFL’s all-time list with 1,125 catches — behind only Jerry Rice and Tony Gonzalez — as he enters the 2017 season, his 14th in the league.

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