If you are one of those people such as myself who picked up Chargers rookie wide receiver Keenan Allen around Week 4 or 5 last season, you were rewarded handsomely. Allen caught 68 passes for more than 1,000 yards and eight touchdowns from Week 4 on. By season's end, he was a very solid WR2 in 12-team leagues. Of course, now we expect the 21-year-old player to improve upon those numbers as he gains experience. But perhaps that won't be the case, according to ESPN NFL Insider Matt Williamson.
When Williamson was asked about Allen on Monday, he said: "As much as I like Allen, to ask him to improve dramatically in one season may be asking too much.
"He's a really good receiver, but he does not have the athletic ability of an A.J. Green or a Julio Jones. He could be close to his ceiling already."
It's not a negative assessment. Williamson is right: Players such as Green and Jones have more long-term upside because they are such special athletes. Allen wasn't blessed with breakaway speed, but it looks like he already has a good handle on what he does best: Outstanding route-running, soft hands, great body control while going up for the ball.
So, we may never see Allen top 1,500 yards and score 12-15 times. But what's wrong with what Allen did last year? I'll take those stats again. He is a top-20 fantasy WR who should still see plenty of targets and haul in plenty of passes from Philip Rivers.