London, Wilson begin wide receiver run in 2022 NFL Draft

Drake London was the first wide receiver selected in the 2022 NFL Draft.
USA Today

The NFL is a passing league. That much was evident in the early part of the 2022 NFL Draft.

After five straight defenders were selected to begin the draft, a string of four wide receivers in five picks occurred – starting with the Atlanta Falcons at No. 8.

First it was USC’s Drake London, moving across the country from Los Angeles to Atlanta. The 6-foot-4, big-bodied receiver had 88 catches for 1,084 yards in just eight games last season.

After London, the Seattle Seahawks drafted Mississippi State offensive tackle Charles Cross. Then, the receiver floodgates opened.

Ohio State’s Garrett Wilson went to the New York Jets at No. 10.

The New Orleans Saints – after they traded up with the Washington Commanders – grabbed fellow Buckeye Chris Olave.


Buckeye transfer Jameson Williams – who shined at Alabama in 2021 – was picked by the Detroit Lions at No. 12 thanks to a trade-up with the Minnesota Vikings.

In 2021 and 2020, the fourth receiver wasn’t selected until No. 20 and No. 21, respectively. Back in 2019, the fourth receiver fell all the way to No. 51 overall.

Later in the first round, the Commanders selected Penn State wideout Jahon Dotson at No. 16 and the Tennessee Titans selected Arkansas receiver Treylon Burks at No. 18. It was the first time in the common draft era that six receivers were selected in the top 20 picks.

This year’s draft, along with the previous two years, clearly represents a shift in the league. More and more talented receivers are entering the NFL at a rapid rate – a rate that only projects to continue growing.