Indianapolis Colts rookie wide receiver Alec Pierce has some high expectations to meet after being selected in the second round of the 2022 NFL draft.
While most of the community has tempered expectations for the Cincinnati product in Year 1, Bleacher Report’s Maurice Moton included him in his bold predictions for the 2022 season.
The key word here is “bold” so this isn’t viewed as the most likely outcome. Instead, it’s viewed as the extreme end of the spectrum when it comes to Pierce’s range of outcomes.
Regardless, part of Moton’s bold predictions for the upcoming season included Pierce winning the Offensive Rookie of the Year award where he would go over 1,200 receiving yards and double-digit touchdowns.
The 2022 rookie class doesn’t feature a quarterback who has a clear pathway to start in Week 1 or a star running back, which opens up the possibility for an unlikely candidate to win Offensive Rookie of the Year.
This group has quality wide receivers, though. As first-round picks, Drake London, Garrett Wilson, Chris Olave, Jahan Dotson and Treylon Burks may garner a lot of attention, but one can argue Indianapolis Colts rookie Alec Pierce has a better quarterback situation with Matt Ryan than any of the Day 1 wideouts. As for Jameson Williams, he may need a few weeks to get back to full speed while on the mend from a torn ACL.
At 6’3″, 211 pounds with 4.41 speed, Pierce has the physical tools to make a strong statement right out of college. He’ll play with an accurate passer in Ryan, who’s completed at least 65 percent of his passes in each of the last four seasons and thrown for at least 3,900 yards each year since 2011.
Even though the Colts have fielded a run-heavy offense with running back Jonathan Taylor over the last two seasons, Pierce should see plenty of targets in an aerial attack that only features one reliable pass-catcher in Michael Pittman Jr.
Pierce averaged at least 17 yards per reception in each of his three collegiate terms at Cincinnati. He’ll provide some big plays in Indianapolis and bring home the Offensive Rookie of the Year award with 1,200-plus yards and double-digit touchdowns.
It’s unlikely the Colts have two players go over 1,000 receiving yards in the same season. It’s not impossible, of course, but it shouldn’t be part of the expectations for the 2022 campaign.
Pierce should get his opportunities, though. He will be competing with Parris Campbell for the No. 2 wide receiver role and even though the latter is healthy and coming off of a strong spring, they drafted Pierce to be the other side of Michael Pittman Jr.’s coin.
We’ll see just how bold this prediction was when the season is over, but Pierce may be getting some hype entering training camp.