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PFF analyst ranks Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk as the 5th best wide receiver duo in the NFL

Should they be higher?

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NFC Divisional Playoffs - Dallas Cowboys v San Francisco 49ers Photo by Michael Zagaris/San Francisco 49ers/Getty Images

Pro Football Focus analyst Sam Monson released a list ranking his top ten wide receiver duos in the NFL, a list that included a pair of 49ers pass catchers. As you probably guessed, those two are Deebo Samuel and Brandon Aiyuk, who came in ranked fifth on Monson’s list.

The only duos ranked ahead of them were Miami’s Jaylen Waddle and Tyreek Hill, Cincinnati’s Ja’Marr Chase and Tee Higgins, Philadelphia’s A.J. Brown and Devonta Smith, and Dallas’s CeeDee Lamb and Brandin Cooks. Samuel and Aiyuk also notably finished ahead of the longtime Seahawks pairing of D.K. Metcalf and Tyler Lockett, who were 7th on the list.

Samuel is an established star that gained nationwide recognition for his historic 2021 season, so his name mentioned in any of these conversations should come as no surprise. However, Aiyuk’s inclusion is a refreshing change of pace considering how often his ability as a receiver has been seemingly overlooked at a national level.

There are few wide receivers in the league who are better at beating man coverage than Aiyuk, who finished top five in the NFL in both average yards after the catch and passer rating when targeted vs man coverage in the 2022 season.

Coming off a season that saw him post over 1,000 receiving yards to go along with eight touchdowns, Aiyuk will look to take the next step in what will shockingly already be his fourth year in the league. Time sure flies, doesn’t it?

While it was natural to expect some regression from the historic numbers he posted the year prior, Samuel still remains one of the preeminent weapons in all the sport when he has the ball in his hands. There are few players in the league at any position who strike fear into the hearts of defensive coordinators and defensive players alike as opponents attempt to slow down the game breaking threat he presents week after week.

For now, the great mystery remains, who will ultimately be the one throwing this duo the football when the season opener rolls around. Regardless, it's reassuring to know whoever ends up under center to start the year will be able to lean on the luxury of having two of the more dynamic players at the position catching their passes.