A.J. Green of the Cincinnati Bengals came in at No. 3 on Around The League's list of the NFL's top 40 wide receivers. Teammate Leon Hall, tasked with covering the third-year star in practices, is "in awe of how talented" Green is.
If you ask Green, though, he insists he's not yet one of the league's elite receivers.
"No. I'm not there yet," Green told Pete Prisco of CBSSports.com. "This is only my third year, and I have a lot more learning to do. The biggest thing at this position is consistency -- to keep getting better each year and don't regress -- and that's my goal. I've been in the league two years, so I still have a lot of time. When I get to Year 6, maybe then I can say I'm one of those receivers."
Although Bengals quarterback Andy Dalton regressed down the stretch for a second consecutive season, Green takes the blame for not learning how to get open when teams are applying bracket coverage to take him out of the game.
This is coming from the first wide receiver in NFL history reach 100 receptions, 1,500 receiving yards and 10 touchdowns in his first 20 games.
"I'll tell you, the biggest thing I like about A.J. (is) what he's doing off the field to get ready for next year," Johnson said last week.
Asked if anyone surprised or impressed him during offseason practices, Bengals offensive coordinator Jay Gruden told Joe Danneman of WXIX-TV in Cincinnati that Green has "four or five more gears." It's a scary thought for opposing cornerbacks that the seventh player to score three times in a Pro Bowl is even harder to cover this season.
Follow Chris Wesseling on Twitter @ChrisWesseling.