TAMPA, Fla. (AP) — Tampa Bay's Mike Evans isn't satisfied with being one of the best young receivers in the NFL.
The third-year pro wants to be the best, period, and is putting in the work necessary to give himself a chance to accomplish his goal while helping second-year quarterback Jameis Winston transform the Buccaneers into playoff contenders.
"I think we have a good connection and it's going to continue to grow," Evans, tied for the NFL lead with six touchdown catches, said. "We're two good, young players trying to be great."
A 1,000-yard receiver in each of his first two pro seasons, Evans is off to another solid start with 40 receptions for 545 yards through six games.
In addition to leading the league in TD catches, he's third in receptions per game (6.7) behind A.J. Green (7.1) and Antonio Brown (6.9), as well as fifth in receiving yards per game (90.8), making him the only player to rank among top five in those three categories.
The early-season success, including a pair of TDs in last week's 34-17 victory over San Francisco , has been especially gratifying for the seventh overall pick in the 2014 draft, who spent extra time in the offseason working with Winston — both on and off the field — to improve timing and chemistry between quarterback and receiver.