Before Cooper Kupp was claiming the Triple Crown of receiving in the NFL, he did it in FCS college football – over his entire career, that is.
The Los Angeles Rams’ All-Pro wideout, who had 145 receptions, 1,947 receiving yards and 16 touchdown catches during the 2021 regular season, was a four-time first-team All-American at Eastern Washington, totaling 428 receptions, 6,464 receiving yards and 73 TD catches to set all-time marks in each statistical category. In fact, they were three of the 15 FCS records held by Kupp when his 52-game career ended in 2016.
Some other current NFL players also hold FCS marks, including a pair who will join Kupp on Sunday with having a shot at reaching Super Bowl LVI.
Jerick McKinnon, Kansas City Chiefs
The “Jet” nickname suggests a lot about the veteran NFL running back, but he holds the FCS single-game rushing record by a quarterback. While directing Georgia Southern’s triple-option offense as a junior in 2012, he rushed for 316 yards on 34 carries in a playoff win over Central Arkansas.
Trey Lance, San Francisco 49ers
Like Kupp and 49ers starting quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo, Lance is a Walter Payton Award recipient. However, last year’s No. 3 overall draft pick out of North Dakota State is the only freshman winner in the award’s 35-year history of honoring the national offensive player of the year. In that 2019 campaign, Lance threw the most passes in an FCS season without an interception – 287.
Josh Johnson, Baltimore Ravens
While Lance has the lowest percentage of passes intercepted in a season, the well-traveled NFL veteran Johnson did it best over an FCS career (minimum 750 attempts) with a mere 1.41%, throwing 1,065 attempts with only 15 picks. The University of San Diego standout also produced the highest career passing efficiency (minimum 300 completions) in FCS history at 176.7.
Kendrick Bourne, New England Patriots (with Cooper Kupp)
All hail Cooper Kupp, of course, but Bourne joined forces with him in the same 2013-16 seasons at Eastern Washington for record-shattering success by two teammates. The two wide receivers combined for the most receptions (639 – Kupp with 428 and Bourne 211) and the most receiving yards (9,594— Kupp with 6,464 and Bourne with 3,130) in FCS history.
Javon Hargrave, Philadelphia Eagles
With South Carolina State teammate Darius Leonard (the three-time NFL All-Pro) sidelined that day, Hargrave was a terror in Bethune-Cookman’s backfield on Oct. 25, 2014, matching the FCS single-game record with six sacks. The powerful defensive tackle totaled 28 yards in losses while becoming the third player to have a half-dozen sacks in a game.
Chase Edmonds, Arizona Cardinals
The No. 5 rusher in FCS history from Fordham obliterated Lafayette on Oct. 8, 2016 with the single-game record for yards gained per rush (minimum 15 carries), averaging 21.1 with 359 yards on only 17 carries. He had five rushes of at least 25 yards, with two of his four TDs going for 74 and 67 yards.
Tarik Cohen, Chicago Bears
Only 10 FCS players have rushed for 1,000 or more yards in four different seasons, and the most recent to do so was the former North Carolina A&T All-American, who hit the century club in each of the 2013-16 campaigns. Also the No. 10 rusher in FCS history (5,619 yards), Cohen accomplished the four 1,000-yard seasons with the second-fewest carries (868).
Taylor Heinicke, Washington Football Team
The former Walter Payton Award recipient is known for his FCS single-game record 730 passing yards in Old Dominion’s win over New Hampshire on Oct. 22, 2012, but in doing so, he also set marks for passing yards in a quarter (293) and both pass attempts without an interception (79) and yards of total offense (791) in a game. Combined with a big performance against Campbell one week earlier, Heinicke owns FCS marks for passing yards (1,216) and yards of total offense (1,318) in two consecutive games.
Chris Streveler, Baltimore Ravens
In December, the former University of South Dakota standout surrendered the FCS record for passing yards in a postseason game to Walter Payton Award winner Eric Barriere of Eastern Washington, but he still holds the playoff mark for yards of total offense with 571 (520 passing and 51 rushing) against Sam Houston on Dec. 2, 2017.