NASHVILLE – Yeah, he's still got it.
Titans receiver DeAndre Hopkins reminded everyone of that on Sunday, when he proved he's still capable of being one of the NFL's elite receivers.
Again. And again. And again.
"I always want the quarterback to trust me, even if the DBs are on me and I look like I'm covered," Hopkins said after his three-touchdown day against the Falcons. "And that's what (Will Levis) did. That's what we talked about. We knew we were going to go out there and make those plays. He felt confident in me and trusted me. Obviously, I want to be there for my quarterbacks, especially a first-time starter – that helps build his confidence. It's not only me but Nick Westbrook(-Ikhine) as well. And the offensive line, you've got to thank them as well for blocking for us."
Hopkins didn't want to pat himself on the back after Sunday's 28-23 win, but others did.
And deservedly so.
Hopkins led the Titans with 128 receiving yards and three touchdowns on four catches against the Falcons, a 32.0-yard average. Hopkins scored on touchdown catches of 16, 47 and 61 yards.
In the process, he registered his first career game with at least 100 receiving yards and three touchdown receptions, his 13th career game with at least two touchdown receptions and his second career game with three touchdown receptions. His only other career game with three touchdown catches was as a member of the Houston Texans against the Kansas City Chiefs on Oct. 8, 2017.
Hopkins increased his career total to 74 touchdown receptions, which ranked fourth in the NFL since he entered the NFL in 2013 behind only Davante Adams (90), Mike Evans (86) and Antonio Brown (76). Kansas City's Travis Kelce totaled 73 prior to his Week 8 game.
He also extended his active streak to 152 consecutive games with a reception—every game he has played since he entered the NFL. It is the longest active streak in the NFL. Hopkins' streak is the fourth-longest in NFL history to begin a career behind only Marvin Harrison (190 consecutive games), Keyshawn Johnson (167) and Marshall Faulk (158).
It was a "Remember me?" type of game for Hopkins, though he's focused on what's next.
Through seven games, Hopkins has 31 catches for 504 yards and three touchdowns. He's on pace to finish the year with 75 catches for 1,224 yards with seven touchdowns.
The Titans face the Steelers in Pittsburgh on Thursday night.
"I really don't care too much of what goes on outside of things that I can't control," Hopkins said. "I trust God, I've trusted God my whole life and for me to be in the NFL playing football, I'm thankful. I really don't care about what goes on. I'm grateful to be here. I'm just thankful that I'm playing football today.
"We are trying to stack wins together right now. We've got a good team coming up. We're going against the Steelers. Not sure of the outcome today, but those guys got a good football team. And that's what we're focused on. Trying to stack wins and take it game for game, but obviously a win like today helps but it is a quick turnaround."