- 01/18/2011, 01:05PM ET
BigJoeWall72 said 01/18, 01:05 PM
Obviously Jerry Rice is far and away the best wide receiver in the history of the NFL, I don't think anyone would ever argue that.
So, that leaves number 2 as the best available spot in the rankings.
Whether that 2nd spot belongs to Cris Carter, Marvin Harrison, Randy Moss, Steve Largent or Don Hutson, it definitely doesn't belong to Terrell Owens.
All of those players came with tremendous amounts skill, and a few even came with some off the field issues, but no one was in the same stratosphere of causing problem like Owens.
Then you factor in the dropped passes. Terrell Owens is regularly in the top 5 in dropped passes. I've never seen such a skilled player with such stone hands.
Is T.O. very good? Yes. Is he the 2nd best receiver in the history of the NFL? No way.
Stealth_Punch said 01/19, 07:09 AM
A few comments touched on numbers vs. championships. I've always felt that circumstances as much as talent produce championships, as some years super bowls have been won by what amounts to be the healthiest team, not the most talented one. Wide receivers, in particular, should not be judged by championships,in that they have less control over their team's success than backs or quarterbacks.
That said, I'd like to use what I consider much more relevant for evaluating the wide receiver: personal stats. Other than blocking, all a WR can do is get open and make the catch, and I'd like to be able to judge this based on how well Terrell Owens has done exactly that. So, here we go:
Terrell Owens Career Standings:
Receiving Touchdowns: 2nd
Receiving Yards: 2nd
Receptions: 25 catches from 2nd
Yards from Scrimmage: 11th all time. Among receivers? 2nd
Consider the fact that he is still playing, though admittedly in the twilight of his career, and it's very hard to say anyone else could be second to Rice, especially since in every major category used to measure receivers, T.O. is second.
BigJoeWall72 said 01/19, 11:24 PM
Lots of those records can be attributed to longevity.
Here's some head-to-head action...
Don Hutson led the NFL in receiving yards 7 times. Led the NFL in receptions 8 times. Led the NFL in receiving touchdowns 9 times. Led the NFL in yards from scrimmage 3 times.
Terrell Owens only led the NFL in touchdowns 3 times, while never leading the NFL receiving yards, receptions or yards from scrimmage.
Marvin Harrison is currently second all-time in the NFL in receptions and finished his career with an average of 76.7 receiving yards per game
TO may pass Harrison in total receptions next year, but will have done it in 3 extra years, and currently has an average of 72.8 receiving yards per game (which will likely drop off more next year).
Randy Moss set the all-time single season record with 23 TD catches in 2007, and currently has an average of 0.757 TD catches per game (that includes the lost years in Oakland and 2010).
TO, while it is a pretty hefty number, averages 0.697 TD catches per game, or about a TD less than TO per season.
Any of these 3 WRs could be slotted ahead of TO in the all-time rankings.
Stealth_Punch said 01/20, 09:56 AM
Hudson leading in all of those categories is like saying Jim Brown led in all categories while he played. They're great numbers from great players, but where was the competition? Name even 5 other GREAT receivers, statistically, who played in that era. And for a receiver, his numbers were driven as much from the offense used as they were from his ability. Also, what were the actual numbers? 5 of T.O.'s seasons were better than Hudson's best one.
Marvin Harrison caught more balls almost every year, but let's look at the quarterbacking each has seen in their careers:
Owens: Young, Garcia, McNabb, Romo, Losman/Fitzpatrick, Palmer. Rarely was he matched with one while in the prime of their careers.
Harrison: Peyton Manning...
Owens has consistently made the most of his opportunities, being among the top 10 in yards and/or receptions in 6 different years, while spending 3 or more years in one offense only twice in his career. If longevity helping produce higher statistics is a bad thing, somebody better go tell Jerry Rice he's no Marvin Harrison either...any volunteers?
BigJoeWall72 said 01/20, 11:08 PM
There is a reason that TO has played with so many different QBs, and has had to play on so many different teams... Unless playing for a contract, he has destroyed each locker room that he has been a part of. He consistently whines about not getting the ball enough, or not being used correctly in the passing game, or any number of other things that he has complained about over the course of his career. He has forced himself off of every team he has been successful with, even though, as you pointed out, he was on his way to ranking second all-time in a few NFL receiving statistics.
There are multiple wide receivers that have racked up tons of numbers, both for a career or during individual seasons. TO is clearly among them. However, he never dominated his time in a way that a Jerry Rice or a Don Hutson or even a Marvin Harrison did.
TO is definitely one of the greatest receivers of all time, but he is not the 2nd greatest receiver in NFL history.
Stealth_Punch said 01/21, 09:03 AM
If you're not going to like him, you're not going to like him. I can lay out the problems each of his teams were having during his tenure there, I can show you that he was a consistent contributor for all of them (except for Buffalo... a love child of Barry Sanders and Jerry Rice couldn't help waiting for J.P. Losman to get them the ball), I can talk about the fact that he's never been arrested, that most players in the locker room tend to support him because he tells the truth, but it won't matter because the Sports Mothership has told you not to like him, and that he ruins teams.
If you appreciate a player who is the most dangerous receiver after the catch that the league has seen, a guy who is actually second in all major categories for receivers, who trains harder than anyone else in the game, who gives it all on Sunday and never takes a play off like some others on this list, who sacrifices his body on recovery times other players wouldn't dream of, (see broken leg) then you're going to agree with me.
If you believe every sensationalist story you hear, and think McNabb isn't an out of shape bum that throws at everyone's feet, By all means, pick someone else.
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