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The top 5 NFL wide receivers of all time

Profile Picture: Annie Moore

July 7th, 2021

A world without sports has left us with lots of time to dissect our favorite games. Debates and challenges have swirled around social media, replays of games are available, and some stars are even getting in on the action.

Buffalo Bills receiver Stefon Diggs recently asked his fellow wideouts to list their top receivers of all time, which sparked much debate.

We've accepted Diggs' challenge and have come up with a list of our own. 

5. Larry Fitzgerald

Accolades: 11x Pro Bowl, 1x All-Pro
Team: Arizona Cardinals
Years active: 2004-2020

Fitzgerald is still active, and since he joined the league in 2004, he has climbed his way into the top 15 in receptions (1,018), yardage (13,366), and touchdowns (98). He was the youngest player in NFL history to reach 1,000 receptions, and his story is still being written.

4. Terrell Owens

Accolades: Hall of Fame, 6x Pro Bowl, 5x All-Pro
Teams: San Francisco 49ers, Philadelphia Eagles, Dallas Cowboys, Buffalo Bills, Cincinnati Bengals
Years active: 1996-2010

"T.O." finished his career with 15,934 receiving yards and 153 receiving touchdowns. The six-time Pro Bowler and Hall of Famer garnered attention with his on-the-field antics, but his skill lands him a spot on any comprehensive list of the top wide receivers of all time.

3. Lance Alworth

Accolades: Hall of Fame, 7x Pro Bowl, 6x All-Pro, 1x Super Bowl champion
Teams: San Diego Chargers, Dallas Cowboys
Years active: 1962-1972

Alworth’s decorated career isn't as well known as others on this list, but his spot in the record books is indelible. He’s tied with Calvin Johnson for the most games with 200+ receiving yards. In the 1965 season, he averaged more than 110 yards and a touchdown per game and averaged more than 20 yards per catch.

2. Randy Moss

Accolades: Hall of Fame, 6x Pro Bowl, 4x All-Pro, Offensive Rookie of the Year
Teams: Minnesota Vikings, Oakland Raiders, New England Patriots, Tennessee Titans, San Francisco 49ers
Years active: 1998-2012

During Moss' rookie year, he scored 17 touchdowns. That set the stage for a remarkable career that included more than 8,000 receiving yards and 77 touchdowns in the first six years. He is the only receiver, other than Jerry Rice, with 10 seasons of 1,000 receiving yards or more.

1. Jerry Rice

Accolades: Hall of Fame, 13x Pro Bowl, 10x All-Pro, 3x Super Bowl champion, 2x Offensive Player of the Year
Teams: San Francisco 49ers, Oakland Raiders, Seattle Seahawks
Years active: 1985-2004

Jerry Rice is simply the best. He's the NFL leader in career touchdowns, receiving yards, receptions, and touchdown receptions. In 20 seasons he won three Super Bowls and went to 13 Pro Bowls.

As the best wideout in NFL history, he also belongs on the list of greatest football players of all time.


Find out who we selected for football's Mount Rushmore.

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