Former San Francisco 49ers and Oakland Raiders wide receiver Jerry Rice is considered by many to be the greatest ever at the position — or simply the greatest ever, period. Playing 20 NFL seasons before retiring at the age of 42 in 2004, Rice totaled some absurd numbers. He led the league in receptions twice, receiving yards six times and receiving touchdowns six times.
A big part of his greatness is not only his longevity, but how well he played at a late age. Rice caught 92 passes for 1,211 yards at the age of 40. Can anyone come close to Jerry Rice’s kind of production?
Some say that Odell Beckham Jr. is the closest in today’s NFL, putting up astounding numbers and not yet turning 25 years old. We took a look at other wide receivers in recent history who stack up well with both Rice and Beckham to see what it takes to stand toe to toe with the greatest ever.
6. Randall Cobb
Green Bay Packers wide receiver Randall Cobb may be one of the most underrated receivers in the game. While he is a solid four inches shorter than Rice, Cobb compares well physically with the legendary 49ers wideout. Prior to turning 25 years old, Cobb caught 227 passes for 3,049 yards and 25 touchdowns. Injuries have limited him in a few seasons, but when he’s healthy Cobb is an absolutely deadly weapon downfield.
People tend to look past Cobb because Aaron Rodgers is his quarterback, and there is somewhat of an unproven mythos that Rodgers can make just about anyone look like a star. While Rodgers may make those around him better, Cobb is a real talent. He just turned 27 years old and already has 4,488 career receiving yards to go along with 35 touchdowns and 366 receptions.