Top 20 Wide Receivers of the 2000's: 20 - 11
Once again, we are setting aside our Mystery Box NFL collection and getting into the nitty-gritty of ranking players. Today let’s take a gander at our Sports Mystery Boxes instead… just kidding. Let’s look at the wide receivers that rank 20 - 11 on our list!
20. Wes Welker
Although he benefitted greatly from being tied to Tom Brady for several seasons, you still have to go out and make something of yourself and that's exactly what Walker did. He lead the NFL in receptions on 3 separate occasions and utilized his great hands and incredible route running to turn himself into an all-pro wide receiver.
19. Stefon Diggs
The final few chapters haven’t been written just yet for Stefon Diggs, but so far he has put together a pretty good book. After being a 5th round pick in 2015 by the Minnesota Vikings, Diggs put up several solid seasons including an all-time great moment in the “Minneapolis Miracle”. However, it was when he went to Buffalo that he really blossomed. In 2020 he lead the NFL in both receptions and receiving yards while following that up with another 103 receptions for 1,225 yards and 10 touchdowns in 2021.
18. Tyreek Hill
The youngest player on this list hasn’t even had his age 28 season yet, but the fastest man in the NFL has been torching defenses since the moment he entered the league. He has crossed 1,200 total yards in 4 of the past 5 seasons and has totaled 50 touchdowns in that span. He is now paired with Tua instead of Patrick Mahomes, but we all anticipate him to still produce at a similar level.
17. Anquon Boldin
Right out of the gate, Anquon Boldin hit the ground running. He won rookie of the year and continued that momentum into a 13,779 yard career. His peak may not have been quite as high as some other players, but his longevity made him a consistently good pass catching weapon.
16. Chad Johnson aka Chad Ochocinco
The former superstar receiver talked a lot of trash, but he also let his play do a lot of talking. Number 85 was a consistent force for the Bengals recording over 11,000 yards in his 11 seasons and was a lock for 1,200 yards and 8 touchdowns consistently. He never had the opportunity to play with any great quarterbacks or in any great offenses but was one of the most feared WR’s of the Mid 2000s.
15. Reggie Wayne
Getting passes from a top 3 QB of all-time doesn’t hurt things at all, but Wayne really carried his success all throughout his career. The former 1st round pick accounted for over 14,000 yards over the course of his carer and led the league in that category in the 2007 season.
14. Steve Smith
At 5’9 195 pounds, receivers of this stature do not typically produce Hall of Fame type numbers. However, Steve Smith isn’t your average receiver. Most of this career was spent with mediocre quarterback play compared to most of the players on this list, but that didn’t stop him from putting up 14,000 yards and winning the triple crown in 2005 with 103 receptions, 1563 yards and 12 touchdowns.
13. Tory Holt
One of the 2 main receiving threats for the “Greatest Show on Turf”. Holt produced no one, but two 1,600+ yard seasons and eclipsed 1,100 yards for 8 straight seasons. The 7 time pro bowl player is not currently in the hall of fame but is expected to hear his name called soon.
12. Mike Evans
Since his rookie season in 2014, Mike Evans has produced 1,000 receiving yards every single season without exception. In those 8 seasons, he has already produced 75 touchdowns and 9,301 yards. This is likely Tom Brady’s last season (we say that every year), but Evans was just fine before Brady and he will continue to ball out even after he retires.
11. DeAndre Hopkins
In only 9 seasons, DeAndre Hopkins already has over 10,000 yards and 68 touchdowns. He has already had multiple 1,500 yard seasons and multiple double-digit touchdown seasons. If he continues this pace, he will absolutely find himself inside the top 10 on this list.