Colts Legendary Duo Among the Greatest in NFL History

The Indianapolis Colts had one of the most dominant wide receiver tandems the NFL has ever seen.
Aug 7, 2006; Terre Haute, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts wide receivers (83) Brandon Stokley , (87) Reggie Wayne and (88) Marvin Harrison during training camp at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, Indiana. Mandatory Credit: Jason Parkhurst-USA TODAY Sports © 2006 Jason Parkhurst
Aug 7, 2006; Terre Haute, IN, USA; Indianapolis Colts wide receivers (83) Brandon Stokley , (87) Reggie Wayne and (88) Marvin Harrison during training camp at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology in Terre Haute, Indiana. Mandatory Credit: Jason Parkhurst-USA TODAY Sports © 2006 Jason Parkhurst / Jason Parkhurst-USA TODAY Sports
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The Indianapolis Colts have a young and exciting offensive roster heading toward the beginning of the 2024 NFL season. Quarterback Anthony Richardson, running back Jonathan Taylor, and receivers Micheal Pittman Jr. and Josh Downs lead a potentially deadly attack. It just adds a bonus to the equation that head coach Shane Steichen is designing the scheme in year two of the position.

However, it's been some time since Indianapolis has had a true duo at wide receiver to punish opposing defenses. While Pittman and Downs could be next in line to be a crucial one-two punch for Indy's offense, they're still young and too early in their careers to give them that distinction. But, there was an era in Indianapolis where two receivers destroyed the league with Hall of Fame quarterback Peyton Manning. Those names are fellow Hall of Fame receiver Marvin Harrison and current Colts wide receivers coach, Reggie Wayne.

In a recent article from NFL writer Marcus Mosher of 33rd Team, he breaks down the 11 deadliest wide receiver duos in the history of the NFL. Harrison and Wayne, unsurprisingly, are in the top five (fourth). Here's Mosher's breakdown on the Indianapolis legends.

Peyton Manning was the best quarterback of the 2000s, and this receiving duo is a big reason. In their eight seasons together, the tandem recorded 17,155 receiving yards and 134 touchdowns. It’s also worth noting that by the time Reggie Wayne was drafted in 2001, Marvin Harrison was already 29 years old. Yet, this duo produced yearly totals that we have never seen before.

Marcus Mosher | 33rd Team

Mosher says something many Colts fans may disagree with, that a massive reason Manning found so much success was due to these two at receiver. However, he's 100% correct.

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While Manning was the orchestrator, conductor, fuel, and engineer of the Colts' offensive train, Harrison and Wayne were the wheels and the track for the attack, giving Manning sure-fire targets to hit on either side of the field with his already deadly accurate passing. As Mosher points out, the duo had a ridiculous 17,155 receiving yards and 134 touchdowns in eight seasons together. For math junkies, that equates to them accounting for 2,144.36 yards and 16.76 touchdowns per season. These numbers show that Harrison and Wayne were models of consistency.

Since the two were mentioned, it's worth displaying their other-worldly career achievements, all while in a Colts uniform.

Marvin Harrison

  • 13 seasons
  • 190 games (188 starts)
  • 1,102 receptions (1,781 targets; 61.9 catch %)
  • 14,580 receiving yards
  • 128 touchdowns
  • Super Bowl XLI Champion (2006)
  • Eight-time Pro Bowler
  • Three-time First Team All-Pro
  • Colts Ring of Honor Inductee
  • NFL Hall of Fame Inductee

Reggie Wayne

  • 14 seasons
  • 211 games (197 starts)
  • 1,070 receptions (1,714 targets; 62.4 catch %)
  • 14,345 receiving yards
  • 82 touchdowns
  • Super Bowl XLI Champion (2006)
  • Six-time Pro Bowler
  • First Team All-Pro
  • Colts Ring of Honor Inductee

Players like Harrison and Wayne are generational talents that rarely come around. However, they accomplished their legendary feats in an era of football where the passing game wasn't the dominant force it is today. Pittman and Downs have a unique opportunity to carve their legacies in Indianapolis with Richardson at the helm and Steichen helping their cause. We'll see what Pittman and Downs have in store for Colts fans in the future. It's not a bad thing that they're being coached by one of the two players who dominated the NFL for over a decade.


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Drake Wally

DRAKE WALLY

Drake Wally covers the Indianapolis Colts at Horseshoe Huddle and co-hosts the Horseshoe Huddle Podcast.