Wide Receivers

July 25, 2005
July 25, 2005

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July 25, 2005

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Wide Receivers

Randy Moss tops SI's rankings of elite receivers, a group that numbers about five. After that, the quality falls off with little difference among the next two dozen players. So if one of the top-tier wideouts isn't available early, fill needs at running back and quarterback, then look to pick up undervalued receivers, such as Derrick Mason. There will be plenty to choose from.

This is an article from the July 25, 2005 issue Original Layout


1.Randy Moss, Raiders59.013
2.Terrell Owens, Eagles
We're assuming disgruntled WR reports on time and reestablishes rapport with Donovan McNabb
3.Marvin Harrison, Colts69.615
4.Javon Walker, Packers86.412
5.Chad Johnson, Bengals
Coming off first Pro Bowl appearance, after career-high 95 catches as Carson Palmer's No. 1 target
6.Reggie Wayne, Colts75.612
7.Jimmy Smith, Jaguars73.35
8.Hines Ward, Steelers62.84
9.Torry Holt, Rams85.810
10Joe Horn, Saints87.411
11.Nate Burleson, Vikings62.99
12.Steve Smith, Panthers
Game-breaker ran sub-4.4 in 40 after missing most of '04 with broken leg
13.Roy Williams, Lions58.48
14.Eric Moulds, Bills65.25
15.Ashley Lelie, Broncos
Speedster ready for breakout season after averaging 20.1 yards a catch
16.Derrick Mason, Ravens73.07
17.Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals48.88
18.Andre Johnson, Texans71.46
19.Reggie Williams, Jaguars16.81
20.Muhsin Muhammad, Bears87.816
21.Darrell Jackson, Seahawks74.97
22.Anquan Boldin, Cardinals
League's top offensive rookie in '03 is fully recovered from knee injury that cost him half of last season
23.Drew Bennett, Titans77.911
24.Rod Smith, Broncos71.57
25.Eddie Kennison, Chiefs77.68
26.Tyrone Calico, Titans13.00
27.Laveranues Coles, Jets59.41
28.Santana Moss, Redskins55.95
29.Michael Jenkins, Falcons
Has shone in workouts and should replace Peerless Price as Atlanta's go-to guy
30.David Givens, Patriots58.33
31.Braylon Edwards, Browns*110.815
32.Plaxico Burress, Giants63.55
33.Michael Clayton, Bucs74.67
34.Chris Chambers, Dolphins59.97
35.Keenan McCardell, Chargers56.11
36.Mike Williams, Lions*101.116
37.Lee Evans, Bills52.79
38.Isaac Bruce, Rams
TDs fell off last season, and now the emerging Kevin Curtis may cut into his receptions
39.Eric Parker, Chargers46.04
40.Jerry Porter, Raiders62.49
41.Antwaan Randle El, Steelers
Versatile player should see numbers go up as he steps into Plaxico Burress's old spot
42.Deion Branch, Patriots50.44
43.Mark Clayton, Ravens*67.48
44.Donald Driver, Packers75.59
45.Keary Colbert, Panthers50.35
46.Charles Rogers, Lions**11.03
47.Terry Glenn, Cowboys
Had the best years of his career with Drew Bledsoe as his quarterback, including his only two 1,000-yard seasons
48.T.J. Houshmandzadeh, Bengals61.14
49.Brandon Stokley, Colts67.310
50.Troy Williamson, Vikings*75.97
51.Travis Taylor, Vikings42.10
52.Keyshawn Johnson, Cowboys61.36
53.Justin McCareins, Jets48.14
54.David Terrell, Patriots
Former track standout at Virginia Tech has speed to get deep--a nice complement to rookie Braylon Edwards
55.Andre' Davis, Browns59.42
56.Donte' Stallworth, Saints
Never really fit in Chiefs' aerial circus, so no reason to think he'll excel in an inferior offense
57.Johnnie Morton, 49ers61.23
58.Antonio Bryant, Browns54.14
59.Samie Parker, Chiefs34.31
60.Kevin Curtis, Rams30.12
* Rookie (college stats) **2003 stats

Catching on Early

The six wideouts taken in the first round of the 2005 draft--Braylon Edwards, Troy Williamson, Mike Williams, Matt Jones, Mark Clayton and Roddy White--arrive with much hype, but they'll have a tough act to follow. Here's how the seven wide receivers taken in Round 1 of the '04 draft fared as rookies last season.

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Laveranues Coles and Justin McCareins, whom Heimerdinger had in Tennessee, can go deep, and here's a prediction: Wayne Chrebet, who was just about lost when he had to line up outside last year, will go back into the slot, where he's most effective, and he'll catch a lot of balls."COLOR PHOTOAL TIELEMANSCOLOR PHOTOGENE LOWER/SLINGSHOT (FITZGERALD)COLOR PHOTOMIKE heimerdingerAL PEREIRA/WIREIMAGE.COM