Once upon a time, Steve Largent was one of the NFL's elite wide receivers and no one could guard him. Holding numerous Seattle Seahawks records such as the most games started, most receiving yards, and most receptions.
The Hall of Famer and 7 time Pro Bowler, bowed out of the game in 1989 and hasn't looked back since. Today Largent is a former U.S. Congressman and has made a failed attempt for Governor of Oklahoma.
Presently, Wes Welker is among the game's most elite receivers and like Largent, he too holds records on a team. That team is the New England Patriots. Welker was a big part of New England's 18-1 run last year, capped off by his franchise record setting 112 receptions in 13 games last season. Wes was also elected to his first Pro Bowl that year.
However, there are deeper similarities then that.
Let’s look at them
Both were beneath the 6’0 plateau and undersized at the wide receiver position with Welker standing at 5’9 185 lbs and Largent at 5’10 187 lbs.
Both weren’t big names or highly touted coming out of college with #80 going as a 4th round pick and # 83 being undrafted.
Neither Wes nor Steve weren’t the quickest man out there on the field or the most flashiest, but both men possessed the most important skill of them all: they were sure-handed.
In the 5th year of Largent’s storied and Welker’s early career, both had over 1000 yards receiving, over 6 TD’s, over 60 receptions, averaged over 10 yards per catch, averaged over 70 yards per game and played in over 13 games.
Reliable really is an understatement for these two, with neither dropping more than 10 balls during that 5th season. Another showing of their dynamic skills were the fact that both receivers have averaged over 10 yards per catch in every season they’ve ever played in.
It is clear that when Wes Welker retires he will break even more New Engalnd records and may come close to achieving what Steve Largent did. As of today though, he's not even close. Steve Largent is hands down one of the game's best to ever take the field.