This past weekend, Jerry Rice, who is considered by most to be the greatest wide receiver in the history of the NFL, was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
As great as he was, Rice certainly didn’t come to own pretty much every major statistical receiving record on his own.
In fact, the quarterbacks whose passes Rice was catching throughout his immaculate career were some of the best signal callers of their generation and beyond.
There’s little doubt that Rice was probably the best receiver ever to play the game, but catching passes from the likes of Montana, Young, and Gannon only enhanced his greatness.
In the NFL, there are few relationships that are as important as the quarterback-receiver dynamic.
This certainly explains why the best-of-the-best at both of these positions were either throwing the ball to great receivers or catching the ball from a great quarterback.
Of course it’s entirely possible for a great quarterback to make average receivers into very good players, and vice-versa.
But for the most part, it’s a two way street; quarterbacks make their receivers better, and receivers make their quarterbacks better.
Over the years, as these players get to know each other’s tendencies, practice habits, strengths, and weaknesses, they form a bond which makes both players even better.
The quarterback-receiver duos on this list are those who have the potential to turn into great connections for many years to come, but simply haven’t played enough (if at all) with each other to turn this potential into a consistent reality.
As we anxiously look forward to the 2010 NFL season more than Andy Reid awaiting his daily four-pound breakfast burrito, let’s take a look at some of the up-and-coming quarterback-receiver duos in the NFL.