Philadelphia Eagles: 10 Best Receivers of All Time
The Philadelphia Eagles have had many talented pass receivers in their long history. How would you rank the Top 10 in the team's history?
This list has been assembled using six statistics:
1. Pass receiving touchdowns in a season with the Eagles
2. Pass receiving yardage in a season with the Eagles
3. Pass receptions in a season with the Eagles
4. Total career pass receiving touchdowns with the Eagles
5. Total career pass receiving yardage with the Eagles
6. Total career pass receptions with the Eagles
The career numbers were weighted twice as heavily as the single season numbers.
What do think of the results? Post a comment and share your views.
10. Fred Barnett
Fred Barnett played for the Eagles from 1990 to 1995.
He was the receiver on one of the Eagles' longest plays in team history, a 95-yard touchdown pass from Randall Cunningham in a game against the Buffalo Bills in his first season.
During his tenure with the Eagles, Barnett caught 308 passes for 4634 yards.
9. Ben Hawkins
Ben Hawkins was a third-round draft pick out of Arizona State in 1996. In his second year with the Eagles, he led the NFL in pass reception yardage with 1265 yards.
During his eight years the Eagles, Hawkins caught 261 passes for a total of 4674 yards.
8. Terrell Owens
I really wish this character had not made the list. But using the criteria established, his one outstanding year with the Eagles makes the cut.
After a spat with the San Francisco 49ers, Terrell Owens joined the Eagles in 2004. His presence helped the Eagles zoom to a 13-1 start and make it to the Super Bowl. But in a mid-December game against the Dallas Cowboys he suffered a severe ankle sprain and fractured fibula when he was horse-collared by Roy Williams.
Owens surprised and silenced his critics when his use of a hyperbaric chamber enabled him to recover enough to play in the Super Bowl. He caught nine passes for 122 yards in a heroic effort in the Eagles' loss to the New England Patriots.
The following year Owens wanted to renegotiate his contract, but things got ugly and he was essentially off the team by November.
Owens makes the list primarily because in 2004 he set—and still holds—the team record for pass-receiving touchdowns in a season, 14.
7. Brian Westbrook
Now this next one might surprise you, since Brian Westbrook was a running back. Yes, he was, and a very versatile one at that. He had demonstrated this at Villanova, where he had become the first college player to ever run for 1,000 yards and catch passes for 1,000 yards in the same season.
During his eight-year career with the Eagles, he caught 426 passes, putting him third in that category behind only Pete Retzlaff and Howard Carmichael. It turns out that he is also third in career total touchdowns at 68, behind Carmichael and Steve Van Buren.
It was very, very sad to watch his career get cut short due to repeated concussions.
6. Bobby Walston
Bobby Walston was a 14th-round draft pick out of Georgia, but lasted 12 years with the Eagles. He played on the 1960 NFL Championship Team.
Walston was a tight end and had 311 career receptions for 5363 yards.
5. Tommy McDonald--Hall of Fame
Tommy McDonald was also a member of the 1960 Championship team, and scored a touchdown in that game against the Green Bay Packers. McDonald's trademark was that he always wore short sleeves, regardless of the temperature. It gave him a better feel for the ball.
McDonald led the league twice in receptions and once in pass receiving yards. He was selected to the Pro Bowl six times and to the Football Hall of Fame.
During his eight-year career with the Eagles, he caught 287 passes for 5499 yards.
4. Pete Pihos, Hall of Fame
Pete Pihos played on the 1948 and 1949 teams that won consecutive Championship with shutouts.
He led the league in pass receiving yards three consecutive years from 1951 through 1953. Pihos was selected to the Pro Bowl six times and to the Football Hall of Fame.
During his nine seasons with the Eagles, Pihos caught 373 passes for 5619 yards and 61 touchdowns.
3. Pete Retzlaff
Pete Retzlaff never caught a pass in college. He was drafted by the Detroit Lions, but could not make the team. The Eagles acquired him after he served in the Army.
In 1958 he lead the league with 56 pass receptions. Retzlaff was a key member of the 1960 Championship team. With McDonald on one side and Retzlaff on the other, the team had a dynamic duo of receivers. Later in 1965 he was named the NFL player of the year with his 66 receptions and 10 touchdowns.
During his 11-year career with the Eagles he caught 452 passes for 7412 yards and 47 touchdowns.
2. Mike Quick
Mike Quick was the Eagles first draft pick in 1982 out of North Carolina State. Rarely has an Eagles top draft pick turned out so well. The very next year he led the NFL in pass receiving yards with an astonishing 1409, which still stands as the team record.
Quick is tied with others for the longest pass reception in NFL history at 99 yards. That play was of note since it happened in a overtime game against the Atlanta Falcons. It gave special meaning to the phrase "sudden death."
Quick was selected to the Pro Bowl five times. During his nine-year career with the Eagles he caught 363 passes for 6464 yards and 61 touchdowns.
Eagles fans still enjoyed Quick after his retirement, as he eventually became the color commentator for the radio broadcast of the games.
1. Harold Carmichael
Any way you look at it, there is no doubt that Harold Carmichael is the Eagles' top receiver of all time.
His 6' 8" frame made him a favorite target for several Eagles quarterbacks. With all the red zone difficulties this year's team has, fans yearn for a Carmichael-like receiver.
During his 13 years with the Eagles, Carmichael was selected to four Pro Bowls. In 1973, he led the league in both pass receptions and yardage. Carmichael led the team with six catches for 91 yards in the loss to the Oakland Raiders in Super Bowl XV.
During his career with the Eagles, he caught 590 passes for 8985 yards and 79 touchdowns, all three of which remain team records.
Hopefully one day the Eagles will relearn how valuable a large wide receiver can be and decide to obtain one.
You can follow Professor Bush on Twitter @Prof_Bush
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