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Jerry Rice: Calvin Johnson has a long way to go to catch me

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Jerry Rice thinks Calvin Johnson is a great player. But a long way from the greatest.

Rice told USA Today that he has heard speculation that Megatron might some day surpass Rice as the NFL’s all-time leading receiver, but Rice would like to point out that Johnson isn’t close yet.

“I think it’s great that they’re still talking about me after my career’s over. [Johnson] still has a ways to go,” Rice said. “We’re just going to let this guy continue to develop, and if he should break the majority of my records or break all my records, I’ll be the first one to congratulate him. But I know the sacrifice that you have to put into it. It takes a lot of dedication, a lot of hard work.”

Having said myself that Johnson is playing better right now than Rice ever did, I’ll also say that Rice is absolutely right that Johnson still has a long way to go before his career can match Rice’s career. Rice’s longevity was amazing: He was a consistently great player from his rookie year in 1985, all the way until 2002, when he was still one of the best receivers in the NFL at age 40. (His productivity finally went into steep decline at age 41, and he had one final, forgettable season at age 42.) The 28-year-old Johnson isn’t even halfway to Rice’s career totals and probably won’t play long enough to surpass Rice as the all-time record holder in catches, yards or touchdowns.

Still, Johnson broke Rice’s single-season receiving yards record with 1,964 yards last season, and Rice knows Johnson is great.

“I think [Johnson] has gotten so much better route running, and he doesn’t just rely on his jumping ability anymore,” Rice said. “That’s why he’s called Megatron. He’s a hell of a lot [to handle] on that football field. . . . I wish him the best. I know what type of work ethic he has. He’s a complete player.”

But still a long way from Rice, who’s regarded by many as the best player ever to play the game.

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128 Responses to “Jerry Rice: Calvin Johnson has a long way to go to catch me”
  1. h3min1230 says: Nov 13, 2013 12:51 PM

    1a and 1b.

  2. skoobyfl says: Nov 13, 2013 12:52 PM

    Obsess much ??

  3. jayniner says: Nov 13, 2013 12:52 PM

    Jerry, where are you when we need you most….

    Is 51 really too old to come out of retirement?

  4. patriotinvasion says: Nov 13, 2013 12:53 PM

    Repost this in about 10 years please when this is a legitimate topic.

  5. blackngold4life says: Nov 13, 2013 12:54 PM

    If Calvin playd back them he’d be the best WR of all time..If Rice plays in today’s NFL he’d be good but not nearly as good as Megatron..

  6. thepftpoet says: Nov 13, 2013 12:55 PM

    Top 5 WR in the NFL:

    1. Calvin Johnson
    2. A.J. Green
    3. Brandon Marshall
    4. Dez Bryant
    5. Cordarelle Patterson

  7. diehard49er says: Nov 13, 2013 12:56 PM

    What are you smoking? ” Calvin Johnson playing better than Jerry Rice ever played”. Umm check how many times Lions throw the ball compared to how many times 49ers threw the ball when Jerry played. Along with all the rule changes favoring the offense in the last 10 years. That comment is laughable at best.

  8. deangelo23hall says: Nov 13, 2013 12:59 PM

    He had a long way to go to catch Randy Moss.

    Talk to me when Megatron matches the touchdown production Moss did in his ROOKIE year (17).

  9. dublindemonszfl says: Nov 13, 2013 12:59 PM

    Different skill sets, settle it by arm wrestling.

  10. nesportsfan0428 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:01 PM

    “But I know the sacrifice that you have to put into it. It takes a lot of dedication, a lot of hard work.”

    Thats for damn sure. Every team-mate and opposing player of Rice, always talks about his insane prep work & off season work-outs.

    Jerry Rice is actually a time travelling cyborg a’la The Terminator, but instead of wiping out humanity, he thought it would be really awesome to play football instead.

  11. losntina69 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:02 PM

    Talk to me when Megatron has a real QB throwing him the ball along with a real offense that he plays in. He is sort of there now with Stafford and that offense they got, but there is no Montana throwing him the ball. Aside from Megatron who else scares you on that team?

  12. bigmike7914 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:02 PM

    Talent for talent Calvin Johnson is the greatest wide out to ever play he has the size, speed, hands, strength,and athletic abilty to do whatever you want a wide out to do, and the great part about him is that he does. Sure Calvin has a long way to go statistcally, but when it comes to talent he’s leaps and bounds ahead of Jerry Rice…

  13. mrlaloosh says: Nov 13, 2013 1:02 PM

    Cordarelle Patterson? Bwaaa-HaaaHaaaaaaaaa!!!! True ViQueen delusion.

  14. TheRealLogicalVoice says: Nov 13, 2013 1:03 PM

    Calvin Johnson is the best WR to ever suit up. If you don’t believe that, I am assuming you were a die hard fan in the 80’s and are biased. As seeing both guys play, it is pretty damn clear that Johnson is far better.

  15. ibreathefootball says: Nov 13, 2013 1:03 PM

    Calvin has Stafford throwing him the ball, Jerry had Joe Montana. Calvin’s defense has always ranked in the bottom half, Jerry’s always in the top half. Jerry’s oline was always better, Calvin’s not so much.

    And we’re wondering why he doesn’t have as many TD’s? Come on man, Megatron is better.

  16. thepftpoet says: Nov 13, 2013 1:03 PM

    Randy Moss > Calvin Johnson > Jerry Rice

  17. gohomeweeden says: Nov 13, 2013 1:04 PM

    calvin is definitely the better athlete and overall specimen but as a football player I think it is too close to call and neither argument is wrong.

  18. ray0414 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:04 PM

    obviously he has a long way to go, hes only played 6.5 years compared to 20 for rice, but hes on par. will CJ make it that far into his career with the bigger/faster/stronger defenders in this era? could jerry have survived himself thru 20 years of this bigger/stronger era? it really is hard to compare.

  19. belleby123 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:04 PM

    Isn’t anyone going to mention how much more passer friendly the league is now? We’re not seeing QBs throw for five thousand yards because they’re all the “best of all time”.

  20. gohomeweeden says: Nov 13, 2013 1:05 PM

    people ask what it would be like for LeBron to play football. all you have to do is watch calvin Johnson. he is 6 foot 5 and runs a 4.4 40 time. the debate between rice and calvin is so close though it is tough to say.

  21. briscocountyjr says: Nov 13, 2013 1:06 PM

    Why isn’t anyone bringing Crabtree into this?

  22. doe22us says: Nov 13, 2013 1:08 PM

    I doubt if Calvin is the kind of guy to hang on till age 42 right Jerry, (its like the old guy at the college bar) so dont worry your records will be safe, but there is no denying Calvin’s talent.

  23. deepfreezerob says: Nov 13, 2013 1:08 PM

    How about the QB’s that threw to them? Megatron caught a TD’S from Dan Orloaky for Pete sakes

  24. ibreathefootball says: Nov 13, 2013 1:08 PM

    All of these people saying Randy Moss is the best are trippin too. He never went across the middle one time in his life and if he did he’d get Desean Jackson’d. BOTH of my parents went to DuPont HS in Belle WV, and I got a chance to watch Randy play HS football. His high school last game he played South Charleston HS, and didnt have a single catch. Letting some 5’7″ white cornerback lock him down. It is what it is, the average fan thinks stats prove the truth when circumstances make your stats better or worse.

  25. buckybadger says: Nov 13, 2013 1:08 PM

    There in the same class whether Rice likes it or not. IMO there are three greats at the WR position that stand out over the rest. Don Hudson, Jerry Rice and Calving Johnson. They are few that could dominate the game from this position. Some others have had good years or spurts where they could but not like these 3 could.

  26. radrntn says: Nov 13, 2013 1:09 PM

    say what you want , but if you put both of these guys in their prime, and you could choose one….who would you take?

  27. lionsdraftguy says: Nov 13, 2013 1:09 PM

    Jerry was great AT THAT TIME. If you put Calvin in that era of the NFL, NO ONE would stop him, as if anyone does now.

  28. chiadam says: Nov 13, 2013 1:10 PM

    Top Three:
    1. Jerry Rice
    2. Megatron
    3. Tom Waddle (we can call him Bumble bee, in keeping with the transformer theme)

    pretty obvious.

  29. adderal says: Nov 13, 2013 1:11 PM

    Rice’s career had the whole package for regular as well as post season stats. He did have the advantage of two hall of fame qb’s but neither were know for big arms so a lot of his yards are 10 yard slants taken 80+. Not to mention db’s were allowed to murder you then. No ones gonna catch that guy.

  30. ray0414 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:11 PM

    deangelo23hall says:
    Nov 13, 2013 12:59 PM
    He had a long way to go to catch Randy Moss.

    Talk to me when Megatron matches the touchdown production Moss did in his ROOKIE year (17).

    name both players starting quarterbacks in their rookie years. also, altho moss had 17 that year, he didnt match it again for another 5-6 years.

  31. Go-Hawks! says: Nov 13, 2013 1:13 PM

    Jerry Rice set the NFL Net Yards record as a member of the Seattle Seahawks in 2004.

    He had a long and illustrious career and I’m just glad he got to play some games for my team. Many will say that was the most forgettable portion of his career. As a Seahawks fan, I’ll never forget it. Two great men wore #80 for the Seahawks. Jerry Rice was one of them. Thanks for the memories.

    Go Hawks!

  32. keepingitrealdumb says: Nov 13, 2013 1:13 PM

    rice is currently the greatest WR that ever played .. you cannot ignore the numbers. mega has the ‘potential’ to be greater than rice .. but until he _does it_, it is nothing more than potential.

    potential is potential .. but if you have not done it yet, then you have not done it .. simple as that.

  33. rambo888 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:13 PM

    Not even close Jerry Rice , proven over time he’s the best for now

  34. braceyourselffor12 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:14 PM

    As a Niner faithful Jerry will always be the G.O.A.T for the glory he helped bring to my team.

    Having said that records are meant to broken and if its Johnson or someone else then so be it and congratulations because in order to do so wouls mean beating the best.

  35. diehard49er says: Nov 13, 2013 1:17 PM

    Only Marino threw for 5k yards in the rice era. Now it seems like everyone throws for 4k. Come on its a different era. Calvin’s a great player just not at Rice level yet. Not worth even a discussion yet.

  36. Patskrieg dot com says: Nov 13, 2013 1:17 PM

    Jerry was the best. But there’s only so many times I can watch Megatron tear down the field and catch a ball in the end zone in triple coverage and not put him in the same conversation as a very passive aggressive Rice.

    I’m not sure if I ever thought I’d say this, but Jerry Rice is gradually wearing out his welcome IMO.

  37. hyzers says: Nov 13, 2013 1:18 PM

    Funny you never hear Megatron compare himself to anybody. Dez, Brandon Marshall, Jerry Rice all need to chill out on their obsession with Megatron.

  38. ray0414 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:19 PM

    deangelo23hall says:
    Nov 13, 2013 12:59 PM
    He had a long way to go to catch Randy Moss.

    Talk to me when Megatron matches the touchdown production Moss did in his ROOKIE year (17).

    name both players starting quarterbacks in their rookie years. also, altho moss had 17 that year, he didnt match it again for another 5-6 years. if you look at the career stats calvin is on pace to have better stats in virtually every category over moss if he stays healthy and can play the same amount of years.

  39. leftlaneisforpassingonly says: Nov 13, 2013 1:22 PM

    All I read is “Enough of you talking about me, let me talk about me.”.

  40. richmondbolt says: Nov 13, 2013 1:25 PM

    Defensive backs used to be able to absolutely mug wide receivers in Jerry’s hay day. And what did he do? Dominate year after year after year. Rice is the greatest of all time. Also, if Megatron ever makes it to a Super Bowl (doubt it) or even a conference championship game, we’ll see how he plays when it really matters.

  41. mrsmell says: Nov 13, 2013 1:25 PM

    It is a good sign when the greatest WR to play mentions you.

  42. kuranda84 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:25 PM

    Rice was the best WR of all time and perhaps the greatest player to ever play a sport. You look at his stats compared to ANYONE else and it is night and day. The second best WR has half the stats Rice does. What other player in any sport was ever that much better than his peers?

  43. actiondanwi says: Nov 13, 2013 1:26 PM

    Don Hutson > *

  44. cruzer1996 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:27 PM

    I get bothered by the lack of respect that Matt Stafford gets. He’s a talented QB with upper end arm talent. He’s a reason Megatron is Megatron.

  45. jvibottomline says: Nov 13, 2013 1:28 PM

    Dummies need to realize that Montana and Rice actually played less than 5 years of actual regular season games together on the field. Montana missed a bunch of games in 1985, 1986 and 1988 and Young missed a bunch too. He had guys like Kemp, Bono, Grbac throwing him the pill, and some bum that threw him a TD in Green Bay in the early years. The other thing Rice’s teams did that Johnson’s haven’t, WIN and WIN BIG!

  46. ebrownwareagle says: Nov 13, 2013 1:29 PM

    RANDY MOSS! 6’5″ 4.2 =40 52″ Vert! The SUPER FREAK! Named that for a reason. He had 23 TD with Tom Brady on double and triple coverage ijs!!!

  47. codyodea says: Nov 13, 2013 1:29 PM

    Calvin has never had to play against Deon Sanders. The league is so passer friendly now it’s not even funny. Whether you think Stafford is good or not, he throws it 50 times a game with 15-20 of those plays designed for Calvin. To anyone who says Rice couldn’t play in today’s NFL needs to their homework on just how great Rice was.

  48. Mr. Wright 212 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:32 PM

    Please don’t become a bitter old man, Jerry.

  49. newjerseygiants says: Nov 13, 2013 1:33 PM

    Well, we know that Calvin can’t dance as well as Rice can. That fact should also be considered.

  50. packerbackernj says: Nov 13, 2013 1:36 PM

    This comparison can never and should never be made. You simply can’t compare people who played two totally different games. The NFL has morphed into something totally different since Rice dominated. There is a reason the average now a days is a 4000 yard passing season for a QB. Simply put, the safety rules have completely changed the way this game is played, making it a different game. If you compare, you’re comparing apples to oranges, because you can never say how Jerry Rice would do in this glorified two hand touch, compared to the football of yesteryear, or how Calvin would do getting molested by a rod Woodson on the line.

  51. nickmiller63 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:36 PM

    I’d like a little button that says “turn off comments.” May we get a little button that says “turn off comments” please?

  52. jonbeck316 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:36 PM

    Jerry Rice is becoming more and more like Mercury Morris

  53. j1stat says: Nov 13, 2013 1:36 PM

    both of these men are phenomenal wr’s. are we comparing physical attributes or stats? I see a lot of if CJ played then? what if Jerry played now. the qb thing is a valid difference. CJ is a tremendous physical specimen but to make it sound like today’s atheletes are that much different than decades ago is getting a little carried away. hell didn’t Willie Gault run a 4.27 at age 48.

  54. crownofthehelmet says: Nov 13, 2013 1:38 PM

    Ike Taylor will make CJ look average this weekend. Antonio Brown will be the real Rice/Johnson out there.

  55. fwippel says: Nov 13, 2013 1:40 PM

    Jerry, Jerry, Jerry, please don’t go there. You are the best WR ever, and right now that is not even arguable.

    However, I wouldn’t count out the idea of CJ catching you, in like 9-10 years. But don’t wade into that pool now (or at any time), Jerry. It’s beneath you. Let your records speak for themselves.

  56. fivestarwrestling says: Nov 13, 2013 1:41 PM

    People seem to try to compare the two in terms of talent, ability, production, etc. It’s all pretty irrelevant. Comparing the numbers is pointless. The game is different now, and the teams they play on are different. The best way to compare the two is by determining Rice’s dominance over fellow receivers during his time and Johnson’s dominance over his receivers in his time. In a sense, their WAR.

    This conversation will be moot in 10 years anyways. Johnson could be the best ever in his prime, but much of the reason for his production is his physical ability, which will decline as he gets older. Rice was a route runner and could stay highly productive.

  57. greenbay4life says: Nov 13, 2013 1:42 PM

    1. Jerry Rice
    2. Don Hutson
    3. Randy Moss
    4. Calvin Johnson

    I almost thought about putting Don at the top but Rice did break all his records. You can’t argue with Hutson’s stats… back in the 30s and 40s!!! Heck they didn’t even know what a forward pass was back then!!!

  58. timmmah10 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:42 PM

    LOL – Randy Moss, as a rookie, with Randall Cunningham throwing, and Chris Carter taking away bracket coverage… performed better than CJ receiving passes from John Kitna, with Roy Williams drawing coverage on the other side? I’m flabbergasted.

  59. elway6532 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:42 PM

    Top Five WR’s all time-

    1.) Vance Johnson
    2.) Steve Largent
    3.) Chris Collinsworth
    4.) Bozo the Clown
    5.) Josh Cribbs

    IN THAT FREAKIN’ ORDER! lmao

  60. strongmackn says: Nov 13, 2013 1:44 PM

    This is like the Kobe/jordan argument. Mega is a total beaster, but until mega starts claimin rice’s records, rice is on paper the best.

  61. rnfornz says: Nov 13, 2013 1:45 PM

    Jerry Rice is the GOAT, period end of proverbial story. Like MJ, he is likely NEVER to be duplicated.
    And this from a niner hating Raider fan. Dude was ALL CLASS ALL THE TIME, and I seriously doubt he was even covered IN HIS SLEEP.

  62. lanzurrah says: Nov 13, 2013 1:46 PM

    The comments about Johnson dominating when Jerry played are LAUGHABLE…do you not realize how much easier WRs have it these days. Jerry was constantly double/bracketed in coverage and CBs/Safeties were allowed WAY more physical leeway with the WRs. The 49ers back in the day ran the ball and were up often on opponents, whereas Johnson has primarily picked up garbage yards over the years with the Lions trailing in so many games or completely abandoning the run. Jerry was better, arguably the best…and I’m neither a lions or 49er fan.

  63. lemonhead7 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:47 PM

    There is no denying that Rice had a great, long career. I hope Megatron can play that long. He would break all of his records.

    But for now, I’m just tired of Rice and C. Carter blowing their own horns all the time. You don’t hear Barry Sanders talking about how great he was and who may be better in 10 years.

    There’s something to be said about being a great and humble player.

  64. drsummeroff says: Nov 13, 2013 1:48 PM

    If these two came in the draft today, I’d take Megatron, He’s bigger, faster, stronger but with the work ethic and smarts Jerry Had. Give Calvin 2 HOF QB’s and keep him playing as long as Rice and he’d break the records. Rice had Montana, Young and Rich Gannon (at his peak) throwing to him for the majority of his career. It makes a difference, whether some of the dummies who post here want to acknowledge it or not.

  65. bobsnygiants says: Nov 13, 2013 1:56 PM

    Rice couldn’t play the way Johnson plays, Rice would be injury prone.

  66. steelersaregodsteam says: Nov 13, 2013 2:03 PM

    Hines Ward is the best ever.

  67. socalcpa7 says: Nov 13, 2013 2:06 PM

    If everyone on here were completely honest with themselves and didn’t let their team bias their decision, it’s pretty simple. If the NFL draft were tomorrow and both Calvin Johnson and Jerry Rice were 21 year olds coming out of college and we know what we know now about both of them, there is no question 90% of us would take Megatron for their team. That pretty much settles who the better receiver is.

  68. jgedgar70 says: Nov 13, 2013 2:07 PM

    Comparing any currently-playing player to any retired player is silly. We can have this debate when Megatron retires.

  69. primetimewr9 says: Nov 13, 2013 2:08 PM

    Through their first 7 years:

    Jerry Rice: 526 receptions, 9072 yds, 93 TD’s

    Calvin Johnson: 541 receptions, 8740, 63 TD’s

  70. sportnorcal says: Nov 13, 2013 2:10 PM

    Jerry is right, and Megatron is a beast.

    All your stupid ‘what-ifs’ are just that – stupid.

    The GOAT did it for TWENTY ONE years, at a position (and era) where he took a beating every week. Let’s look back at this discussion in TEN years, if CJ is nearing Jerry. He sure is the best *now*, though.

  71. bearshaterseverywhere says: Nov 13, 2013 2:14 PM

    That’s like comparing Jordan to LeBron and Jerry is right to say that.

  72. umakenosense says: Nov 13, 2013 2:14 PM

    What ever happened to the humble Jerry Rice.. Must be the concussions taking over!!!!

  73. 2ruefan says: Nov 13, 2013 2:18 PM

    I think Jerry Rice the player may have been the best receiver ever. Phenomenal talent and dedication.

    But I’m starting to get tired of his endless comments on other players and his not-so-subtle innuendo that nobody (besides him) can understand what commitment, discipline, hard work, and consistency mean.

    Get over yourself.

    You were great. You no longer play, and your blessing/observations/ratings are not needed upon the head of others.. be it Randy Moss, or Megatron or whomever else.

    You came across a lot better (mostly more humble) when you kept your mouth shut.

  74. kingokra says: Nov 13, 2013 2:23 PM

    I think Jerry is talking about Megatron catching up to the size of his head. Give it a rest, Jerry. Stop telling everyone how great you are. We get it. By the way, you should probably give those guys named Joe, Steve and Bill some credit. It’s not like you were catching passes from Blaine Gabbert.

  75. phinatic29 says: Nov 13, 2013 2:29 PM

    yeah Rice had better QB’s, but look at all the guys he had to share the ball with too……

    John Taylor, Roger Craig, Dwight Clark, Terrell Owens….. all kinds of really good players.

    Up until this year Detroit pretty much chucked to it Calvin all the time. Now Reggie Bush gets some of the underneath stuff …..

    Nobody’s career comes close to Rice @ WR that is not debatable.

    @patriotinvasion nailed it – topic needs 10-years to be relevant.

  76. siaaa says: Nov 13, 2013 2:30 PM

    Nobody will ever be better than Rice. they might get close at the end of their career but never at the middle when they’ve only played for 7 seasons. Rice was a scoring machine like no other.
    Moss was next best.

  77. allidoiswin55 says: Nov 13, 2013 2:35 PM

    Calvin is a better talent that rice but other than tha their not on the same level yet even with all Calvin has accomplished .. Rice is historically known for work ethic and persistence .did so for nearly two decades and won multiple championships.

  78. staffordsyear says: Nov 13, 2013 2:37 PM

    It seems the dreadlocked version of the early 2000s jerry rice is seeping through..stay humble jerry.

  79. superleadhead says: Nov 13, 2013 2:38 PM

    I don’t know what some of you are smoking but it’s impossible to compare the two players. The rules have completely changed. Back then you could maul a receiver within 10 yards. Now it’s 5. Then there was no defenseless receiver rule. If you caught the ball over the middle you got creamed. Then receivers got mugged down field. Now a DB has to ask a receiver for a date by proxy to avoid a PI call.
    Then there’s the QB protection rules that have changed. Just go to You Tube and look up the Marshal-Montana sack in 90. Facemask to the spine. If you did that now you’d get a penalty, fine and get called Suh.

  80. chi49 says: Nov 13, 2013 2:38 PM

    @ibreathefootball “Calvin has Stafford throwing him the ball, Jerry had Joe Montana. Calvin’s defense has always ranked in the bottom half, Jerry’s always in the top half. Jerry’s oline was always better, Calvin’s not so much.

    And we’re wondering why he doesn’t have as many TD’s? Come on man, Megatron is better.”

    ————–

    Are you trying to make a compelling case for Rice… b/c that’s what your [points/comments are doing.

    (1) Having a bad defense means you are playing catch up, that leads to more passing and more receiving yards. If you’re getting blown out it leads to prevent defenses and free garbage yards. Calvin has this, Jerry did not.

    (2) Stafford slings the ball for a TON more yards than Montana ever did. It’s MUCH easier to pass int he NFL nowadays and much easier to be a WR.

    (3) If you’re arguing Calvin is the only weapon… that means he gets more looks, the 49ers always distributed the ball b/c they had a bunch of good players which lead to less touches for Rice.

    If Calvin passes Jerry Rice’s all time yards and touchdowns by a 15-20% margin I’ll say he is better than Rice… football has become a passing game and defenses are getting watered down each year with new rules and penalties to help increase fantasy football stats and keep casual fans intrigued.

  81. smstonerock says: Nov 13, 2013 2:40 PM

    dublindemonszfl says:

    “Different skill sets, settle it by arm wrestling.”

    Ok, so I guess Calvin’s better.

  82. jhop86 says: Nov 13, 2013 2:42 PM

    If Calvin played in rices era he would be out with lots of injuries and they would not throw the ball every down if rice played in a offense like the lions he would have a field day

  83. crownofthehelmet says: Nov 13, 2013 2:44 PM

    top 5 receivers this Sunday:

    1. A. Brown
    2. E. Sanders
    3. H. Miller
    4. LeVeon Bell
    4. CJ

  84. metrocritical says: Nov 13, 2013 2:47 PM

    I tried not to get suckered into this conversation amongst football geeks but the geek in me have in to this apples and oranges debate. Arguably, Rice is the greatest football player of all time and had the body, conditioning, skill and luck to avoid serious injuries for most of his career. He also played with HoF QBs who could pass with extreme accuracy and precision, a Hall of Fame head coach who knew how to optimize the skills of his skill position players and on dominating teams in an era that was not as offense friendly. Calvin has played on bad teams with lesser caliber QBs, with poor coaches, little ground support and few complementary players around him. One can only wonder what CJ could’ve accomplished with Montana/Young throwing to him in that high efficiency offense. Equally, one can speculate how Rice would do today BUT not on this Lions team. Calvin makes Stafford more than the other way around. How about with Brady/Brees/Manning or Rogers in their prime? Those numbers would probably be even higher than what Rice accomplished in the 1980s. In the end, the statistical difference could be longevity. Given Calvin’s size and style, it’s unlikely he will last long enough to eclipse Rice’s career totals.

  85. isphet71 says: Nov 13, 2013 2:55 PM

    Calvin is the best of this generation, but Jerry is the best of all time.

    Jerry’s longevity was truly amazing; It’s too much to ask of any WR to last that long and remain that productive in today’s NFL.

  86. patriotinvasion says: Nov 13, 2013 2:56 PM

    Love Megatron’s game, but any mention of yards and stats needs to be taken with a grain of salt versus Rice’s era simply because you cannot play defense in today’s NFL.

    Look how many garbage QB’s throw for over 400 yards every other week. 20 years ago, a QB who threw for 400 yards would be the player of the week. Now 3 guys do it every other Sunday.

  87. 32assassin says: Nov 13, 2013 3:02 PM

    @ thepftpoet
    Randy Moss > Calvin Johnson > Jerry Rice
    —————————————————
    I fixed your comment

    best statistics on a SINGLE SEAON
    Randy Moss > Calvin Johnson > Jerry Rice

    BEST OVERALL, career at this point
    Jerry Rice > Calvin Johnson >Randy Moss

    BEST OVERALL TALENT
    Calvin Johnson >Randy Moss > Jerry Rice

  88. suhmonster90 says: Nov 13, 2013 3:10 PM

    He was talking about him having a long way to go to catch his records. Jerry Rice has already come out and said he thinks that Calvin is the best receiver ever.

  89. lionsdraftguy says: Nov 13, 2013 3:10 PM

    Notice how all the Niners fans want to defend Jerry? Shhhh…dont tell them that Peyton is better than Krapernick.

  90. rodgers419 says: Nov 13, 2013 3:15 PM

    The only people saying Calvin is better than Jerry Rice are 15 year old boys who started watching the nfl 3 years ago. Offense was much more restrained in Jerry’s day. Jerry’s 1800 recieving yards was a much higher percent of his teams offense than Calvins 1900.

  91. coachkilla6 says: Nov 13, 2013 3:19 PM

    At least Calvin doesn’t hawk his autograph for $300 in Las Vegas twice a month.

  92. chawk12thman says: Nov 13, 2013 3:21 PM

    If you were starting a Team from scratch and assuming you get to have one player for three years only, and you get to pick Johnson or Rice, who would you take?

    I would have to pick Johnson, even though it is a very tough call. Do you agree?

  93. favrewillplay4ever says: Nov 13, 2013 3:24 PM

    Jerry is, was, and always will be the greatest. If he played today… He would have doubled Megatron’s numbers last year. Defense played football when Jerry laced them up. Jerry did more with less than any other player. Being 6″ taller than the defensive back is not a skill!

  94. poridge1214 says: Nov 13, 2013 3:26 PM

    Pure ability doesn’t mean jack, and neither does a short sample of a career so far.

    What sets Rice apart, is that he had slightly better-than-average speed and size, but became the greatest WR to ever play the game. When you achieve that with what many consider limited abilities, then you earn the title of GOAT.

    Now it’s great that CJ was born with the genetics to give him speed, strenght and size; and to play in a time where 4 QB’s every year will near 5,000 yards passing (when up to Rice’s time it was only achieved once in history). But again, if pure ability over the short term defined greatness, then the Terrell Davis’ of the world are also the greatest of all time.

    But alas, you need to combine greatness with longevity, something very few have done. Which is why Jerry is better than CJ until CJ puts in the years.

  95. 989lions says: Nov 13, 2013 3:29 PM

    richmondbolt says:

    Nov 13, 2013 1:25 PM
    Defensive backs used to be able to absolutely mug wide receivers in Jerry’s hay day. And what did he do? Dominate year after year after year. Rice is the greatest of all time. Also, if Megatron ever makes it to a Super Bowl (doubt it) or even a conference championship game, we’ll see how he plays when it really matters.

    ————————————————
    biggest game of Calvin’s career to this point was the playoff games in 2011 vs the Saints. Let’s see the stats he put up:

    12 catches for 211 receiving yards and 2 TD’s

    it is a small sample size, but I’m going to go out on a limb and say he is as good as advertised.

  96. snaxdsp says: Nov 13, 2013 3:33 PM

    Overrated. Montana made everyone look good

  97. badmoonrison says: Nov 13, 2013 3:33 PM

    Jerry, I love ya and all you’ve accomplished, but you better give credit where credit’s due. Records were made to be broken. Thats the NFL. Accept it, Flash 80…

  98. overratedsteelerhater says: Nov 13, 2013 3:43 PM

    the rules now days favor the reciever,rice would eat up backs with this 5 yard rule of touching recievers.

  99. pack15forever says: Nov 13, 2013 3:51 PM

    blackngold4life says:
    Nov 13, 2013 12:54 PM
    If Calvin playd back them he’d be the best WR of all time..If Rice plays in today’s NFL he’d be good but not nearly as good as Megatron..

    ____________________________________

    Not sure what you’re smoking because in today’s NFL you can’t even sneeze on a receiver after more than 5 yards. Back when Rice was playing defensive backs could bump and run all the way down field. Quite the opposite, if Jerry Rice played today he would improve on all his records.

  100. donnymacjack says: Nov 13, 2013 3:55 PM

    Jerry Rice was a YAC receiver. That is what made him the greatest ever. He was fearless going across the middle in an era where guys could legally take your head off. He could take the 5 yard slant and in a blink turn it into a 50 yard touchdown. He could run the whole WR tree with precision.

    Megatron is an incredible athlete and WR. But he is more of a catch-it-wherever-it-is-thrown kind of guy. He makes the QB better because he has the height, hands, speed, and athletic ability to catch anything.

    But he’s not the YAC receiver Rice was. Nor was Rice the athlete that Calvin is. They are two different kinds of WR’s, both the best at what they are, with the skills, talent and work ethic necessary to be the best.

  101. bifftannen55 says: Nov 13, 2013 3:57 PM

    snaxdsp says:
    Nov 13, 2013 3:33 PM
    Overrated. Montana made everyone look good
    ______________________

    Sure, you probably think Rich Gannon made Jerry Rice look good too.

  102. ahs2 says: Nov 13, 2013 4:12 PM

    Ironic that the one person who could care less is…Calvin Johnson. Love the guy’s humility

  103. steeltroll says: Nov 13, 2013 4:16 PM

    What Calvin lacks in numbers he makes up for in ridiculous beast mode play. HOF first round.

  104. warhammer420 says: Nov 13, 2013 4:33 PM

    They’re a different style of receiver. CJ can go up and get a jump ball like Rice never could. While Rice was a better route runner and had better hands.

  105. lionboy23 says: Nov 13, 2013 4:34 PM

    Rice averaged 1243 yards over 18 full seasons as an effective starter. That totals 22,388 yards. (I subtracted the year he was hurt, 1997, and his last year, 2004, when he really didn’t do anything.

    I think what is most impressive about Jerry Rice is his longevity. I’m not really sure he was the greatest receiver as far as ability of all time. But he was damn good, and damn good for a LONG time.

  106. drewby79 says: Nov 13, 2013 4:46 PM

    I’m a HUGE Leo fan and I hope Calvin has a supporting cast around him that will take numbers away and make that career last as long as Calvin wants it to last. Numbers don’t mean squat, rings do and he is trying to bring that to Motown.

    Let’s start with breaking all Herman’s records, almost done, and then onward to the G.O.A.T.s records.

    However, if Calvin doesn’t break Jerry’s records, he won’t be the first. Moss and TO were supposed to do the same and couldn’t. It’s not a mark of shame. Let’s get our panties out of a bunch.

  107. borg9 says: Nov 13, 2013 4:50 PM

    Al Toon was a better receiver than Jerry Rice but injuries and concussions cut his career short.

  108. alwaters9 says: Nov 13, 2013 5:35 PM

    Different players, different NFL. Rice was great. Megatron is great.

    As a lifelong Lions fan (sufferer) I find think comparing the two at this point is useless. Rice owns many records and Calvin will take some of them by the time he is done.

    Rice probably ran better routes. Speed? Probably about even. Hands? Both good, CJ stronger. Megatron uses his size, strength and jumping ability to beat double and triple teams – Rice couldn’t come close to doing what Calvin can.

    And consider that Calvin has had basically an average John Kitna and a young and learning Matthew Stafford throwing to him. Rice had two hall of famers hitting him in stride – Montana and Young.

    The reason Rice would get my nod right now is longevity and records. But I think Megatron has more ability than Rice had and will utlimately be perceived as the best receiver ever – regardless of records.

  109. jvibottomline says: Nov 13, 2013 5:39 PM

    1987 Jerry Rice season in 12 games was the greatest season by a receiver ever. That Sunday Night game against the Browns at Candlestick was Epic. Hanford Dixon, Frank Minnifield, and Felix Wright never recovered from that night.

  110. warhammer420 says: Nov 13, 2013 5:53 PM

    On 3rd and 5, give me Rice. 3rd and 20? Give me CJ every time.

  111. lawrance4 says: Nov 13, 2013 7:51 PM

    What’s the definition of “better”?

    Rice: Better possession receiver. Better route runner. Better hands. More elusive.

    CJ: Superior speed. Superior jumping ability. Commands double coverage and game planning around.

    Rice was ultra dependable. CJ is the scary deep threat.

    To sum up… Both are outstanding and possess different abilities. That said, I don’t believe CJ will break too many of Rice’s records.

    Sincerely, A Lions fan.

  112. tjmac95 says: Nov 14, 2013 12:31 AM

    Why do people overlook Andre Johnson?? The only reason Calvin is considered the best in the NFL(which is justifiably so) is because Andre had sone injury riddled seasons a few years back, but look at the stats, andre is only 3 years away from being number 2 on the all time yardage and receptions list, most underrated player in NFL history.

  113. TBaySlim says: Nov 14, 2013 11:48 PM

    Randy Moss is the guy you want to be talking bout here all you 15-20 year old kids who didn’t see MOSS in his prime need to go back and watch youtube clips, he changed the way defenses played wide receivers, MAdden is quoted as saying the best receiver he ever saw was moss. Work ethic aside, compare the 1st 6 years of each of their careers ( calvin is just entering 7th yr.) Moss has better stats then either one of them. Oh an some one said Calvin has a better career thus far then moss did, let me know when Johnson breaks 150 tds for a career Moss is above it. Please some of you should have your comment rights revoked. I’ll say moss and rice 1A and 1b- CAlvin has a long way to go

  114. 4ever9er says: Nov 15, 2013 3:38 AM

    @blackngold4life says: Nov 13, 2013 12:54 PM

    If Calvin playd back them he’d be the best WR of all time..If Rice plays in today’s NFL he’d be good but not nearly as good as Megatron………
    You are delusional!

    The DB’s were much better back then and JR was dominate then. I’m not saying that Johnson isn’t great because he is, he’s just not Rice.
    Take the record that was broken last year, Johnson had 1900 yards and only 5 TD’s, the year that Rice set the record he had 15 and there wasn’t many jump balls

  115. 4ever9er says: Nov 15, 2013 3:49 AM

    @
    bigmike7914 says: Nov 13, 2013 1:02 PM

    Talent for talent Calvin Johnson is the greatest wide out to ever play he has the size, speed, hands, strength,and athletic abilty to do whatever you want a wide out to do, and the great part about him is that he does. Sure Calvin has a long way to go statistcally, but when it comes to talent he’s leaps and bounds ahead of Jerry Rice……………………….

    How about stay healthy????
    Johnson has 5 more good years at best!
    When he stops getting caught from behind and catching more TD’s, then maybe he can be in Rice’s category, as of now he’s just the best in his era!!!

  116. 4ever9er says: Nov 15, 2013 4:05 AM

    @TheRealLogicalVoice says: Nov 13, 2013 1:03 PM

    Calvin Johnson is the best WR to ever suit up. If you don’t believe that, I am assuming you were a die hard fan in the 80′s and are biased. As seeing both guys play, it is pretty damn clear that Johnson is far better…………………………………………….

    RealIllogicalVoice………………………………………………….
    I have seen both play and #80 get’s my vote and it’s not 9er bias.Rice could score from anywhere on the field, rushing or receiving.
    It’s all about production, while Rice wasn’t as fast as CJ is, he rarely got caught from behind, while CJ get’s caught from behind frequently.
    Rice was a better route runner, runner after the catch, blocker, scorer and had similar hands to CJ.
    CJ is just bigger and taller with similar hands to JR!!!

  117. larrydavid7000 says: Nov 15, 2013 7:03 AM

    I will take 81 from The Redskins any day over these two CLOWNS.!!!!!!!!! 80 from sf was good because of the system they ran in sf at that time. 81 was bigger,stronger and was The King of 3rd and Long.!!!!!!!! And is a HOF as well.!!!!!!!!

  118. urana55 says: Nov 15, 2013 8:51 AM

    that dude said “Tom Waddle”…..

    i surely hope that was a joke ….

  119. skins1970 says: Nov 15, 2013 1:26 PM

    No WR will ever be better then Jerry Rice IMO but this is how I rank the greatest 5 WRs I ever saw.

    1.Jerry Rice
    2.Art Monk
    3.Calvin Johnson
    4.Steve Largent
    5.Randy Moss

  120. skins1970 says: Nov 15, 2013 1:33 PM

    I just love seeing how delusional the Steelers fans are, Ike Taylor has no chance against CJ and also LOL at Hines Ward being the greatest Steeler WR? Do the names Lynn Swann and John Stallworth ring a bell to you?

  121. 4ever9er says: Nov 17, 2013 6:50 AM

    To all the defenders of Rice, I also believe that Rice is the Greatest Of All Time!
    But please stop using the argument that when Rice played you could mug or beat the receiver all the way down the field. It’s not true!
    The 5 yard rule has been in place in the NFL since the 1978 or 1979 season.

  122. ohioraider22 says: Nov 18, 2013 1:17 AM

    total 303 284(total game/games started) 1549 22895 14.8 96 197 receiving
    87 645 7.4 43 10 rushing
    Jerry Rice
    Sorry, but today’s rules do favor the receiver. They throw a flag for a simple bump now.
    I remember when they said Rice wasn’t fast enough back then. Look what he’s done.
    Here’s another stat… Strike year was 12 games. Rice had over 1000 yds and 22 td’s. 12 games people.
    This is the either the worst defenses to ever play the game or the rules are there to allow for these crazy scores/yards. 500 passing yards and you lose. See it every week. Terrible to watch.

  123. moosealiny says: Nov 18, 2013 11:47 PM

    @blackngoldforlife….
    you my fellow Steeler fan are an idiot. If Jerry rice played now a days in this league w the rules may have double the stats he retired with. This is a soft pass happy league. Wake up …get w the program. You’re an embarrassmentto Steeler fans

  124. prezmtdewcamacho says: Nov 19, 2013 4:06 AM

    Comparing Calvin to Jerry is similar to comparing Kobe to Micheal. Personally I will take the mentally and fundamentally superior player.

    You gotta think about Receiver as two positions though. You want to have a intellectual route runner with amazing hands and you want the athlete that can beat everyone deep and covert the occasional high risk play. So I’ll take both.

    When he was playing I always thought Sterling Sharpe was better than Jerry. Sharpe had that unfortunate spinal injury though. To me Sterling not only had the consistency of Rice, but the big impact ability a player like Johnson has.

    Sharpe has some impressive feats attained with the Majic man and young Farve. In his second season he lead the league in receptions (2nd in yards) over Andre Reed, Ark Monk and of course Rice. That season the Packers beat the Super Bowl scoring record breaking 49ers at the ‘Stick.

    In his whole career Rice was his teams most valuable player, based on Football-Reference.com’s valuation system, only twice. In 3 of the 6 years Sharpe played as the feature receiver of the Packers, which excludes his rookie season, his was the most valuable.

    Sharpe also has: Consecutive games with at least 4 receptions: 34. Games with at least 4 TD receptions: 2 – tied with Jerry Rice and Bob Shaw. Games with 3 TD catches: 4

    To directly contrast Sharpe and Rice is a metaphysical argument at this point, but there is enough evidence out there to compare Sharpe to Rice as one would compare Gayle Sayers to Walter Payton or Jim Rice.

  125. prezmtdewcamacho says: Nov 19, 2013 4:08 AM

    yea, Jim “I wanna be in the HoF” Rice… lol no. Of course Jim Brown.

  126. therolandobottom says: Nov 19, 2013 10:37 AM

    This discussion is dumb. Rice played against corners like Deion and Rod Woodson. Safeties like Steve Atwater, Lott and Eric Turner. These guys would maul you downfield or take your head off. CJ is in an offense loving sissified league. I doubt he could even compare to Jerry’s numbers against DBS from the 80s n 90s.

  127. jhbart001 says: Nov 19, 2013 4:32 PM

    Records are made to be broken. Jerry rice is the best receiver of all time for now but he did hang on way past his prime and padded those numbers. It is possible with the rule changes for Calvin johnson to pass jerry rice bit will he keep playing after his best days are over to do it? Who knows bit it sounds like jerry is already getting nervous about it

  128. ratbirdsrule says: Nov 20, 2013 3:32 PM

    I’d like to see Johnson playing on the teams Rice did, and see his stats at this point…and see how rice would have done in Detroit. John would be on the plus side of that battle

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