2019 Pats: Best WR Corps Ever?

BaseballJones

goalpost mover
SoSH Member
Oct 1, 2015
5,930
Ok well now that AB is with New England (I can't believe I can type that), as of this moment, here's the WR group:

Antonio Brown
Josh Gordon
Julian Edelman
Demaryius Thomas
Philip Dorsett
N'Keal Harry
Jakobi Meyers
Gunner Oslzewski

Ok so we can' put Gunner and Jakobi in the mix yet because they're so unproven. Harry we can at least put into the conversation as he was a first round pick. As we look at that WR group, has there ever been a better WR corps in the history of the NFL? Honest question.

Brown is maybe one of the five best WRs the league has ever seen. No joke. Anyone who questions that just needs to look at his pro-football-reference page and see his numbers. They're mind-blowing.

Gordon has obviously had his issues but there's no denying his incredible talent.

Edelman has been amazing for the Patriots and is coming off a dominant postseason run capped by being the Super Bowl MVP.

Thomas is older now and is coming off an injury so he's not what he once was, but again, go to his pro-football-reference page and you'll see a guy who in his prime put up eye-popping stats. The guy is still potentially really good. Especially as the #4 guy.

Harry has done nothing and is currently hurt, but he's a 1st round pick with tons of talent.

Dorsett is a very reliable veteran who proved himself to be an important and quality receiver for NE.

Has there ever been a better and/or deeper WR corps than this?
 

Euclis20

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 3, 2004
2,777
Imaginationland
The names aren't quite as big, but 2007 Pats with Moss/Welker/Stallworth/Gaffney, plus 27 year old Ben Watson at TE was pretty nice. The 99 Rams were ridiculous: Bruce/Holt/Hakim/Proehl, and Marshall Faulk led the team in receptions.
 

BaseballJones

goalpost mover
SoSH Member
Oct 1, 2015
5,930
The names aren't quite as big, but 2007 Pats with Moss/Welker/Stallworth/Gaffney, plus 27 year old Ben Watson at TE was pretty nice. The 99 Rams were ridiculous: Bruce/Holt/Hakim/Proehl, and Marshall Faulk led the team in receptions.
That Rams corps was terrific but not as good as this group.

Here's their best seasons:

Bruce (1995): 119 rec, 1781 yds, 13 td
Holt (2003): 117 rec, 1696 yds, 12 td
Hakim (1999): 36 red, 677 yds, 8 td
Proehl (1993): 65 rec, 877 yds, 7 td

Pats' top four best seasons:

Brown (2014): 129 rec, 1698 yds, 13 td
Thomas (2014): 111 rec, 1619 yds, 11 td
Edelman (2013): 105 rec, 1056 yds, 6 td
Gordon (2013): 87 rec, 1646 yds, 9 td

It's the depth that makes this Pats' group stand out. And we haven't even gotten to the #5 and #6 guys.
 

Euclis20

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 3, 2004
2,777
Imaginationland
It's hard to go by pure stats because that Pats group played in the era of the passing offense, not so much for the Rams. Additionally those Rams were a lot younger...in 99 those Rams had an average age of 25.75. That Pats group has an average age of 31.
 

Euclis20

Member
SoSH Member
Aug 3, 2004
2,777
Imaginationland

johnmd20

literally like ebola
Lifetime Member
Gold Supporter
SoSH Member
Dec 30, 2003
38,387
New York City
It's hard to pretend Thomas is going to be anything but a guy who drops a lot of passes and gets injured. So he's not really on the list of stud WRs for the Patriots. His 2014 season may as well have been in 1985.

But Brown, Edelman, and Gordon are still playing at a very very high level. This is definitely one of the top WR corps any team has had, assuming Brown doesn't go loco and Gordon can stay clean. So this is no guarantee.
 

BigSoxFan

Member
SoSH Member
May 31, 2007
31,523
Moss, Carter, Jake Reed on the Vikings. Not as deep as some of the others, but I think it’s tough to top that Big 3.
By the time Moss got there, Jake Reed was not really a factor. Obviously, tough to top Moss/Carter. They were basically the perfect combo.
 

E5 Yaz

Transcends message boarding
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Apr 25, 2002
60,615
Oregon
what's the internet equivalent of "if games were played on paper"?
 

scottyno

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 7, 2008
4,900
It won't change the overall outlook that much, but I think it's pretty unlikely they actually have all 8 of those guys once they officially sign Brown and have to release someone
 

Old Fart Tree

the maven of meat
Lifetime Member
SoSH Member
Jan 10, 2001
7,812
The Yay Area
I mean, huge question as to how long they can keep Gordon and or Brown on the straight and narrow. This wr corps looked shitty a month ago, insanely good today, but could go right back to mediocre or worse if Gordon and brown can’t keep their heads right. Fingers crossed!
 

Kliq

Member
SoSH Member
Mar 31, 2013
10,016
I think people are being a little to cute with this; I like that Brady has plenty of weapons but let's be realistic; Brown and Gordon are complete unknowns. Brown has had a HoF career but also is in the middle of one of the all-time bizarre public sagas we have seen in NFL history. Gordon has plenty of talent, but has put it all together for exactly one season, and that was six years ago. Moss had more TDs in 2017 than Gordon has in his entire career. Thomas once had some big years, but let's not pretend he isn't a guy that barely made the roster.

I think the 2007 group alone blows these guys out of the water; Moss was the most gifted receiver ever and he was at the peak of his powers in that one, charmed season. I love Edelman, and I'd rather have him in a playoff game, but Welker was a better, more prolific receiver during his tenure in New England. Stallworth was a good deep threat and Gaffney was a fine fourth guy.

Other teams that came to mind were the aforementioned Rams team; the 2004 Colts (Two HoF level players in their prime in Harrison and Wayne, plus Stokely who had over 1,000 yards), the 2008 Cardinals (Fitzgerald and Boldin in their prime, Steve Breaston over 1,000 yards as well) and the 2015 Broncos (ironically, Thomas, Decker and Welker.)
 

Al Zarilla

Member
SoSH Member
Dec 8, 2005
49,757
San Andreas Fault
Swann and Stallworth for the 70s Steelers, QB Bradshaw
Fears and Hirsch for the 50s Rams, QBs van Brocklin and Waterfield
Lavelli and Speedie for the 40s, 50s Browns, QB Graham.
 

Super Nomario

Member
SoSH Member
Nov 5, 2000
12,085
Mansfield MA
Other teams that came to mind were the aforementioned Rams team; the 2004 Colts (Two HoF level players in their prime in Harrison and Wayne, plus Stokely who had over 1,000 yards)
The other two skill players on that Colts team were Edge James and Dallas Clark, both first round picks as well. Stacked O.
 

Hoya81

Member
SoSH Member
Feb 3, 2010
4,061
In hindsight the 2010 Patriots (through week 4) had:

Randy Moss
Wes Welker
Rob Gronkowski
Aaron Hernandez
Julian Edelman

Two of the biggest scoring threats in league history, two of the best inside receivers and unique move TE. While Moss was mostly done, Gronk and Hernandez still rookies and Edelman primarily a return/special teamer, its still a mind boggling collection of talent.