Top 15 WRs Who Were Stuck With Bad QBs

Throughout the years the NFL has seen dozens of wide receivers who were stuck with bad quarterbacks and it has definitely impacted their careers as a result. Not everyone is lucky enough to have elite or star quarterbacks throughout their career like Jerry Rice did. His career receiving records may never be touched (although Larry Fitz took control of some playoff receiving records) because another star receiver might not have the opportunity Mr. Rice had throughout his NFL Career.

Our list is comprised of the top receivers who were stuck with bad quarterbacks so a lot of talent has made the list. When comparing stats with Jerry Rice, it seems apparent that a few of these receivers would have had the chance (and still might) to get close to the all-time records for receiving even though they had some of the worst quarterbacks in history. Just like a quarterback's projected numbers can drop with sub-par receivers, as great as a receiver may be, he still needs someone to get him the ball.

With that said, let's dive in and find out who poor quarterback play has impacted over the years in the NFL.

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13 Braylon Edwards

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Right out of the gate into the NFL, Edwards was put in a tough spot because he was drafted by the lowly (and still lowly) Cleveland Browns who have not known success in a very long time......

Despite playing with some truly awful quarterbacks, Edwards still made it halfway to the coveted 10,000 receiving yards category. Had he been a better situation with a quarterback like Tom Brady, Big Ben or either of the Mannings his career would have been significantly different.

Instead Edwards played with the likes of Trent Dilfer, Charlie Frye, Derek Anderson, Brady Quin and more....

Career Stats:

Receptions - 359

Receiving Yards -5,522

Touchdowns - 40

14. Lee Evans

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Evans came into the league and was immediately stuck with a bad quarterback and it never changed. His first year he played with an "old and on the way out" Drew Bledsoe and the quarterbacks just got worse after that.

His quarterbacks list includes J.P Losman, Kelly Holcomb, Trent Edwards, Ryan Fitzpatrick and more....

None of them were ever promising, but Fitzpatrick has proven to be a consistent QB this season. Had Evans been drafted by a team like the Colts, Patriots or Packers things would have been much different and he may still be in the league.

Career Stats:

Receptions - 381

Receiving Yards -6,008

Touchdowns - 43

13. Santana Moss

Daniel Shirey-USA TODAY Sports

Like Braylon Edwards and Evans, Moss may have been doomed from the start. However, Moss made a lot happen with the terrible group of quarterbacks he was blessed to play with. He is still playing (still with terrible quarterbacks) and has somehow made the 10,000 receiving yard mark for his career.

Moss recently came out regarding his bad luck with quarterbacks and said he feels "cursed" because he has played with more quarterbacks than years he has been in the league.

Some quarterbacks Moss was blessed to play with include (older) Mark Brunell, Jason Campbell, Patrick Ramsey, Rex Grossman, Kick Cousins, Colt McCoy and the infamous (now a safety?) Robert Griffon III.

Career Stats: Not including this year

Receptions - 732

Receiving Yards -10,283

Touchdowns - 66 (Cursed?)

12 Dwayne Bowe

Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

Why is Bowe ahead of Moss on our list you ask? Because he has played five years less than Moss, but is only 2,500 yards away from the 10,000 mark and he should be able to get there sooner, even with his unfortunate situation.

After finally having a decent quarterback (who will not throw a TD to a receiver for some reason) in Alex Smith, he is let go and decides to sign with the Browns. I do not understand the logic there, but I am sure they offered him more money. The Browns tout the worst quarterback lineup in the NFL and continue to stay below average year after year.

Unfortunately, Bowe is currently injured and has not made the field this year. Maybe when he recovers the Browns will have done a blockbuster trade and actually have a quarterback who can get him the ball.

Career Stats: Not including this year

Receptions - 532

Receiving Yards -7,155

Touchdowns - 44

11 Brandon Marshall

Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

The fact that Marshall has claimed Kyle Orton is the best quarterback he has played for says it all. It also says a lot about how Marshall feels regarding two time teammate Jay Cutler. Interesting.....maybe more to that than numbers huh?

Anyhow, Marshall has managed to have an excellent career hitting the 10,000 receiving yards mark and still playing well. He is still playing for a mediocre quarterback in Ryan Fitzpatrick, but has put up good numbers so far this season.

Some quarterbacks Marshall has played with include Jake Plummer (I think the best quarterback he played for), Jay Cutler, Chris Simms, Kyle Orton, Chad Henne, Chad Pennington, Tyler Thigpen, Matt Moore and more.....

Career Stats: Not including this year

Receptions - 803

Receiving Yards -10,171

Touchdowns - 68

10 Chad Ochocinco


Of all the players on this list Ochocinco may have had the most time with above average quarterback, like Carson Palmer (who is playing lights out this season in AZ).

However, Palmer had many off years while playing with Ochocinco.

During his first three years in the league he played with John Kitna, Akili Smith, Gus Frerotte and one season later with Ryan Fitzpatrick. If Ochocinco had an elite quarterback his entire career he could have easily put up better numbers.

His only year with an elite one was his season in New England, but Ocho's best days were behind him and his role was negligible for the Patriots.

Career Stats:

Receptions - 766

Receiving Yards -11,059

Touchdowns - 67

9 Hines Ward

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I know he played with Big Ben, but before that Ward was stuck with some terrible quarterbacks and an "old and on the way out" Kordell Stewart.

Once Big Ben grew into the quarterback he is today Ward was making a killing on defenders throughout the league and became known as one of the best run-blocking receivers in the NFL.

Before that he played with the above mentioned Kordell Stewart, Mike Tomczak, Kent Graham, Tommie Maddox, Charlie Batch and Dennis Dixon. None elite or above average.

Career Stats:

Receptions - 1,000

Receiving Yards -12,083

Touchdowns - 85

8 Jimmy Smith

via fansided.com

Smith played with Mark Brunell for more than half of his career which played a large role in the success he had on the field. Unfortunately, he also played for a number of bad quarterbacks and played on a number of bad rosters (although the same team his entire career).

Smith was awesome to watch in his prime and I will never forget the blowout game where the Jaguars scored a whopping 62 points against Dan Marino and the Dolphins back in 2000. Smith had 136 yards and 2 touchdowns that game. That may have been the best roster he ever played on going 14-2 on the season. Nothing came of it though.

Smith also played with Steve Beuelien, Johnathon Quin, Byron Leftwich and David Garrard.

Career Stats:

Receptions - 862

Receiving Yards -12,287

Touchdowns - 67

7 Steve Smith Sr.

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Smith has managed to have an incredible NFL career despite the large number of bad or average quarterbacks he has played with over the years. His best years came when he played with quarterback Jake Dehlomme and Smith has come out and said the same.

He is still playing with the Ravens and has been a dominant force on the offensive end and putting up big numbers with Joe Flaco (who I think is an average quarterback...).

But Flaco is much better than some of the quarterbacks Smith has had to endure including Chris Weinke, Rodney Peete, Vinny Testaverde, David Carr and Matt Moore.

Career Stats: Not including this year

Receptions - 944

Receiving Yards -13,635

Touchdowns - 75

6 Torry Holt

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Holt came into the NFL with a BANG creating the "greatest show on turf" with Hall of Famers Kurt Warner and Marshall Faulk which resulted in a Super Bowl win.

Unfortunately, the trio did not stay together. After three years, quarterback Kurt Warner was sent packing and the QB carousel began in St. Louis.

After that he got stuck playing with Trent Green, Marc Bulger, Jamie Martin, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Gus Frerotte, Kyle Boller, Keith Null and more.

Somehow he still put up amazing career numbers and will definitely be in the Hall of Fame thanks to his stellar career that could have been much better.

Career Stats:

Receptions - 920

Receiving Yards -13,382

Touchdowns - 74

5 Anquan Boldin

Cary Edmondson-USA TODAY Sports

Boldin was part of the AWFUL quarterback carousel in Arizona for the majority of his career playing with a large number of dreadful quarterbacks until future Hall of Famer Kurt Warner took the starting job from Matt Leinart. The one year Warner played all 16 games, the Cardinals and Boldin made it to the Super Bowl and should have won.

What also makes his rise so impressive is that he did most of it while playing alongside Larry Fitzgerald who at the same time somehow managed to keep his numbers up along with Boldin throughout the tough quarterback years.

Now Boldin is playing for yet another quarterback who is just awful this year in Colin Kaepernick. It is going to be a tough one for Boldin.

Career Stats: Not including this year

Receptions - 955

Receiving Yards -12,530

Touchdowns - 71

4 Tim Brown

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I can confidently say that if Brown had better quarterbacks throughout his stellar career he would be right on par with Jerry Rice. Unlike Rice, Brown had some below average quarterbacks his first five years into the league including Jae Schroeder, Steve Beuerlein and Todd Marinovich (anyone heard of them?).

Those first five years in my opinion truly crushed Brown's stats and are the difference between his career and the career of Jerry Rice. What if Brown had the chance to play for three future Hall of Fame quarterbacks rather than just one for only four years? (Rice played with Joe Montana, Steve Young and Rich Gannon in his career)

We will never know, but despite Brown's quarterback woes, he has put up some of the best numbers ever at the receiver position and made the 1,000, 10,000 and 100 club. (see stats below). The Hall of Fame receiver was awesome to watch.

Career Stats:

Receptions - 1,094

Receiving Yards -14,934

Touchdowns - 100

3 Cris Carter

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Cris Carter definitely played with some great quarterbacks in his career. The problem was they were young quarterbacks or old and past their prime. The two that stick out are a young Rich Gannon and an older Warren Moon. Not to mention the ever inconsistent Daunte Culpepper....

Anyhow, Carter had an awesome NFL career reaching the coveted 1,000. 10,000 and 100 club only a few receivers in history are a part of. (see stats below)

Despite playing with a large number of lousy quarterbacks including (young) Randal Cunningham, Wade Wilson, Sean Salisbury, Jim McMahon, Brad Johnson, Jeff George and more.

The best quarterbacking the Vikings got in Carter's career there was Cunningham's comeback season in 1998, when he replaced Gus Frerotte early and the Vikes went on their 15-1 tear.

Career Stats:

Receptions - 1,101

Receiving Yards -13,899

Touchdowns - 130

2 Calvin Johnson

Jake Roth-USA TODAY Sports

Calvin Johnson has literally played less than half (nearly) the years that some of the big names on our list have, yet he is already in the 10,000 yards club and still working his way to the top. At only 30 years old he has a solid 5-6 years left to improve his career and stats.

Had Johnson been drafted by a team with an elite quarterback his numbers would be incredible and he would more than likely be knocking on the Jerry Rice door toward the end of his career.

Unfortunately, he did not and has played with nothing but below average or average at best quarterbacks including Matt Stafford (slightly above average?), Jon Kitna, Dan Orlovsky, Daunte Culpepper, Shaun Hill and Drew Stanton. Luckily Stafford has been his quarterback more than the rest of them or Johnson's numbers would be much lower.

Career Stats: Not including this year

Receptions - 670

Receiving Yards -10,660

Touchdowns - 75

1 Larry Fitzgerald

Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports

Fitzgerald has established himself as one of the best receivers in NFL history and one of the best role models the NFL has ever seen. Every rookie receiver should have to watch film of Fitzgerald when they enter the league to truly see how it should be done on and off the field.

Fitz has had a tough go at quarterbacks from the start of his career and was on the same carousel as Boldin for many years. His numbers have significantly been impacted by the lack of talent at the quarterback position, but he has managed to make it happen.

At this point in his career, Fitz is looking revitalized averaging over 100 yards receiving and a touchdown per game so far this season. (He finally has a great quarterback again!)

This season should be one to remember for Fitz and the Cardinals, but for now here is a list of terrible quarterbacks Fitz has been forced to play with: Josh McCown, Shaun King, Matt Leinart, Derek Anderson, Kevin Kolb, John Skelton, Max Hall, Ryan Lindley, Brian Hoyer and even John Navarre back in the day.

I don't think anyone on this list has played with more terrible quarterbacks on such a consistent basis and still been able to prove his worth like Fitz. He is not done yet folks.

Career Stats: Not including this year

Receptions - 939

Receiving Yards -12,583

Touchdowns - 94

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