Does Jerry Rice really deserve to get his number retired?
Sure, Rice is arguably the greatest blocker from the wide receiver position in NFL history. He also has caught a decent number of passes and started in three Super Bowls, but the 49ers are a pretty glorious franchise with a lot of Hall of Famers, and they should not take retiring numbers lightly.
BQ: In all honesty, why doesn't Jerry Rice get more credit for his blocking? He always tried hard, but after he reached his 30s and early 40s, Rice had to have been the best blocking receiver in the league. I love to watch and review the "little things" carefully. With the 49ers and Raiders, almost every big run took place behind Rice. In 2002, for example, I'm certain Charlie Garner would NOT have made the Pro Bowl if he didn't gain so many easy yards because of the space Rice cleared in the secondary after Garner got past the front seven. Same thing with Garrison Hearst in 1998.
Rice ROUTINELY crack blocked DEFENSIVE ENDS on sweeps. He often took a cornerback and a safety out of a play by himself because he was so smart about when and how to release a block and take on another.
With the 49ers, Rice's opposite, Terrell Owens, got a few of the big highlight-type blocks, but he missed many more blocks. With the Raiders, Tim Brown was a complete non-factor in the run game. Rice rarely knocked a guy on his rear end, but he made his blocks just about every single time.
Honestly, I would love to see what Rice's "all-purpose" yards would be if they included yards gained by a teammate directly because of his blocks. (If they can come up with some fair criteria for that, of course.) And I would love to see Rice's new "all-purpose" yards compared to that of other players.
Damn the reading comprehension in America has reached an all-time low. Goodness, fellas. If you even read one paragraph of the BQ, you should be able to clearly tell that the original question was written facetiously. This question is about why Rice doesn't get more credit for how great a blocker he was.
- whabtbobLv 69 years agoFavorite Answer
Yes, I read your entire question...and the less-than-comprehensive answers!
The best answer I have is that most football fans are ignorant of the finer aspects of the game. They think a player is great solely based on his statistics. For example, when I hear people go on about the greatest tight ends in history, they point to how many passes they caught for how many yards. Yet the majority of these players are marginal if not below-average blockers! As a major part of their job description, MY all-time tight ends would block with the same enthusiasm as Jerry Rice!
In my book, a truly outstanding individual player is a truly outstanding team player. That's what made Walter Payton a legendary player. Just like Rice, he was an outstanding blocker, but who gave him recognition for that? It's players of the caliber of Payton & Rice who despite their talent, place primary importance on the success of their teams, without caring who gets the spotlight.
We don't have statistics for blocks, so the average fan is not impressed with outstanding blocking. But I'm sure that teammates, to a man, understand the tremendous importance of doing whatever it takes to bring about the success of the team over the individual. No player in his right mind would say he "did it on his own". Fans may be ignorant, but the players know the truth.
Jerry Rice is given the utmost respect by his peers. Not just as a wide receiver, but as a complete football player. That is genuine greatness. And I'm glad that you, as the asker of this question, can appreciate that.
- PamelaLv 44 years ago
There might be an issue with this. He no doubt deserves it, as he was probably the best wide receiver to play the game. But as I remember, when they were done with him, he still wanted to play, and did infact play for the Raiders and eventually the Broncos. And I don't remember him signing back with the 49ers for one day so he could retire a niner (much in the same way the Dallas Cowboys did with Emmitt Smith) so there might be something going on there. If that's the case it's a shame, because Jerry Rice was the man...
- 9 years ago
Surely you are kidding, did someone from Fox news editing write this for you. I do not even like the guy, but he was the best receiver of his time and am hard pressed to find any better these days. I can't even fathom what he would do playing football now, since you are no longer allowed to him them, touch them, or otherwise make an effort to defend them!!!!
- Anonymous9 years ago
Of course, he is arguably the greatest Wide Receiver of all time .
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- M. DiegoLv 79 years ago
If Rice doesn't deserve his number to be retired, then nobody else does.
- 9 years ago
He is one of the greatest if not THE greatest WR ever.
- 9 years ago
nope they cant read....they clearly ate paint chips in elementary schoolSource(s): Their answers......
- WTF!Lv 59 years ago
is this even a serious question?