Top 25 NFL wide receivers of the 21st century

BALTIMORE, MD – OCTOBER 10: Derrick Mason #85 of the Baltimore Ravens runs the ball during a game against the Denver Broncos at M&T Bank Stadium on October 10, 2010 in Baltimore, Maryland. The players wore pink shirts to recognize Breast Cancer Awareness Month. The crows beat the Broncos 31-17. (Photo by Larry French / Getty Images)

The 2000s and 2010s were the decade of receivers. With so many appearances and disappearances, who’s been the best since the turn of the century?

The new millennium has brought about a change in wide receiver placement. The era of staged end-of-region celebrations and loud, trashy playwrights on the belt has been ushered in by some of the best to ever play in the position.

As the NFL transitioned more into the passing leagues of today, wide receivers became more premium in offenses, and many of the best receivers of all time have made a name for themselves in the space of this time. Here are the best wide receivers of the 21st century.

Who is the best receiver of the 21st century?

25. Derrick Mason

Derrick Mason is ageless. Whether it was in the early 2000s with Tennessee or in the late 200s and early 2010s with Baltimore, the Mason is a reliable target that is always in production.

Mason entered the new millennium as one of Steve McNair’s hunted targets for the Titans. He caught 63 passes in 2000 from 895 yards and five touchdowns, but that’s when it comes to returning to where he originally shined. He was named a First-Team All-Pro for his contributions as a returning professional athlete. He led the NFL in punt returns and punt returns, returning one for a touchdown.

The Titans realized that Mason was really great when they got the ball in his hand, and they started attacking more. He had five consecutive seasons receiving 1,000 yards from 2001-05. He earned his first Pro Bowl bid as a receiver in 2003. He caught 95 1,303-foot passes and 8 touchdowns throughout the year. In 2004, he had another season with more than 90 hits, making 96 passes from under 1,200 metres.

Mason arrived in Baltimore in 2005, and had a late-career revival with Raven. From 2007-09, he had 3 consecutive seasons of 1,000 yards to have 8 goals in his career. At 36 in 2010, he had 61 passes for 802 yards and seven touchdowns. Mason retired with 943 receptions and over 12,000 yards received. While he may not be a Hall of Famer, his longevity and consistency have earned him a very respectable career.

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James Brien

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