Including his 14 playoff games, Carter played in 248 games, racked up 1,164 total receptions, 14,769 yards and 138 touchdowns. Quite an impressive stat line. However, the Bears were able to keep Carter under control throughout his career.
Sure there were games where he exploded, like in 1999 when he had nine catches for 141 yards and three touchdowns. But then there were other games such as in 1998 when he didn’t record a catch.
For as much as Bears fans want to rip Dave Wannstedt for his head coaching during the 90s, or more recently as a defensive coordinator, he knew how to take one of the best receivers of the decade out of the game-plan.
In his career against the Bears, including the playoffs, Carter played in 26 games, recorded 144 receptions, 1,607 yards, and ten touchdowns. He averaged just over five catches and just under 62 yards per game. He scored a touchdown two times every five games. Those don’t sound like Hall of Fame-type numbers.
Don’t get me wrong, I agree with Carter getting into the Hall of Fame, but was it because of his explosiveness as a receiver or because of his longevity and effectiveness?
He played 16 seasons, three as a member of the Philadelphia Eagles, one with the Miami Dolphins, and the rest with the Minnesota Vikings. His best seasons were from 1993-2000, recording over 1,000 yards in each of those seven seasons.
In his career, he averaged over 12.6 yards per catch. Against the Bears, he averaged just over a yard less.
Congrats to Carter for being a part of the 2013 Pro Football Hall of Fame class, but you were just average against the Bears.