Terrell Owens turned 36 in December. He signed only a one-year contract with the Bills that brought an uneven and ultimately disappointing season. Even as he talks of playing another two or three years in pursuit of an elusive Super Bowl ring, he recognizes that Rice's individual records are out of reach for him.
He blames — who else? — his quarterbacks.
"I know hands-down I'd be close to Jerry Rice's records if I had been with quality quarterbacks like he had," Owens said. "He had Joe Montana and he finished with Steve Young. That wasn't a dropoff.
"Say I had been with a guy like Tom Brady, Peyton Manning or Drew Brees all of my career. Are you kidding me?"
It is a sweet thought for a superstar in the twilight of a bittersweet career.