The Greatest Defenders in NFL History Football Players (American)

The Greatest Defenders in NFL History

46,370 votes 4,087 voters 87,981 views 174 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Defensive players based on their on-field achievements

This list of the greatest defenders in NFL history is here to decide definitively who is the best defender in NFL history. These are beasts of men who played for some of the best sports franchises ever and were (or are) among the best NFL players of all time. These NFL legends are all here, in one place, so you can vote on the best NFL defender to ever play football.

Some of these exceptional NFL players include the legendary Dick Butkus, "Mean" Joe Greene, and hard hitter-turned-coach Mike Singletary. Whatever it is that you factor into the skills of the best NFL defenders (speed, aggression, determination, stamina), these NFL players are the best at what they do from a defensive player standpoint.

What makes a great NFL defender? Who are the best NFL defenders of all time? Who is the top NFL defender in history? You decide! Vote for the NFL players you think make the biggest impact as defensive players and vote them up to the top of this list of the greatest defenders in NFL history. If you don't see your favorite NFL defender on this top NFL defenders list, make sure to add him so others can revel in his athletic glory. So who are the best defensive players in NFL history? Vote!

Check out more lists like the best NFL players in history, the top quarterbacks, and the greatest linebackers of all time


List Photo: user uploaded image
  • 27 ReRanks
    • Women
    • Men
    • Age
    • Region
  • 2 See list ranked by
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G Options B Comments & Embed 2rerank list
  1. 1
    + 1527
    - 411

    the people's #1
    Linebacker

    ;
  2. 2
    + 1165
    - 378


    Defensive tackle, Defensive end

    ;
  3. 3
    + 1102
    - 327


    ;
  4. 4
    + 994
    - 355

    most listed
    Linebacker, Center

    ;
  5. 5
    + 906
    - 284


    Cornerback, Safety, Defensive back

    ;
  6. 6
    + 864
    - 333


    Linebacker

    ;
  7. 7
    + 1066
    - 440


    Linebacker

    ;
  8. 8
    + 715
    - 256


    ;
  9. 9
    + 623
    - 282


    ;
  10. 10
    + 679
    - 203


    ;
  11. 11
    + 624
    - 298

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks

    ;
  12. 12
    + 623
    - 265


    Linebacker

    ;
  13. 13
    + 824
    - 307


    Cornerback, Punt returner, Kickoff returner

    ;
  14. 14
    + 456
    - 165


    Cornerback

    ;
  15. 15
    + 640
    - 196


    Cornerback, Return specialist, Safety

    ;
  16. 16
    + 510
    - 202


    Linebacker

    ;
  17. 17
    + 452
    - 253


    Cornerback, Defensive back

    ;
  18. 18
    + 355
    - 262

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks

    ;
  19. 19
    + 408
    - 212


    Defensive tackle, Defensive end, Linebacker

    ;
  20. 20
    + 377
    - 229


    Defensive tackle

    ;
  21. 21
    + 392
    - 185


    Linebacker

    ;
  22. 22
    + 484
    - 205


    Free Safety

    ;
  23. 23
    + 402
    - 200


    Linebacker

    ;
  24. 24
    + 375
    - 178


    Defensive tackle, Defensive end

    ;
  25. 25
    + 318
    - 192


    Cornerback

    ;
  26. 26
    + 284
    - 182

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks
    Linebacker, Center

    ;
  27. 27
    + 433
    - 228


    Linebacker

    ;
  28. 28
    + 417
    - 211


    Defensive end

    ;
  29. 29
    + 246
    - 181

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks
    Defensive end

    ;
  30. 30
    + 311
    - 142


    Linebacker

    ;
  31. 31
    + 393
    - 93

    ranked low on reranks
    Strong Safety

    ;
  32. 32
    + 354
    - 214


    Defensive tackle, Defensive end, Tackle

    ;
  33. 33
    + 209
    - 193

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks
    Defensive end

    ;
  34. 34
    + 280
    - 151


    Safety, Defensive back

    ;
  35. 35
    + 518
    - 126

    ranked low on reranks
    Defensive end

    ;
  36. 36
    + 195
    - 171

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks
    Defensive end, Defensive lineman

    ;
  37. 37
    + 241
    - 160


    ;
  38. 38
    + 259
    - 122

    added by EthanWalker
    Cornerback

    ;
  39. 39
    + 254
    - 89

    added by marcooch761

    ;
  40. 40
    + 275
    - 116

    ranked low on reranks & added by KobeMr81
    Cornerback

    ;
  41. 41
    + 152
    - 151


    Defensive end, Linebacker, Defensive lineman

    ;
  42. 42
    + 273
    - 135

    added by EthanWalker
    Defensive end

    ;
  43. 43
    + 166
    - 164


    Linebacker

    ;
  44. 44
    + 152
    - 181


    Defensive end

    ;
  45. 45
    + 150
    - 163


    Safety, Defensive back

    ;
  46. 46
    + 187
    - 132

    added by Al Sobrante
    Cornerback, Safety

    ;
  47. 47
    + 152
    - 116


    Linebacker

    ;
  48. 48
    + 127
    - 153

    often listed & Ranked High on Reranks
    Defensive end

    ;
  49. 49
    + 180
    - 109

    added by EthanWalker
    Defensive end

    ;
  50. 50
    + 211
    - 90

    ranked low on reranks & added by marcooch761
    Outside Linebacker

    ;
175 +

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