The Greatest Linebackers of All Time Football Players (American)
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The Greatest Linebackers of All Time

List Criteria: Only include linebackers based on their on-field accomplishments

The greatest linebackers of all time are not only the best NFL players to ever play the linebacker position but also some of the most respected and most feared football players of all time. These all-time greats have electrified crowds with their energy and leadership and delivered on the field as some of the NFL's best defensive players ever.

It's hard to claim that anyone other than the great Lawrence Taylor is the best linebacker ever. He made an immeasurable impact on the game, changing it for decades to follow and becoming the star of the league which at that time was dominated by quarterbacks. His explosiveness and raw power was in most cases simply unstoppable and easily qualifies him as one of the top 10 NFL linebackers of all time.

That said, there are plenty of other great linebackers who each had stellar careers of their own. The likes of Dick Butkus, who terrorized offenses during his nine years with the Chicago Bears, Ray Lewis, who served as a perfect combination of talent and heart during his memorable time with the Baltimore Ravens, and Junior Seau, who recorded over 100 tackles for six seasons straight and earned 12 Pro Bowl selections, are all firmly among the best NFL linebackers of all time.

While they don't always get the same level of attention that other positions do, famous linebackers are some of the toughest, smartest, and most hard working players on any NFL team. Have an NFL linebacker that you adore? Vote for your favorite NFL linebackers below, re-rank this list your way, or add any not listed. Then, head over and vote for the greatest tight ends of all time and the greatest NFL punters of all time too!
  • 19 ReRanks
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  1. 1
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    the people's #1 Linebacker

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  2. 2
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    most listed Linebacker, Center

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  3. 3
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    Linebacker

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  4. 4
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    Linebacker

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  5. 5
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  6. 6
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    Linebacker

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  7. 7
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    Linebacker

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  8. 8
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    Linebacker

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  9. 9
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    Linebacker

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  10. 10
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    Linebacker

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    Linebacker

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  12. 12
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    Linebacker

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  13. 13
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    Linebacker, Center

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  14. 14
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    ranked low on reranks & added by bojanthebest Linebacker

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  15. 15
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    Defensive end, Linebacker, Defensive lineman

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  16. 16
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    Linebacker

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  17. 17
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    added by noahjacobs1 Linebacker

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  18. 18
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    Linebacker

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  19. 19
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    Defensive end, Linebacker

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  20. 20
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks Linebacker

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  21. 21
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    added by ChangesDownClub Return specialist, Wide receiver

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  22. 22
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks Linebacker

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  23. 23
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    added by wiabux Defensive end, Linebacker

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  24. 24
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    ranked low on reranks & added by EthanWalker Linebacker, Middle Linebacker

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  25. 25
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    Offensive Lineman, Guard, Linebacker

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  26. 26
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  27. 27
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks Linebacker

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  28. 28
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    ranked low on reranks & added by TehSauce

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  29. 29
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    Linebacker

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  30. 30
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    added by ChangesDownClub

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  31. 31
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    Linebacker

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  32. 32
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    added by wiabux Defensive end, Linebacker, Defensive lineman

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  33. 33
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    Linebacker

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  34. 34
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    Linebacker

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  35. 35
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    Linebacker, Center

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  36. 36
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    Linebacker

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  37. 37
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    added by TehSauce Linebacker

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  38. 38
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    added by stokified Outside Linebacker, Defensive end

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  39. 39
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    added by wiabux Linebacker

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  40. 40
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks Linebacker

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  41. 41
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    often listed & added by RobSpencer Linebacker, Placekicker

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  42. 42
    Up 151
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    ranked low on reranks & added by megatron81calvin Outside Linebacker

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  43. 43
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    added by Biscuit420 Linebacker

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  44. 44
    Up 85
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    added by quantum.svcs Linebacker

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  45. 45
    Up 74
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    added by ShaneAdkins Linebacker

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  46. 46
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    added by PaulMaisonneuve Wilbur Marshall

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  47. 47
    Up 46
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    added by RobSpencer

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  48. 48
    Up 34
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    added by RobSpencer Linebacker

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  49. 49
    Up 61
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    added by TehSauce Linebacker

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  50. 50
    Up 32
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    added by RobSpencer Linebacker

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