The Greatest Tight Ends of All Time

35k votes 6.1k voters 125k views 77 items tags f p @

List Criteria: Only NFL tight ends. No wide receivers or college players.

The greatest tight ends of all time are those dynamic National Football League players who have played the position better than anyone else. The tight end position is a unique one as it has evolved from a blocking player to one that focuses more on receptions meaning each of these best NFL tight ends dominated the role as it was played during their prime.

There is a reason that the Mackey Award is given out each year to the top tight end in college football. That's because John Mackey is easily the best tight end ever to play football. The now Pro Football Hall of Fame member dominated the position with the Baltimore Colts and San Diego Chargers and made the position one to recognize.

Following in Mackey's footsteps are dozens of other talented and famous tight ends such as Tony Gonzalez, the first tight end to catch over 1,000 passes, Kellen Winslow Sr. who dazzled at tight end for the San Diego Chargers, the great Mike Ditka, who before coaching or broadcasting averaged 19.2 yards per catch and notched 12 touchdowns as a rookie and Shannon Sharpe, who topped an amazing 10,000 yards over his career in Denver and Baltimore.

But the top tight ends in the NFL don't stop there. Young stars have taken the offensive position to an entire new level and fascinated fans everywhere along the way, racking up crazy stats and scoring touchdowns left and right. Rob Gronkowski of the New England Patriots is a perfect example of that as he has become the envy of other teams, fans and players with his talent.

Who do you think played the best at tight end of all time? Vote for your favorites, add any not listed or re-rank this list your way all below! Want more football rankings? Check out the greatest linebackers of all time and the greatest NFL punters of all time too!
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  • 56 ReRanks
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  • 2 See list ranked by
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  1. 1
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    the people's #1
    California Golden Bears football, Atlanta Falcons, Kansas City Chiefs

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  2. 2
    + 2,431
    - 1,083


    Arizona Wildcats football, New England Patriots

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  3. 3
    + 1,440
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    most listed
    San Diego Chargers

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  4. 4
    + 1,261
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    Denver Broncos, Baltimore Ravens, Savannah State Tigers football

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  5. 5
    + 1,117
    - 654


    Chicago Bears, Pittsburgh Panthers football, Philadelphia Eagles

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  6. 6
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    Tennessee Volunteers football, Dallas Cowboys

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    + 1,007
    - 574


    Missouri Tigers football, San Diego Chargers

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  8. 8
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    - 470


    Cleveland Browns

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  9. 9
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    added by AhmadPoloswaggoutConteh
    New Orleans Saints

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  10. 10
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    Baltimore Colts, Syracuse Orange football, San Diego Chargers

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  11. 11
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    often listed
    Phoenix Cardinals, Wyoming Cowboys football, Dallas Cowboys

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  13. 13
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    Chicago Bears, Carolina Panthers, Miami Hurricanes football

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  14. 14
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    Cleveland Browns, Philadelphia Eagles, New York Giants

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  15. 15
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  16. 16
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    ranked low on reranks
    Maryland Terrapins football, San Francisco 49ers

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  17. 17
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  18. 18
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    Indianapolis Colts, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Baltimore Ravens

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    ranked low on reranks
    Pittsburgh Steelers

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  20. 20
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    New Orleans Saints, Carolina Panthers, Miami Hurricanes football

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    St. Louis Cardinals, Dallas Cowboys

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  22. 22
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    San Francisco 49ers

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  25. 25
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    Arizona Cardinals, Arizona State Sun Devils football, Baltimore Ravens

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    ranked low on reranks & added by FrankMades
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    ranked low on reranks & added by RobSpencer

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    often listed & ranked high on reranks

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    added by slaft

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    - 50

    ranked low on reranks & added by slaft
    Texas A&M Aggies football, Chicago Bears, Dallas Cowboys

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  34. 34
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks

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  35. 35
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    ranked low on reranks
    Houston Texans

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  36. 36
    + 53
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    often listed & added by chile6880
    Atlanta Falcons, New England Patriots

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    ranked low on reranks & added by Esavi
    San Francisco 49ers, Tennessee Titans

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    added by slaft
    Washington Redskins, Utah State Aggies football

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    Cincinnati Bearcats football, Kansas City Chiefs

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    added by slaft

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    New Orleans Saints, Georgia Bulldogs football team, New England Patriots ...

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  42. 42
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    added by JBK1

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  43. 43
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  44. 44
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    Tyler Eifert is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Tight Ends of All Time

    ranked low on reranks & added by himow
    Tyler Eifert

  45. 45
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    added by slaft

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    added by slaft
    Oakland Raiders

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  47. 47
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    - 59
    Doug Cosbie is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Tight Ends of All Time

    often listed & added by slaft

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  48. 48
    + 26
    - 31

    added by Esavi
    Green Bay Packers, Boston College Eagles football

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    - 38

    added by slaft
    St. Louis Rams, Philadelphia Eagles

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  50. 50
    + 29
    - 32

    added by Kadeebee
    USC Trojans football, Cleveland Browns

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78 +

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