The Greatest Tight Ends of All Time Football Players (American)
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The Greatest Tight Ends of All Time

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!

  • 21 ReRanks
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    • Region
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L The List
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2rerank list
  1. 1
    + 836
    - 480

    the people's #1
    Tight end

    ) open
  2. 2
    + 840
    - 456
    ) open
  3. 3
    + 668
    - 443

    most listed
    Tight end

    ) open
  4. 4
    + 855
    - 433

    Tight end

    ) open
  5. 5
    + 537
    - 308

    Tight end

    ) open
  6. 6
    + 575
    - 348
    ) open
  7. 7
    + 550
    - 354
    ) open
  8. 8
    + 348
    - 276

    Tight end

    ) open
  9. 9
    + 299
    - 254

    Tight end

    ) open
  10. 10
    + 313
    - 238

    Tight end, Wide receiver

    ) open
  11. 11
    + 394
    - 207

    ranked low on reranks & added by AhmadPoloswaggoutConteh
    Tight end

    ) open
  12. 12
    + 170
    - 175

    Tight end

    ) open
  13. 13
    + 194
    - 228

    Fullback, Tight end

    ) open
  14. 14
    + 247
    - 223

    Tight end

    ) open
  15. 15
    + 183
    - 180

    Tight end

    ) open
  16. 16
    + 211
    - 220

    Tight end

    ) open
  17. 17
    + 106
    - 167

    Tight end

    ) open
  18. 18
    + 106
    - 179

    Tight end

    ) open
  19. 19
    + 90
    - 149
    ) open
  20. 20
    + 105
    - 141

    Tight end

    ) open
  21. 21
    + 152
    - 177
    ) open
  22. 22
    + 105
    - 148

    Tight end

    ) open
  23. 23
    + 76
    - 130

    Tight end

    ) open
  24. 24
    + 121
    - 51

    ranked low on reranks
    Tight end

    ) open
  25. 25
    + 68
    - 117

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Tight end

    ) open
  26. 26
    + 95
    - 48

    ranked low on reranks
    Tight end

    ) open
  27. 27
    + 62
    - 132

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Tight end

    ) open
  28. 28
    + 92
    - 48

    Tight end

    ) open
  29. 29
    + 57
    - 36

    ranked low on reranks & added by FrankMades
    Tight end

    ) open
  30. 30
    + 41
    - 130

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Tackle, Tight end

    ) open
  31. 31
    + 32
    - 119

    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Tight end, Wide receiver

    ) open
  32. 32
    + 62
    - 94
    ) open
  33. 33
    + 37
    - 36

    Tight end

    ) open
  34. 34
    + 47
    - 48

    added by RobSpencer
    Tight end

    ) open
  35. 35
    + 9
    - 14

    added by slaft
    Tight end

    ) open
  36. 36
    + 15
    - 18

    added by chile6880
    Tight end

    ) open
  37. 37
    + 1
    - 7
    No image

    added by slaft
    Tight end

    ) open
  38. 38
    + 43
    - 95

    added by JBK1
    Tight end

    ) open
  39. 39
    + 5
    - 7

    added by slaft
    Fullback, Tight end

    ) open
  40. 40
    + 2
    - 7

    added by slaft
    Running back, Tight end

    ) open
  41. 41
    + 29
    - 102

    added by beachbumdan
    Tight end

    ) open
  42. 42
    + 1
    - 7

    added by slaft
    Tight end

    ) open
  43. 43
    + 2
    - 2

    added by slaft
    Tight end

    ) open
  44. 44
    + 2
    - 7

    added by slaft
    Tight end

    ) open
  45. 45
    + 15
    - 57

    added by RobSpencer
    Tight end

    ) open
  46. 46
    + 32
    - 66

    added by JosephRobba
    Tight end

    ) open
  47. 47
    + 16
    - 53

    added by RobSpencer
    Tight end

    ) open
  48. 48
    + 21
    - 101
    No image

    often listed & added by JBK1
    Tight end

    ) open
  49. 49
    + 1
    - 0
    No image

    new! & added by rcdwhiteley
    Tight end

    ) open
  50. 50
    + 10
    - 16

    added by idavid
    Tight end

    ) open
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