Best Of 2011 The Best Athletes of 2011  

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Originally by Ranker Community
4.7k votes 514 voters 27.9k views 100 items

List Rules Only vote for athletes based on their 2011 season

Whether they led your favorite team to a championship or helped a rival team eliminate yours from the playoffs, the best athletes of 2011 provided us with hours of cheers (and a few tears) throughout the year in sports.

These fine athletes accomplished feats never before completed, like when Tom Brady passed for a ridiculous 517 yards in a single game, but also showed that they were human, like when Peyton Manning was ruled out at the beginning of the 2011 NFL season.

Other athletes were in the news for the wrong reasons, like tennis star Serena Williams who was criticized for her on-court profanity or Cam Newton, the number-one NFL Draft pick who dealt with a pay-for-play scandal that shortened his college football career.

Even entire teams were in the news, many for overcoming big obstacles to win a championship, like the Boston Bruins in the NHL, or for huge collapses right before a playoff run, like the Boston Red Sox in the MLB. Others were laughed at when high expectations ended in disappointment, such as the dramatic year for LeBron James and the Miami Heat, who lost in the NBA Finals.

In the end, only one sports team from each league or sport could be named the best, the champions of the year and from each league comes an MVP, one person that stood above the rest in accomplishing great things. Those most valued players, and a few who may not be sporting a new championship ring, but still played quite well, make up the best athletes of 2011.

Check out more lists like Best Athletes of 2012, Ugliest Athletes of All Time, Sexiest Male Athletes
list ordered by

1
109 81
Dirk Nowitzki is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 40

2
99 77
Usain Bolt is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 32

3
93 66
Novak Djokovic is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011

4
85 99
Aaron Rodgers is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 35

5
89 56
Lionel Messi is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 31

6
66 79
Derrick Rose is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 30

7
71 73
Manny Pacquiáo is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011

8
37 13
Michael Schuhmacher is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011

9
67 84
Tom Brady is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 41

10
26 14
Lindsey Vonn is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 34

11
48 34
Sebastian Vettel is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011

12
33 15
Mario Götze is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 26

13
31 11
Nicklas Lidström is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011

14
18 4
Sally McLellan is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 32

15
31 18
Wesley Sneijder is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011

16
48 52
Rafael Nadal is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 32

17
16 1
Therese Johaug is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 30

18
16 3
Tatyana Chernova is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 30

19
17 2
Lewis Hamilton is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 33

20
45 60
Kobe Bryant is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 40

21
14 2
Marit Bjørgen is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 38

22
14 2
Thomas Morgenstern is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 32

23
15 1
Maria Höfl-Riesch is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 34

24
18 3
Chipper Jones is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
snowman69 added age 46

25
15 1
David Storl is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 28

26
36 22
Wes Welker is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 37

27
12 1
Andreas Thorkildsen is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 36

28
12 1
Brian McCann is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
snowman69 added age 34

29
25 11
Apolo Ohno is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 36

30
19 5
Casey Stoner is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 33

31
14 1
Sofiya Velikaya is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 33

32
23 10
Dont'a Hightower is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011

33
15 10
Anderson Silva is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011

34
14 1
Jodie Williams is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 25

35
14 1
Betty Heidler is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 35

36
36 21
Hope Solo is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 37

37
15 2
Linn Jørum Sulland is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 34

38
40 56
Blake Griffin is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 29

39
14 2
Kim Clijsters is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 35

40
27 16
Jimmy Graham is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 32

41
31 20
Shaun White is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 32

42
13 2
Samantha Stosur is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 34

43
13 2
Stacy Lewis is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 33

44
11 1
Mohamed Farah is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 35

45
21 10
Dustin Pedroia is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011

46
42 69
Peyton Manning is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011

47
13 2
Ashton Eaton is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 30

48
12 7
Dwyane Wade is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 36

49
20 20
Arjen Robben is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
age 34

50
12 3
Valentina Vezzali is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Athletes of 2011
Boqueman added age 44