NFL The Best Football Players Ever  

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Originally by Ranker Community
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List Rules Only pro football players. Please vote for the players based on his career accomplishments

One of the hot topics of debate not only among NFL fans but pundits as well is who is the best football player of all time. Fans will also enjoy the best NFL coaches of all time and the best NFL quarterbacks currently in the league. It's a very difficult question to answer and one that can't be answered very easily. Do you rank a quarterback above an offensive lineman and likewise for a defensive end versus a wide receiver. Many of the players on this list have been inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in Canton, so this is a list of the best of the best players

All time greats like Jim Brown, Jerry Rice, Joe Montana and Lawrence Taylor are deservedly on this list. These players dominated the league when they played, often causing chaos on the field and often terrorized opponents and breaking the hearts of those fans. Football fans can agree that regardless of position, the players on this list should be considered among the best football players ever. These players' stats and overall influence on the way the game was played factor into why they're considered the best.
Vote for the football player you consider to be the greatest of all time. It's not an easy choice and you pretty much can't go wrong with any of these superstar players. There's a reason why they're considered the best football players ever and this your chance to choose who is the best of the best.

list ordered by

1
15,111 7,164
Jerry Rice is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Jerry Rice Wide receiver

2
12,298 7,015
Joe Montana is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Joe Montana Quarterback

3
12,199 6,014
Walter Payton is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Walter Payton Running back

4
12,078 5,207
Barry Sanders is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Barry Sanders Running back

5
8,967 5,218
Jim Brown is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Jim Brown Running back, Fullback

6
13,926 8,205
Tom Brady is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Tom Brady Quarterback

7
7,291 4,021
Reggie White is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Reggie White Defensive tackle, Defensive end

8
10,073 6,853
Peyton Manning is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Peyton Manning Quarterback

9
9,696 4,649
Lawrence Taylor is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Lawrence Taylor Linebacker

10
6,238 3,542
John Elway is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
John Elway Quarterback

11
6,378 3,807
Dan Marino is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Dan Marino Quarterback

12
5,308 2,277
Joe Greene is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Football Players Ever

13
5,092 2,690
Dick Butkus is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Dick Butkus Linebacker, Center

14
4,768 2,310
Ronnie Lott is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Ronnie Lott Cornerback, Safety, Defensive back

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15
4,377 2,703
Johnny Unitas is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Johnny Unitas Quarterback

16
6,402 2,711
Randy Moss is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Randy Moss Wide receiver

17
8,229 3,629
Deion Sanders is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Deion Sanders Cornerback, Punt returner, Kickoff returner

18
3,701 2,103
Eric Dickerson is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Eric Dickerson Running back

19
6,613 3,529
Brett Favre is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Brett Favre Quarterback

20
6,555 3,112
Emmitt Smith is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Emmitt Smith Running back

21
6,606 3,446
Ray Lewis is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Ray Lewis Linebacker

The Best Wide Receivers of All Time

22
4,769 2,572
Steve Young is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Steve Young Quarterback

23
6,459 2,046
Bo Jackson is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Bo Jackson Running back

24
3,250 1,728
LaDainian Tomlinson is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
LaDainian Tomlinson Running back

25
3,753 2,000
Marshall Faulk is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Marshall Faulk Running back

26
2,849 1,880
Deacon Jones is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Football Players Ever

27
2,527 1,786
Otto Graham is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Otto Graham Quarterback

28
2,986 1,846
Bart Starr is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Bart Starr Quarterback

The Greatest Defensive Tackles of All Time

29
4,959 2,652
J. J. Watt is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
J. J. Watt Defensive end

30
2,133 1,364
Dick Lane is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Dick Lane Cornerback

31
3,903 1,885
Calvin Johnson is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Calvin Johnson Wide receiver

32
2,929 1,659
Earl Campbell is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Earl Campbell Running back

33
2,999 1,833
Jack Lambert is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Jack Lambert Linebacker

34
4,071 2,096
Aaron Rodgers is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Aaron Rodgers Quarterback

35
1,483 1,054
Terrell Owens is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Terrell Owens Wide receiver

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36
3,056 1,354
Larry Fitzgerald is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Larry Fitzgerald Wide receiver

37
2,313 1,568
Bruce Smith is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Football Players Ever

38
2,130 1,581
Mike Singletary is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best Football Players Ever

39
1,657 1,287
Sammy Baugh is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Sammy Baugh Punter, Quarterback, Defensive back

40
4,149 2,463
Adrian Peterson is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Adrian Peterson Running back

41
2,741 1,150
Charles Woodson is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Charles Woodson Cornerback, Return specialist, Safety

42
3,298 1,615
Drew Brees is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Drew Brees Quarterback

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43
2,770 1,669
Roger Staubach is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Roger Staubach Quarterback

44
3,316 2,091
Tony Gonzalez is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Tony Gonzalez Tight end

45
3,351 2,074
Terry Bradshaw is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Terry Bradshaw Quarterback

46
2,439 1,430
Ed Reed is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Ed Reed Free Safety

47
1,576 793
Jim Thorpe is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Jim Thorpe Running back, Punter, Placekicker

48
2,539 1,284
Michael Irvin is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Michael Irvin Wide receiver

49
2,469 1,435
Rod Woodson is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Football Players Ever

50
770 527
Brian Dawkins is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Football Players Ever
Brian Dawkins Safety