NFL The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time  

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Originally by Ranker Community
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List Rules Please rank the players based on their career accomplishments

When it comes to striking fear into an opposing offense, having a great defensive end can be a game changer. A lightning quick defensive end can cause chaos for offense by interrupting a quarterback's rhythm by rushing and hitting him. A great defensive end is double teamed most of the time, allowing for his counterpart to blow up an offense's scheme. A great defensive end isn't measured by stats, though having a lot of sacks certainly doesn't hurt his claim to being one of the greatest of all time.

There are a lot of familiar faces on the list of greatest defensive ends of all time. Famous defensive ends like Reggie White, Michael Strahan and Jack Youngblood are some of the toughest and menacing players in the league. White and Strahan were considered the best defensive ends of their generation. Strahan currently holds the single season record for sacks in a season. Youngblood cemented his status as the toughest player in the NFL when he played in Super Bowl XIV with a broken leg.

Selecting who the greatest defensive end of all time isn't easy, especially since most of these defensive ends either are in or will be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. But you can vote for who you feel is the best-ever on this Ultimate List.
list ordered by

1
2,431 644
Reggie White is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Green Bay Packers, Carolina Panthers, Philadelphia Eagles

2
1,483 759
Deacon Jones is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils football, Los Angeles Rams, Washington Redskins

3
1,657 620
Bruce Smith is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
wiabux added Buffalo Bills, Washington Redskins, Virginia Tech Hokies football

4
2,628 731
J. J. Watt is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Houston Texans, Wisconsin Badgers football, Central Michigan Chippewas football

5
1,477 701
Michael Strahan is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Texas Southern Tigers football, New York Giants

6
1,099 224
Joe Greene is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Pittsburgh Steelers, North Texas Mean Green football

7
1,038 514
Howie Long is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
wiabux added Oakland Raiders, Villanova Wildcats football

8
1,096 453
Julius Peppers is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
wiabux added North Carolina Tar Heels football, Chicago Bears, Carolina Panthers

9
767 513
Jack Youngblood is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Los Angeles Rams

10
628 308
Charles Haley is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Junior53 added San Francisco 49ers, Dallas Cowboys

11
780 483
Jared Allen is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
wiabux added Idaho State Bengals football, Kansas City Chiefs, Minnesota Vikings

12
587 351
Richard Dent is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Indianapolis Colts, Chicago Bears, Tennessee State Tigers football

13
648 273
DeMarcus Ware is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Troy Trojans football, Dallas Cowboys

14
577 292
Ed Jones is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Arthur Williams added Tennessee State Tigers football, Dallas Cowboys

15
521 273
Dwight Freeney is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
wiabux added Indianapolis Colts, Syracuse Orange football, San Diego Chargers

16
432 415
Lee Roy Selmon is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Oklahoma Sooners football

17
514 236
Jason Taylor is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
wiabux added Washington Redskins, Akron Zips football, New York Jets

18
392 278
L. C. Greenwood is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Arthur Williams added Pittsburgh Steelers

19
379 266
Carl Eller is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Arthur Williams added Seattle Seahawks, Minnesota Vikings

20
360 249
Jim Marshall is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Arthur Williams added Cleveland Browns, Minnesota Vikings

21
303 286
Gino Marchetti is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Dallas Texans, Baltimore Colts

22
286 260
Chris Doleman is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Minnesota Vikings, Atlanta Falcons, and San Francisco 49ers

23
309 181
Bubba Smith is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Baltimore Colts, Houston Oilers, Michigan State Spartans football

24
262 218
Doug Atkins is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Cleveland Browns, Chicago Bears, and New Orleans Saints

25
295 166
Lyle Alzado is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
RobSpencer added Denver Broncos, Oakland Raiders, Cleveland Browns

26
219 107
Merlin Olsen is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Los Angeles Rams, Utah State Aggies football

27
210 221
Harvey Martin is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Arthur Williams added Dallas Cowboys

28
176 166
Jevon Kearse is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
slaft added Florida Gators football, Tennessee Titans, Philadelphia Eagles

29
214 194
Willie McGinest is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
TehSauce added USC Trojans football, New England Patriots, Cleveland Browns

30
191 201
John Matuszak is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Arthur Williams added Houston Oilers, Washington Redskins, Oakland Raiders

31
180 152
Mark Gastineau is listed (or ranked) 31 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
AdamBourque added Arizona State Sun Devils football, New York Jets

32
216 170
Willie Davis is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
willyboymcoy added Cleveland Browns, Green Bay Packers

33
151 190
Dwight White is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Arthur Williams added Pittsburgh Steelers

34
122 127
Dexter Manley is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Ottawa Rough Riders, Washington Redskins, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

35
186 195
Mario Williams is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
NC State Wolfpack football, Buffalo Bills, Houston Texans

36
166 145
Calais Campbell is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Arizona Cardinals

37
101 211
Elvin Bethea is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Houston Oilers

38
219 219
Jason Pierre-Paul is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
New York Giants, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

39
106 128
Clyde Simmons is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
slaft added Philadelphia Eagles, Arizona Cardinals, Jacksonville Jaguars

40
225 150
Cameron Wake is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Penn State Nittany Lions football, BC Lions, Miami Dolphins

41
170 176
Michael Bennett is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Seattle Seahawks, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

42
82 99
Charles Mann is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Washington Redskins, San Francisco 49ers

43
129 75
Robert Mathis is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
_1442177542662 added Indianapolis Colts

44
134 167
Robert Quinn is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
North Carolina Tar Heels football, St. Louis Rams

45
103 132
Cameron Jordan is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
New Orleans Saints, California Golden Bears football

46
141 139
Chris Long is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Virginia Cavaliers football, St. Louis Rams

47
110 124
Fletcher Cox is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Philadelphia Eagles

48
90 174
Claude Humphrey is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
wiabux added Atlanta Falcons, Philadelphia Eagles

49
82 132
Brian Orakpo is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
Washington Redskins, Texas Longhorns football

50
74 80
Joe Klecko is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Greatest Defensive Ends of All Time
New York Jets, Indianapolis Colts