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4.5k voters

The Best Michigan Football Players of All Time

Updated March 3, 2021 36.8k votes 4.5k voters 72.9k views87 items

List RulesRank the players based only on their time at Michigan

A list of the best Michigan Wolverines football players of all time. When many people think of college football, the University of Michigan is one of the first schools that they associate with the game. Michigan currently has the most wins in college football history and many of college football's greats have worn the maize and blue. Michigan has won or shared 42 league titles; only Oklahoma and Nebraska have more conference championships in college football. Since the inception of the AP Poll in 1936, Michigan has finished in the top 10 a record 37 times. The Wolverines claim 11 national championships, most recently that of the 1997 squad voted atop the final AP Poll.

With championships comes great players. Some of the best Michigan players ever have led the school to not only titles, but to the Rose Bowl. The New Year's Day game is a Michigan staple and the Wolverines have played in Pasadena 20 times. Some of Michigan's best players cemented their legacy as famous Michigan football players with strong Rose Bowl performances.

Michigan has a rich history of having outstanding players on its rosters. Who wouldn't want to play for the winningest team in college history? That's what attracted Heisman Trophy winners like Desmond Howard and Charles Woodson to the school. Even a former President of the United States played for the Wolverines. Yes, Gerald Ford was a standout footballer before he entered the White House. 

This is a list of the best Michigan Wolverines football players of all time. If you see someone missing from this list, feel free to add him. Vote or rerank this list of the greatest Michigan Wolverines of all time by who you think should be at the top. 
 
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  • 1
    1,976
    289

    Charles Woodson

    Cornerback, Return specialist

    BirthplaceSebring, Ohio, United States of America

    Age44

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, Oakland Raiders, Green Bay Packers

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    #33 of 322 People Who Should Be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame#5 of 85 The Best Heisman Trophy Winners of All Time

  • 2
    1,360
    480

    Desmond Howard

    Return specialist, Punt returner

    BirthplaceCleveland, Ohio, United States of America

    Age51

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, Washington Redskins, Oakland Raiders, Jacksonville Jaguars, Green Bay Packers

  • 3
    682
    209

    Tom Harmon

    Halfback

    BirthplaceRensselaer, USA, Marion Township, Indiana

    AgeDec. at 70 (1919-1990)

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, St. Louis Rams

  • 4
    767
    248

    Anthony Carter

    Wide receiver

    BirthplaceRiviera Beach, Florida

    Age61

  • 5
    1,003
    352

    Ty Law

    Cornerback, Safety

    BirthplaceAliquippa, Pennsylvania, United States of America

    Age47

    TeamsDenver Broncos, New England Patriots, New York Jets, Kansas City Chiefs

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    #77 of 432 The Greatest Defenders in NFL History#9 of 245 The Best New England Patriots Of All Time

  • 6
    875
    312

    Jake Long

    Tackle

    BirthplaceDetroit, Michigan

    Age36

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, St. Louis Rams, Miami Dolphins

  • 7
    540
    166

    BirthplaceFort Lauderdale, Florida, United States of America

    Age43

    TeamsSeattle Seahawks, Michigan Wolverines football, Tennessee Titans, Minnesota Vikings

  • 8
    558
    185

    Dan Dierdorf

    Tackle, Offensive Lineman

    BirthplaceCanton, Ohio, United States of America

    Age72

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, St. Louis Cardinals

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    #137 of 1,323 The Best Football Players Ever#9 of 225 The Best Arizona Cardinals of All Time

  • 9
    629
    210

    LaMarr Woodley

    Outside Linebacker

    BirthplaceSaginaw, Michigan

    Age36

    TeamsPittsburgh Steelers, Michigan Wolverines football

  • 10
    1,070
    378

    BirthplaceNew Jersey

  • 11
    719
    261

    Braylon Edwards

    Wide receiver

    BirthplaceDetroit, Michigan, United States of America

    Age38

    TeamsSeattle Seahawks, Michigan Wolverines football, Cleveland Browns, San Francisco 49ers, New York Jets

  • 12
    1,950
    784

    Tom Brady

    Quarterback

    BirthplaceSan Mateo, California

    Age44

    TeamsTampa Bay Buccaneers

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    The Funniest Tom Brady Memes For Football Fans#214 of 336 The Hottest Men Of 2021, Ranked

  • 13
    647
    231

    Tyrone Wheatley

    Running back

    BirthplaceInkster, Michigan

    Age49

    TeamsOakland Raiders

  • 14
    865
    333

    Jim Harbaugh

    Quarterback

    BirthplaceToledo, Ohio

    Age57

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, Indianapolis Colts, Chicago Bears, Baltimore Ravens, San Diego Chargers

  • 15
    327
    79

    Devin Bush Jr.

    Linebacker

    BirthplacePembroke Pines, Florida

    TeamsPittsburgh Steelers

  • 16
    486
    159

    BirthplaceKinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo

    Age47

    TeamsCarolina Panthers

  • 17
    447
    158

    Brandon Graham

    Defensive end

    BirthplaceDetroit, Oregon

    Age33

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, Philadelphia Eagles

  • 18
    549
    195

    Mike Hart

    Running back

    BirthplaceSyracuse, New York

    Age35

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, Indianapolis Colts

  • 19
    712
    320

    Denard Robinson

    Running back, Quarterback

    Age30

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, Jacksonville Jaguars

  • 20
    416
    148

    Amani Toomer

    Wide receiver

    BirthplaceBerkeley, California

    Age47

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, New York Giants

  • 21
    407
    126

    Anthony Thomas

    Running back

    BirthplaceWinnfield, Louisiana

    Age43

    TeamsNew Orleans Saints, Buffalo Bills, Michigan Wolverines football, Chicago Bears, Dallas Cowboys

  • 22
    383
    152

    Mario Manningham

    Wide receiver

    BirthplaceWarren, Ohio

    Age35

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, San Francisco 49ers, New York Giants

  • 23
    428
    197

    Brian Griese

    Quarterback

    BirthplaceMiami, Florida

    Age46

    TeamsMichigan Wolverines football, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Denver Broncos, Chicago Bears, Miami Dolphins

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    #22 of 69 The Best Chicago Bears Quarterbacks of All Time#73 of 77 The Best Tampa Bay Buccaneers of All Time

  • 24
    315
    131

    Leon Hall

    Cornerback

    BirthplaceVista, California

    Age36

    TeamsCincinnati Bengals

  • 25
    376
    158

    Jourdan Lewis

    Cornerback