Who doesn’t like a Top 10 Greatest NFL Players list? It gets the feathers ruffled, the beer into the blood stream faster and sparks numerous debates!
And that’s only half the fun!
Today I thought I would take a look at the Top 10 Greatest NFL Players From This Decade!
Now, to do this properly, we have to inject a few “rules” if you will to better help everyone understand the subject matter.
The reason for this is simple: I have done a TON of these pieces in the past and without a few caveats, folks tend to misunderstand the idea.
So here’s the idea, kids.
- All players have been in the league for AT LEAST 10 years, UNLESS they are so prolific at their current position they have already been established as one of the greats—there's just a few under 10 years, so see if you can spot them without help from the internet :)
- Since it is futile to talk about this particular decade—being just 3 years old—I am going 10 years back from 2013.
- No retired players will be mentioned here. Retired players are individuals you would speak of in a “All-Time” sort of piece, which this is not.
OK, I think that’s about it. Let's see who’s who in my Top 10 list!
Adrian Peterson, RB, Minnesota Vikings:
What more can I say about All-Day? He’s more than the total package and is certainly one of the best running backs to ever grace the field of professional football.
If that isn’t enough, the man expects himself to reach 2,500 yards this season, which to be honest, isn’t that far-fetched of an idea.
Can you believe this guy set an NCAA record as a true freshman (Oklahoma), rushing for 1,925 yards? He hasn't slowed down since and that was way back in 2004!
Peyton Manning, QB, Denver Broncos (current):
Peyton Manning, after everything the man has been through, is still one of the best quarterbacks of this decade hands down!
Even after a threatening “career ending injury” the man was a stone’s throw away from the Super Bowl, making him one of the best Top 10 QBs playing the game today, if not the best!
Andrew Luck has big shoes to fill if he wants to be the next great Indy QB.
Tom Brady, QB, New England Patriots:
It all started with a darling of a season, but what makes Tom Brady a cut above the rest is the fact that he hasn’t slowed down a bit.
You can expect Brady to win one more Super Bowl in his lifetime—possibly this season—before he talks retirement.
Until then, enjoy the ride.
Ed Reed, DB, Houston Texans (current):
Ed Reed! 9 time Pro Bowler and five time 1st team All-Pro, and quite possibly one of the hardest hitting DBs in the game today!
There isn’t a DB in the game who can say they play as good as Ed Reed, even if there are a few who are very close.
OK there MAY be one or two on this list, but that's it I swear!
If you're a Texans fan, I have to imagine you're happier than Bob Vila at a Craftsman convention
Tony Gonzalez, TE, Atlanta Falcons:
Plays like a receiver, always carries himself like a coach and is the model for every up and coming TE in the game today.
Tony Gonzalez has been such a clutch player since day one, playing a position that wasn’t always viewed as paramount to the offense.
One can argue he helped re-define those “terms”.
Troy Polamalu, DB, Pittsburgh Steelers:
How do you shut down someone who seemingly never even sleeps?
Troy Polamalu is one of the greatest DBs to ever play the game, whether you’re talking about coverage, hitting or flat out defense.
I’ll leave it up to Steelers fans and Ravens fans to duke it out over who's better than who (Troy or Reed) ;)
Champ Bailey, DB, Denver Broncos:
12 time Pro Bowler (most of any cornerback) and 3 time 1st team All-Pro, Champ Bailey has been a common household name in NFL homes since the stellar class of 1999.
This is a guy who has already become borderline immortal in some fan circles.
Bailey is also the All-Time Denver Bronco leader in interceptions and is regarded as one of the best pass defenders in the history of the game.
Wes Welker, WR, Denver Broncos:
He’s been a “money receiver” since the day he began catching balls.
Wes Welker will no doubt one day don the illustrious red jacket for everything he has accomplished as a Patriot, and WILL accomplish in Denver.
He is the proud owner of numerous Patriots and league records that will undoubtedly stand for quite some time, and he is already known as the greatest slot receiver playing the game today.
Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans Saints:
I remember watching Drew Brees when he played at Purdue and thought THEN he was going to be something special.
7 Pro Bowls, 2-time NFL Offensive Player of the year, Comeback Player of the Year (2004), Super Bowl XLIV MVP and tied for most completions in a Super Bowl (32, Tom Brady) LATER, and I can firmly say I was right.
And he's nowhere near being done!
Adam Vinatieri, K, Indianapolis Colts:
I can’t make a list without choosing someone who kicks the rock, so why Adam Vinatieri?
He is the ONLY kicker to ever win four Super Bowls and he is the only kicker who has truly earned the moniker “Mr. Clutch”.
We’ll have to wait a long, long time before we see another kicker quite as well as Adam Vinatieri!
It's YOUR Turn!
OK, kids! This is just my list and there's plenty of debatable players for everyone to discuss.
I could enter a "Honorable Mention" section here, but I think it would be better for all of you to give me your Top 10 ideas.
Who do ya have in YOUR TOP 10? Remember, consider the criteria I used when making your mention, and let’s keep the debate clean and fun.