Joe Montana, Jerry Rice, Jim Brown, Dick Butkus, Reggie White, it doesn't get any better than this. These are the best that have ever played, and any team would be lucky to have them.
From Red Grange to Randy Moss, or Bronko Nagurski to Brian Dawkins, here is the complete position by position breakdown of the greatest to ever play the game.
Joe Montana, Slingin' Sammy Baugh, Otto Graham, Johnny Unitas, Dan Marino.
If you want a guy who knows how to win, Montana is your guy. If you ask who is the greatest ever, the most frequent answer will probably be Montana.
Red Grange, Walter Payton, Jim Brown, Bronko Nagurski, Barry Sanders
Starter: Jim Brown at tailback, and Bronko Nagurski at Fullback.
Bronko was a 230 pound back when offensive tackles were 260 at the biggest. He would run through any defense that got in his way.
I don't think much needs to be said about Jim Brown; 5.2 yards per carry, 12,312 yards, and 106 rushing touchdowns should speak volumes.
Jerry Rice, Don Hutson, Randy Moss, Lance Alworth, Marvin Harrison
Starters: Jerry Rice, Don Hutson.
The number of records that Hutson holds is astonishing. He holds records for most seasons leading the league in receptions, most seasons leading the league in receiving yards, and most seasons leading the league in receiving touchdowns.
Rice holds the career marks in all of the above categories.
Mike Ditka, Kellen Winslow, Shannon Sharpe, Tony Gonzalez, Ozzie Newsome, Antonio Gates
Starter: Tony Gonzalez.
Gonzalez has been productive his entire career, and the numbers speak for themselves; 999 career receptions, 11,807 career receiving yards, and 82 TD's. From the TE position that's pretty good.
Anthony Muñoz, Forrest Gregg, Jackie Slater, Ron Yary, Art Shell
Starters: Muñoz and Gregg.
Dominant. When you think of these guys, that's all there is too it.
John Hannah, Mike Munchak, Gene Upshaw, Randall McDaniel, Larry Allen
Starters: Hannah, and Upshaw.
Before Upshaw was president of the NFLPA he was a pretty frightening Guard. John Hannah was more than an immovable object, but an unstoppable force. He dominated his era.
Chuck Bednarik, Jim Otto, Jim Ringo, Mel Hein, Mike Webster
Starter: Mel Hein.
There was never a center as dominant as Hein, and there might never be. He rarely if ever got beat, and just about always was able to open a hole.
Merlin Olsen, Bob Lilly, Joe Greene, Randy White, Alan Page
Starters: Greene and White.
One was mean enough to earn the nickname Mean Joe Greene, and the other was some combination of Man and Monster, so they called him Manster. That has got to tell you something.
Deacon Jones, Reggie White, Bruce Smith, Geno Marchetti, Lee Roy Selmon
Starters: Deacon Jones, Reggie White
Sacks weren't a stat when Deacon Jones played but he claims to have had one season of 24, and one season of 26, and there is no reason to doubt him. He was so good they had to make his signature move, the head slap, illegal.
The Minister of Defense was just a monster. He would run over the best offensive linemen in the game, and if you were a quarterback, your only goal was to survive. Not to mention that both could absolutely shut down the running game.
Lawrence Taylor, Derrick Thomas, Jack Ham, Ted Hendricks, Dave Wilcox
Starters: LT, Jack Ham
Jack Ham was simply one of the greatest linebackers to ever play the game, and was a solid all-around player. LT is called by many to be the greatest defensive player ever. He changed the way offenses play football.
Dick Butkus, Ray Nitschke, Ray Lewis, Jack Lambert, Harry Carson
Starters: Butkus, Nitschke
Butkus was probably the most feared tackler ever. He always made a play and rarely, if ever missed a tackle. Nitschke was as tough as they come, and was the centerpiece for the packers defenses of the 60's and early 70's. Fearsome hitting and 25 interceptions make Nitschke a starter.
Night Train Lane, Herb Adderly, Rod Woodson, Champ Bailey, Roger Wherli
Starters: Night Trane Lane, Herb Adderly
Adderly was a shutdown corner for Lombardi's defenses. He was drafted as a running back, but Lombardi switched him halfway through the season to corner due to injury.
Night Train Lane had 68 career interceptions, and was one of the most feared tacklers in the game. Night Train could change any game he was in, and throwing to his side was one of the riskiest things a quarterback could do. It was bad for ball security and for the receiver's health.
Ronnie Lott, Ken Houston, Paul Krause, Brian Dawkins, Willie Wood
Starters: Lott, Dawkins
Ronnie Lott was a hitting machine who would intercept any ball that came near him. Lott had part of his finger cut off so he wouldn't miss time. Best safety to ever play the game, Lott had no clear weaknesses.
Dawkins is a game changer. The Eagles defense was nowhere what is was with Dawkins, and he was nowhere near his prime. In his prime, he was the most feared safety in the game.
Ray Guy, Jan Stenerud, Sammy Baugh, Shane Lechler, Adam Vinatieri
Starters: Ray Guy, Jan Stenerud
Ray Guy was probably the only punter that actually could be fun to watch, he was that good at punting the football. Stenerud was a 7 time all pro, and the only kicker in the Hall of Fame. Hard to argue with that.
And yes Sammy Baugh was punter and a quarterback. A record setting punter at that.
Vince Lombardi, Bill Walsh, Chuck Noll, Don Shula, Tom Landry
Head Coach: Vince Lombardi
Come on, the Super Bowl trophy is named after the guy. In 10 years as the Packers Head Coach, he won five NFL Titles and two Super Bowls. He coached the Redskins for one year and led them to a miraculous turnaround. Other coaches were great, but there is only one Lombardi.