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Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!

Important NFL Players: Trying to determine who the greatest NFL players ever were is always interesting. While opinions on the big guys may differ, it’s usually clear who belongs in the top tier. It’s a little more difficult to determine which is the most crucial.

The people who worked behind the scenes to make the NFL what it is today—coaches, executives, and other key figures—were largely responsible for its creation, not the players.

However, a few players had a significant influence on the NFL. It had nothing to do with their playing style or level of celebrity. They changed one or two positions, added new rules, and, in one instance, even came up with a phrase that is now commonplace in football lingo.

Though it’s difficult to say for sure, these ten players are arguably the most significant in NFL history in many aspects. Without them, pro football as it exists today would be very different.

Important NFL Players ranked:

10. Don Hutson:

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!
Photo Source: Today Sports

The wide receiver position as we know it might not exist without Don Hutson. Hutson, the first Green Bay Packers legend, was selected by the team in the 1935 NFL Draft and was a member of the team for his whole 11-year career. He invented many of the pass routes that are still in use today and was the first player to reach 1,000 yards receiving.

Three-time NFL champion Hutson changed the standard for what a wide receiver could accomplish, setting records that lasted for decades. As one of the first members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Hutson set the standard for all other wide receivers to follow.

9. Deacon Jones:

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!
Photo Source: Today Sports

The fact that Deacon Jones never registered his invention—a term for tackling the quarterback—as a trademark was his biggest regret. Had he, he would have been among the wealthiest football players. Jones was a standout player for the Rams and other teams, mauling opponents and arguably being the best defensive end of his era.

His reputation grew from his ability to tackle the quarterback, which he explained by simply saying he “sacked” the player when questioned about how he accomplished it. Indeed, Jones is credited with coining the term “sack,” which is now a statistic. Even though Jones leaves a great playing legacy, his greatest contribution to football is one of its most common terms.

8. John Mackey:

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!
Photo Source: Today Sports

John Mackey is an essential member of the NFL for reasons beyond just his playing career. As a member of the Colts’ Super Bowl-winning team and a five-time Pro Bowler, Mackey was an incredible player and an obvious choice for the Hall of Fame. However, he left a more lasting legacy as the NFL Players Association’s first president.

Mackey spearheaded the Association’s lawsuit that allowed for free agency as well as a strike for improved player benefits. NFL players wouldn’t have the influence they do without Mackey, which is why he is respected for bringing about so much change.

7. Junior Seau:

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!
Photo Source: Today Sports

Although this is more appropriately classified as a tragedy, Junior Seau’s influence on the NFL is still very much present. One of the greatest linebackers of all time, Seau led the Chargers to a Super Bowl and was a twelve-time Pro Bowler with impressive stats. His 2012 suicide was shocking, but even more so were the brain scans that revealed the long-term effects of the concussions he had sustained.

With his death, Seau exposed the reality of CTE in athletes, a topic that is still being discussed and attempts to be lessened. Perhaps Seau’s greatest gift to the NFL was his passing, which helped to shed light on a complicated subject.

6. Pete Gogolak:

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!
Photo Source: Today Sports

Field goals were anything but a gimmie for decades when NFL kickers employed a variety of styles. Then along came Pete Gogolak. With amazing accuracy, his soccer-style kicking helped the Bills win two AFL championships. Gogolak was the one who demonstrated that this potent kicking technique offered greater power for long kicks in addition to being more successful at hitting the target.

He started the “war of the leagues” in 1966 by choosing to sign with the Giants, which led to the NFL and AFL merging. Unexpectedly not a household name, Gogolak had a major influence on the AFL merger as well as how kickers appear in the NFL today.

5. Mel Blount:

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!
Photo Source: Today Sports

You know you’re a major player in the NFL when you have a rule named after you. Mel Blount was a vital member of the 1970s Steelers dynasty, playing a major role in pass interference rules that were far less stringent back then.

Blount, a four-time Super Bowl champion, was so good at smashing opponents that he helped create the rule limiting defensive backs to five yards from the line of scrimmage. Even though some people might take issue with that now, it demonstrates the impact Blount had and the NFL’s need to create a new regulation in order to stop others from following in his sinister footsteps.

4. Joe Namath:

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!
Photo Source: Today Sports

To put it plainly, Joe Namath was not a very good quarterback. Nevertheless, because of his audacious prophecy that fundamentally altered history, he is a pivotal figure. The AFL was viewed as the NFL’s weak pretender before Super Bowl III, and nobody really took it seriously.

So everyone laughed when Namath said his New York Jets would beat the seemingly invincible Baltimore Colts. Rather, Namath orchestrated an incredible upset win for the Jets. Along with making him a legend, it also demonstrated the AFL’s seriousness, which paved the way for the league’s eventual merger with the NFL. So, if nothing else, Broadway Joe’s prophecy marked a significant turning point in NFL history.

3. Jim Brown:

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!
Photo Source: Today Sports

Jim Brown’s legacy extends beyond his extraordinary skill on the field, where he set records that might still be in place today had he not left the game at the pinnacle of his abilities. However, Brown’s arrival as the first real African-American NFL superstar in the late 1950s was also a significant change.

As a champion with the Browns and a new benchmark for running backs to come, Brown cleared the path for countless others to follow. Being a pioneer as well as a player, Brown left a lasting legacy in the NFL that extended far beyond his winnings.

2. Johnny Unitas:

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!
Photo Source: Today Sports

Although there were excellent quarterbacks before Johnny Unitas, he permanently altered the potential of the position. Not only did his outstanding play earn him three NFL championships, three MVP awards, and other honours…

Additionally, Unitas changed the quarterback’s role in play-calling, his command of the field, and the idea that a game could be decided by a few well-placed passes. While transforming quarterbacks from journeymen to an essential member of the team, he also inspired respect. Since then, every quarterback has to give Unitas credit for genuinely altering the game.

1. Jim Thorpe:

Top 10 legendary important NFL Players in history!
Photo Source: Today Sports

Jim Thorpe was not only the first NFL superstar but also one of the greatest pure athletes in American history. Thorpe, who had already won gold in the Olympics and played baseball, started playing football in 1915 for the Canton Bulldogs, who went on to found the NFL.

During that time, Thorpe was traded between six teams, each of which made use of his incredible running and fighting prowess. Even though that title was primarily for show, he was also the first President of the league. However, Thorpe’s status as a world-class athlete elevated his developing league to a respectable level and contributed to his extraordinary legacy as he helped shape the NFL into what it is today.

So, this was all about the top important NFL Players. Also read, Top 10 most laziest NFL Players in the history

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