The NFL has been around for a long time and within that time, what must be thousands of players, have graced the fields. But not everyone has what it takes to become a legend. In fact, only a few make it into the Hall of Fame and are praised by fans long after they stop playing or living. But do you know who these greats are? Would you be able to tell us their names if we showed you pictures of them?
Of course, you'll know Drew Brees, Tom Brady, and Peyton Manning, but could you tell us the name of retired legends like Joe Montana, John Elway and Dan Marino and dead ones like Johnny Unitas, Roger Staubach, and Otto Graham. Thinking you can do it and doing it are two different things- are you as confident as we think you are about acing this quiz?
If you want to test whether you've got the knowledge to call yourself a true fan of the sport, this is the quiz to do it in. Will you need to go do your research by the end, or could you become one of the people who work with these great men. Take this quiz to find out.
Jerry Rice is a former wide receiver who is considered to be the greatest receiver in NFL history. By the end of his career, the Super Bowl XXIII MVP had caught 1,549 passes for 22,985 yards, earned 197 touchdowns and retired with three Super Bowl rings.
Tom Brady is a quarterback who currently plays for the New England Patriots. His accomplishments include being the only quarterback to lead his team to eight Super Bowl appearances, five of which he won, and the only quarterback to earn the Super Bowl MVP title four times.
Joe Greene is a retired defensive tackle who was nicknamed "Mean" Joe Greene, due to his intimidating, fierce and competitive style of play. Regarded as one of the best defensive linemen, he made ten Super Bowl appearances with the Pittsburgh Steelers, four of which he won.
Peyton Manning is a former quarterback whose career spanned 18 seasons, 14 of which he spent with the Indianapolis Colts and the remaining four with the Denver Broncos. He is the NFL's all-time leader in regular season wins (186), touchdown passes (539), and passing yards (71, 940).
Joe Montana, nicknamed "The Comeback Kid" and "Joe Cool," is a retired quarterback who led the San Francisco 49ers to four Super Bowl victories. He is an eight-time Pro Bowler, three-time All-Pro, two-time NFL MVP and the first three-time MVP in Super Bowl history.
Walter Payton, nicknamed "Sweetness," was a running back who spent 13 seasons with the Chicago Bears. He is a nine-time Pro Bowler, five-time All-Pro and was the NFL's leading rusher from 1984 (broke Jim Brown's record) to 2002, when he was surpassed by Emmitt Smith.
Johnny Unitas, also known as "The Golden Arm" or "Johnny U," was a quarterback who led the Baltimore Colts to three NFL titles. For 52 years, he held the record for the most consecutive games with a touchdown pass, a record that was broken by Drew Brees in on October 7, 2012.
Lawrence Taylor, nicknamed "L.T.," is a former linebacker who racked up 132.5 sacks during his 13n-year career with the New York Giants. He is a 10-time Pro Bowler, eight-time All-Pro, a Pro Football Hall of Famer and two-time Super Bowl winner (1986, 1990).
Barry Sanders is a former running back who played for the Detroit Lions from 1989 to 1998. He is a 10-time Pro-Bowler, four-time NFL rushing champion, and the NFL's second all-time leading rusher, racking up a total of 15, 269 yards and 99 touchdowns.
Reggie White, nicknamed "The Minister of Defense," was a defensive end whose NFL career spanned 15 years. He was the 1988 NFL Defensive Player of the Year, 13-time Pro Bowler, eight-time All-Pro and a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Otto Graham was a quarterback for the Cleveland Browns who is considered to be one of the most dominant players of his time. He is a Pro Football Hall of Famer, seven-time All-Pro and three-time NFL champion. He retired in 1955 with a total of 13,499 passing yards.
Emmitt Smith is a former running back who retired with a total of 18,355 rushing yards, making him the leading rusher in NFL history. He spent 14 of his 15-season career with the Dallas Cowboys, during which he won three Super Bowl championships (XXVII, XXVIII, XXX).
Brett Favre is a retired quarterback who led the Green Bay Packers to victory over the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XXXI. He is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, 11-time Pro Bowler, three-time NFL MVP and holds the NFL record of 298 consecutive starts.
Randy Moss, nicknamed "The Freak," is a former wide receiver whose NFL career spanned for 14 seasons. He ended his career in 2012 with 982 receptions for 15,292 yards and 156 touchdowns, 23 of which he earned in one season (2007).
Ronnie Lott is a retired professional football player who played cornerback, strong safety and free safety for five NFL teams. He is a Pro Football Hall of Famer who helped the San Francisco 49ers win four Super Bowl championships during the 1980s (XVI, XIX, XXIII, XXIV).
Ray Lewis is a former linebacker who spent his entire 17-year career with the Baltimore Ravens. He is a two-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year who helped the Ravens win two Super Bowl championships, during which he earned MVP honors for Super Bowl XXXV.
Dick Butkus is a former linebacker who is renowned as a fierce and intimidating tackler. He spent his entire career with the Chicago Bears, during which he was twice named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year and was invited to eight Pro Bowls.
Eric Dickerson is a retired running back who was selected in the first round of the 1983 NFL Draft. During his 11-year career, he was named the 1983 Offensive Rookie of the Year, the 1986 Offensive Player of the Year and, in 1984, set the NFL single-season record by rushing for 2,105 yards.
Roger Staubach, nicknamed "Rodger the Dodger," "Captain Comeback," and "Captain America," was the first quarterback to lead his team to four Super Bowls, two of which he won (VI, XII). He is a six-time Pro Bowler and a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
John Elway is a retired quarterback who spent his entire career with the Denver Broncos. He currently serves as the team's manager and executive vice president of football operations. He led his team to five Super Bowls, winning in Super Bowl XXXII and XXXIII.
Mel Blount is a retired Pittsburgh Steelers player who is considered to be one of the best cornerbacks in NFL history. He is a 1989 Hall of Fame inductee, the 1975 NFL Defensive Player of the Year, five-time Pro Bowler and four-time Super Bowl champion.
Dan Marino is a former Miami Dolphins quarterback. He is a nine-time Pro Bowler and a five-time NFL passing yards leader (1984, 1985, 1986, 1988, 1992). During his 17-season career, he won several titles, including the 1984 NFL Most Valuable Player.
Jack Lambert is a former Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker who is regarded as one of the most intimidating linebackers of his era. He is a 1990 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee who won four Super Bowl championships and was named the 1976 NFL Defensive Player of the Year.
Steve Young is a retired quarterback whose career spanned for 15 seasons, 13 of which were spent with the San Francisco 49ers. He is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, three-time Super Bowl champion and the 1992 and 1994 NFL MVP.
Troy Polamalu is a former Pittsburgh Steelers strong safety who was a member of two of the Steelers' Super Bowl championship teams (XL, XLIII). He is an eight-time Pro Bowler who, in 2010, was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year.
O.J. Simpson, nicknamed "The Juice," is a former running back who played for the Buffalo Bills and San Francisco 49ers. He is a Pro Football Hall of Famer, four-time rushing champion and the only player in NFL history to rush for more than 2,000 yards in a 14-game season.
Drew Brees is a quarterback who currently plays for the New Orleans Saints. He is one of the most prolific passers in NFL history, leading the passing record seven times, breaking Johnny Unitas' record in 2012. He has also passed for more than 5,000 yards in a season five times, a feat no other quarterback has done.
Aaron Rodgers is a quarterback for the Green Bay Packers. He is a member of the Super Bowl XLV championship team against the Pittsburgh Steelers. During this time, he earned MVP honors after throwing for 304 yards and three touchdowns.
Sammy Baugh was a professional football player and coach who played for the Washington Redskins as a quarterback, defensive back and punter. He is a Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee, four-time NFL passing champion and two-time NFL championship winner.
Rod Woodson is a retired safety and cornerback who played for the Pittsburgh Steelers, San Francisco 49ers, Baltimore Ravens and Oakland Raiders during his 17-year career. He was the 1993 NFL Defensive Player of the Year, after recording eight interceptions and 95 tackles.
Troy Aikman was a Dallas Cowboys quarterback who was the 1989 No. 1 overall draft pick. He is a 2006 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee, six-time Pro Bowler and the first starting quarterback to win three Super Bowls in a four-year span.
Ed Reed is a former safety who played for the Baltimore Ravens, Houston Texans, and the New York Jets. One of the greatest safeties in NFL history, he was selected to nine Pro Bowls, retired with 64 career interceptions and, in 2004, was named the NFL Defensive Player of the Year.
Michael Irvin, nicknamed "The Playmaker," is a former Dallas Cowboys wide receiver and Pro Football Hall of Famer. Along with Emmitt Smith and Troy Aikman, he is known as one of the triplets – the Cowboys' key players who helped the team earn three Super Bowl championships.
Bruce Smith is a retired defensive end who played for the Washington Redskins and the Buffalo Bills, the latter with which he made four consecutive Super Bowl appearances. He is a two-time Defensive Player of the Year and the NFL's all-time leader with 200 career sacks.
Terry Bradshaw is a former Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback and a 1989 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee. He is a four-time Super Bowl champion and two-time Super Bowl MVP. In 1978, he was named the NFL MVP after throwing for a league-best 28 touchdown passes.
Alan Page is a retired Minnesota Vikings defensive tackle who is considered to be one of the greatest linemen to play the game. He is a 1988 Pro Football Hall of Fame inductee and the first defensive player to win the MVP Award. After football, he embarked on a legal career, becoming a jurist.
Gale Sayers, nicknamed "Kansas Comet," is a former Chicago Bears halfback and return specialist. He is considered to be one of the most difficult players to tackle due to his agility and elusiveness. Gale Sayers is a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, having been inducted in 1977.
Jack Ham is a retired Pittsburgh Steelers outside linebacker who is considered to be one of the greatest outside linebackers in NFL history. He is a four-time Super Bowl champion (IX, X, XIII, XIV) and a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Larry Fitzgerald is a wide receiver who currently plays for the Arizona Cardinals. So far, he has recorded 1,244 receptions for 15,545 yards and 110 touchdowns. He is an 11-time Pro Bowler, two-time NFL receptions leader, and two-time NFL receiving touchdown leader.