My favorite NFL players when I was young

With the NFL starting tomorrow I thought it was a perfect time to write about my favorite football players from when I was a young.

I’m sure I’m no different from most football fans in the fact that I love offensive players and this list will cover them exclusively.   There will also be plenty of 49ers on the list since that is my favorite team.

The running backs:

Barry Sanders- how could you not love Barry?  He is the most exciting back I have ever seen.  He could turn a five yard loss into a three yard game all by himself and look spectacular doing it.  His escape ability was just incredible and left me speechless on numerous occasions.  I was in shock the day that Sanders retired because I thought he had at least five years left in the tank.  That was a sad day for all football fans because he was so fun to watch.

Eric Dickerson- Dickerson was the best running back I saw as a kid.  I think the reason was because he ran so differently than every other back.  His upright running style looked so graceful.  He was the first autograph I wanted of all pro athletes in football.

Roger Craig- Craig often gets overlooked in the pantheon of great 49ers but not in my eyes.  Craig was the ultimate dual threat back in San Francisco and a key piece to a couple of Super Bowls.

Tom Rathman- Rathman was an absolute beast and one of the best fullbacks I have ever seen.  He always seemed to be right in the thick of the action as a blocker but was very skilled as a rusher and receiver as well.

The wide receivers:

Jerry Rice- I’m sure I would’ve been a huge fan of Rice whether or not he played for the Niners.  He seemed to catch every single ball thrown his direction and had ridiculous breakaway speed. I don’t ever remember anyone catching him from behind.

Cris Carter- I was young when he had all of his problems early in his career so that never affected my few of him.  All I remember is the guy who seemed to make impossible catches on a weekly basis.  He should have made the Hall of Fame a couple of years ago in my opinion.  He is easily one of the best wide outs I have ever seen.

Randy Moss- any guy who can destroy the Cowboys with only three catches has to be on my list.  Moss is probably the most physically gifted receivers that this world had ever seen.  When he was focused and playing all out, there wasn’t a man on this planet who could stop him and was an absolute pleasure to watch.

Sterling Sharpe- I hated the Packers growing up but still managed to like Sterling Sharpe.  His career ended too early.  I wish he could’ve played more than just seven seasons.  I bet he’s the only guy whose career ended after scoring 42 touchdowns in his last three seasons.

The quarterbacks:

Steve Young- what’s not to like about the left-handed 49er from BYU.  Young seemed to always make something out of nothing, especially when he had to tuck the ball and run.  Definitely one of the best rushing quarterbacks in NFL history.

Warren Moon- Moon had a cannon for an arm and seemed to create big plays all the time.  I remember him fondly from his Houston Oilers days but what really stands out to me were his years in Minnesota. I was a little older then and could really appreciate the kind of skills he had.


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