He's been the best player at his position for most of his career, and he's easily the most consistent after 10 seasons. He's also as classy as they come.
2 of 7Damian Strohmeyer/SI
Ignore for a moment the divisive, megalomaniac persona that is T.O. When the 49ers drafted him, he was just Terrell Owens, a shy, unassuming kid who hoped to learn a few moves from Jerry Rice. Looks like he did.
3 of 7David Bergman/SI
He seemed like a long shot to do anything as long as Corey Dillon was a Bengal. As it turns out, he was the man who made Dillon expendable.
4 of 7Stephen Dunn/Getty Images
His reputation as a hard-hitting thug kept him out of the Pro Bowl for too many years with the Chargers. It wasn't until he joined the Patriots that he got the respect he deserved.
5 of 7Damian Strohmeyer/SI
We know -- this one's a no-brainer. Still, give Bill Belichick credit. He believed in Brady when few others did.
6 of 7John Biever/SI
He started out as a track guy, then blossomed into a reliable target for Brett Favre. He's averaged 73 receptions and 1,029 yards over the last four seasons while scoring 28 touchdowns during that time.
7 of 7John Biever/SI
Undrafted Free Agent
You might like Kurt Warner or Priest Holmes here, but neither of them became stars with the teams that originally signed them. Gates is redefining the position after three years with the Chargers.
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