Rice played 303 games over 20 seasons, spending 15 years in San Francisco (1985-2000) building the greatest wide receiving resume in NFL history. Rice owns just about every major career receiving record, including receptions (1,549), receiving yards (22,895) and total touchdowns (208). He won three Super Bowls and made 13 Pro Bowl teams.
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WR Jerry Rice
Rice doesn't have much competition as the greatest wideout ever. He clearly outclassed his rivals, Minnesota's Cris Carter and Oakland's Tim Brown. Before Rice broke nearly every record, the greatest wide receivers of all time were thought to be Don Hutson and Steve Largent. Hutson does have Rice beat in leading the NFL in receptions 11 times (Rice did it just twice). Largent held the big three career receiving records (catches, yards, touchdowns) before Rice came along. Going forward, it would take mighty efforts from Randy Moss or Terrell Owens to take any of Rice's career records.
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RB Emmitt Smith
While helping re-establish the Cowboy dynasty, Smith made quite a name for himself in the Dallas backfield from 1990-2002 and finished his illustrious career as the NFL's all-time leading rusher. Like classmate Rice, Smith won three Super Bowls. An eight-time Pro Bowl selection, Smith supplanted Walter Payton as the all-time leading rusher in 2002 and finished his career with 18,355 career yards.
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RB Emmitt Smith
Is Smith the greatest running back of all time? It's debatable. He stood the test of time better than the other greats to break Walter Payton's record, but he also ran behind one of the greatest offensive lines in NFL history. Detractors argue that Jim Brown was more dominant or Barry Sanders was more explosive. Still, Smith's durability and consistency, perhaps neither sexy nor awe-inspiring, are the reason why many dub him the greatest.
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G Russ Grimm
Part of the "Hogs" offensive line in Washington, Grimm played 140 games over 11 seasons, all for the Redskins, from 1981-91. He started at left guard as a rookie and teamed with Joe Jacoby to protect Joe Theismann's blind side through 1985. Grimm made four straight Pro Bowls from 1983 to 1986 and won three Super Bowls. He grew into one of the best assistants in the league and is currently an assistant head coach for the Cardinals.
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LB Rickey Jackson
Jackson helped key the Saints' turnaround in the 1980s, beginning as a rookie in 1981 when he was the team's leading tackler and recorded eight sacks. He made six Pro Bowls and was named first-team All-Pro in 1986, '87, '92 and '93. Jackson played his final two seasons in San Francisco and retired in 1995 with 128 career sacks, not counting his rookie total because the stat did not become official until 1982.
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CB Dick LeBeau
A senior enshrinee, LeBeau played a decade without missing a game during a 14-year career with the Detroit Lions. He started 171 straight games, an NFL record at corner. He made three straight Pro Bowls in the mid-1960s and lead the NFL with nine interceptions in 1970. LeBeau finished his career with 62 picks, second among cornerbacks when he retired in 1972. Since, LeBeau has shown one of the best defensive minds in football as a Steelers assistant.
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RB Floyd Little
Like LeBeau, Little is a senior nominee. He played solely for the Broncos from 1967-75 and, after initially being used as a return specialist, became the Broncos' first 1,000-yeard rusher with an NFL-leading 1,133 yards in 1971. Little made two AFL All-Star teams and three NFL Pro Bowls. Altogether, he amassed 12,000 all-purpose yards and 54 total touchdowns.
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DT John Randle
Undrafted, Randle fought his way to become a monster on the Vikings defense in the 1990s. He recorded 137 1/2 sacks (leading the league with 15 1/2 in 1997). He was a first-team All-Pro from 1993-98 and made six straight Pro Bowls from 1994-99. With Randle leading the defense, the Vikings helped unseat the Bears atop the NFL Central and battled with Brett Favre's Packers throughout the decade for supremacy in the black-and-blue division. He finished his career with three seasons in Seattle, making the 2002 Pro Bowl.
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