Top 30 NFL Players of the 1980s

Top 30 NFL Players of the 1980s

LOS ANGELES, CA – JANUARY 1: Cliff Branch #21 of the Los Angeles Raiders runs the ball against Mel Blount #47 of the Pittsburgh Steelers during the AFC Divisional playoff game at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on January 1, 1984 in Los Angeles, California. The Raiders won 38-10. (Photo by George Rose/Getty Images)

The 1980s were some of the best years in NFL history, and featured some of the all-time best players, but who were the best of the best?

The 1980s may be the best decade in the history of the NFL. While the 49ers were the unquestioned team of the decade, there were multiple teams that won at least two Super Bowls. The parody around the NFL was higher than many remember.

The league was also stacked with talent, and today we look at the 30 best players from the 1980s.

Who were the best NFL players of the 1980s?

30. Mel Blount

Alright, whatever you do, don’t tell Mel Blount he’s No. 30 on the list. He is one of the greatest defensive backs of all time, but his glory years were in the 1970s with the Steel Curtain. That said, he had a great first half of the 1980s up until his retirement following the 1983 season.

Blount intercepted four passes in 1980, and was a Pro Bowler and First-Team All-Pro in 1981. He was one of the final remaining members of the legendary defense at the time of his retirement, and played well all the way through his final season. He would be higher on the list if he didn’t only play until 1983- that’s just too small a sample size to place him above other players on the list.

Regardless, Blount was fantastic throughout his career. Overall, he was a five-time Pro Bowler and was named All-Pro twice. Even in that short sample size, he made enough of an impact to earn a spot on the 1980s All-Decade team. He was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1989. He is easily one of the five best cornerbacks of all time, and also one of the toughest and most physical in a generation that was full of physical players.

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