In celebration of 22 Jump Street’s release on Digital HD and Blu-ray Combo Pack, and with Thanksgiving around the corner featuring plenty of great football, here’s a list of the NFL players we respect most for their qualities both on and off the field.
12. Russell Wilson
Always underestimated because of his size, Russell is the freak athlete that would become a fraternity’s ringer in every intramural sport. He’s constantly cool under pressure and reached the NFL’s highest pinnacle in only his second season. He then proceeded to kick his long time girlfriend turned wife to the curb after winning the Super Bowl, because Super Bowl winner pussy is on a whole other level, and everyone knows that. Russell has the uncanny ability to sweet talk the pants off the media, so I can only imagine how good his game is off the field. Plus, check out the crew he rolls around with.
11. Drew Brees
First off, Brees has several philanthropic causes dedicated to helping rebuild one of the finest party cities this great country has to offer, New Orleans, Louisiana. That alone should be reason enough for him to make this list. You want more? He’s southern born, was a brother of Sigma Chi at Purdue, and made everyone that doubted he’d ever be the same after a shoulder surgery forced him out of San Diego look pretty freakin’ stupid. He proceeded to light up scoreboards in NOLA and brought home a Lombardi trophy, giving all those slapdick doubters two big ol’ “fuck you” middle fingers.
10. Tom Brady
No one throws a dime of a touchdown pass and runs over to shit-talk the cornerback quite like Mr. Brady. Tom was that every-man back in college that people could connect with — and by every man I mean he was handed an internship for Merrill Lynch and had a bullshit major like General Studies. He’s the definition of success, and you may think that Tommy deserves to be higher on this list, especially with arm candy like Gisele Bundchen, but it’s no secret that she has him by the balls and essentially wears the pants in the relationship.
9. Blake Bortles
Trent Dilfer went on record saying that Blake had the most dude qualities he’s ever seen coming into the league. I know, solid analysis on Dilfer’s part, but he’s absolutely right. Since me and Bortles are such good pals, I can confirm that the kid has “it.” Even if he didn’t play football, he’s the type of guy that could walk into any fraternity on campus and get a bid before he finished signing in and getting a name tag. Unfortunately, George O’Leary doesn’t allow his players to rush, so we’ll never know Blake’s full potential as a Greek football legend. I guess settling for a Fiesta Bowl,
Lindsey Duke, and being the 3rd overall pick will have to suffice.
8. Rob Gronkowski
New England is widely considered the most professionally run organization in all of sports, abiding by the “Patriot way” and playing everything close to the chest. Yet, Gronk has in no way watered down or filtered who he is as an individual. He’s still the same lovable meathead that went to the University of Arizona, enjoys raging his balls off, and lives his life to the fullest.
7. Wes Welker
When you have a performance like Wes did at the Kentucky Derby — pounding down mint juleps, rolling his face off (allegedly), and throwing out $100 bills like confetti — you’re going to be considered for this list. Throw in the fact that he was a Phi Delt at Texas Tech and this video of him shamelessly dancing to “Rocky Top,” bringing the house down with Peyton, and he rightfully locks down a spot.
6. Jay Cutler
We already did an eloquent job breaking down why Jay deserves to be on this list, and that makes my job much easier by not having to repeat what was already said. You might think I’m doing Cutty a disservice by having him only so low on this list, but when you put 2 baby Cutlets into my junior high bae, Kristin Cavallari, I’m going to take revenge.
5. Aaron Rodgers
Rodgers has a Derek Jeter-esque quality in the way he approaches both the game and life. He’s laid back and relatively quiet, but will murder you on the field. He will then use the formerly frequently used championship belt celebration, which he has since rebranded and made his own, as the Discount Double Check. Rodgers rocks the shit out of the frat ‘stache, photobombs like a champion, and gets to go home to Olivia Munn. Yeah, he’s well worth a spot on this list.
4. Johnny Manziel
3. Matt Stafford
Born in Tampa, his family made the right call and moved to Texas where Stafford attended Highland Park High School. He then partied his ass off at Georgia and won a few games for the Bulldogs in the process.
Image via Deadspin
He, along with Calvin Johnson, took an 0-16 team that looked like it had less hope than the city it plays in and made them relevant for the first time in decades. He’s overconfident in his abilities and is always pushing the limits of what he can get away with.
2. Kyle Orton
Surprised he’s up so high? You shouldn’t be. Google “drunk Kyle Orton” and all of your questions as to why he’s second on this list will be answered. No one goes harder, or has set the bar lower for caring, than Orton. Believe it or not, he’s only 32. Yeah, fucking mind-blowing, right? He looks like a guy in his mid-40s that’s been through two nasty divorces and goes to his son’s little league games, even though he doesn’t have custody, to get into physical altercations with other parents while inappropriately intoxicated. Yet he’s somehow managed to have a well-paying career in the NFL for a decade without being very good. And he was a Pike at Purdue, too, so that counts for something.
1. Peyton and Eli Manning
The Manning brothers are those rare legacies that surprisingly don’t suck. Though they’re essentially the faces of goofy white America, they have completely owned it, and now one in every five commercials seems to have at least one Manning brother included.
They’re well-dressed, well-spoken, and well-polished in the pocket, as well as SEC alum, Super Bowl champs, and the picture perfect family repping the American dream to the fullest.