Some NFL players are notorious for being on a certain team. Tom Brady with the New England Patriots, Peyton Manning with the Indianapolis Colts or Joe Montana with the San Francisco 49ers.
All three of these players played for different teams at the end of their careers. Manning and Brady won Super Bowls with their new franchises, Peyton with the Denver Broncos and Tom with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Even Joe Montana led the Kansas City Chiefs to an AFC Championship game.
These players have made their largest impact elsewhere. These players, iconic with one team or not, have played for teams most have forgotten about.
10 Tyrann Matheiu (Houston Texans)
Tyrann Matheiu is one of the best safeties of the 2010s, as a three time All-Pro and Pro Bowler from 2015-2021. Most know him best with the Kansas City Chiefs where he was an essential part of two straight Super Bowl rosters.
As well as the Chiefs, Matheiu was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals and played the first five seasons of his career in Arizona, tearing his ACL twice there. The team in between? The Houston Texans.
Matheiu played one season in Houston in 2018, starting all 16 games, intercepting two passes and making 89 tackles.
9 Darren Waller (Baltimore Ravens)
Darren Waller is a success story in every sense of the word. He’s seemingly conquered his demons di lui and has emerged into one of the NFL’s premier tight ends.
However, out of Georgia Tech, Waller entered into the NFL as a wide receiver. Not only that, but he was drafted by the Baltimore Ravens.
In his only two full seasons in the NFL (whether that be due to not seeing the field as a healthy scratch or due to injury), Waller has put up over 1,100 yards. His time di lui as a Raven was forgettable, but he remains an essential piece to Las Vegas’s offense.
8 Adrian Peterson (New Orleans Saints / Arizona Cardinals)
As his career has wound down, Adrian Peterson has now played for seven teams. The most notable being the team he was drafted by, won the Rookie of the Year for and won the MVP for, the Minnesota Vikings.
Yes, All Day is one of the greatest running backs of the 21st century, and after leaving Minnesota to play with so many teams, it would be easy to forget. Here’s two, and they make up Peterson’s entire 2017 season.
Peterson started with the Cardinals, his first team he had played for outside the Vikings, and was traded to the New Orleans Saints to end the season. This was a season where Peterson was a backup and his fall from grace really showed.
7 Michael Vick (Pittsburgh Steelers)
The greatest running quarterback of all-time has actually played for four teams, including his most well known Atlanta Falcons. With the Falcons, he experienced his highest highs and lowest lows.
After the scandals that kept him out of the league during the 2007 and 2008 seasons, Vick needed a fresh start and went to the Philadelphia Eagles, where he experienced his greatest pass of all-time to Desean Jackson.
Vick finished his career with the Pittsburgh Steelers, starting three games for them in 2015, fourteen years after his rookie season in 2001. Vick’s short stop during Ben Roethlisberger’s time on the Steelers was a forgettable one.
6 Reggie White (Carolina Panthers)
Perhaps the greatest defensive player of all-time, Reggie White made his name with the Eagles in the 1980s and the Green Bay Packers in the 1990s.
The Minister of Defense picked up a Super Bowl championship, two Defensive Player of the Year awards and eight All-Pro awards during this time before retiring after the 1998 season. However, what some may forget is that White pulled a Brett Favre and came back for the 2000 season.
This would see White finish his storied career for the Carolina Panthers, and he had easily his worst season of his career. Panthers fans may remember this, but outside that, fans will stick to the glory days of the ’80s and’ 90s when thinking of White.
5 Deion Sanders (Baltimore Ravens)
Deion Sanders isn’t known for the teams he played on, he’s remembered for the athlete he was, playing both football and baseball professionally. A ball hawk in every sense of the word, Neon Deion was a human highlight reel at cornerback in the ’90s.
Drafted by the Falcons, winning a DPOY award with the San Francisco 49ers and playing five seasons for the Dallas Cowboys, Sanders played for two other teams for far less fanfare. In 2000, Sanders spent the last year of his career with Washington, where he snagged four interceptions.
What people may forget, is Sanders would return to the NFL three years later to join the Baltimore Ravens for two seasons. Sanders was past his prime di lui and that made his run in Baltimore largely forgettable.
4 Joe Namath (Los Angeles Rams)
Joe Namath wasn’t a lifetime New York Jet? That’s right, the man who led the Jets to their only Super Bowl win, beating the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III in iconic fashion didn’t finish his career in the green and white.
Instead, Broadway Namath played his last four NFL games for the Rams. It doesn’t feel right. The Hall of Famer is the greatest QB in Jets history (although that isn’t saying much) and is synonymous with the team.
Unfortunately, Namath wasn’t able to stick around in LA too long, as his career was winding down anyway.
3 Jerry Rice (Seattle Seahawks)
The greatest wide receiver of all-time, Jerry Rice is a 49ers icon. Playing with the great Joe Montana and Steve Young, Rice won three Super Bowls with San Francisco.
However, Rice didn’t play his entire career with the 49ers, although he did leave for another Bay Area team in the Oakland Raiders. Rice played three and a half seasons with the Raiders, even making a Pro Bowl in his age 40 season with the silver and black.
What’s forgotten is where Rice ended his career, as a member of the 2004 Super Bowl Seattle Seahawks. The GOAT seemed to be quite fond of the west coast.
2 Brett Favre (Atlanta Falcons)
Who drafted Brett Favre? No shame in saying the Packers, where he spent 16 seasons. No, the Atlanta Falcons selected Favre with the 33rd overall pick in the 1991 NFL Draft.
Favre started two games for the Falcons before being shipped to Green Bay, where he would cement his place as a top ten QB of all-time, winning three MVPs and a Super Bowl. Favre even found success with the Jets and Vikings, making the Pro Bowl for these teams at the tail end of his career.
Rather than keep Favre and experience something positive in the ’90s, the Falcons missed out on one of the true greats.
1 Randy Moss (San Francisco 49ers)
Or Tennessee Titans.
Randy Moss has one of the most interesting careers of all-time, as he was one of the most talented players to step foot on a football field. What couldn’t Randy Moss do?
Finding success most in Minnesota and New England, and finding publicity with the Raiders, some may forget the last two teams Moss spent his storied career on. After he spent eight games with the Titans in 2010 Moss retired, then the 49ers were greedy and decided to employ another one of the top five greatest WRs ever when they brought Randy Moss out of retirement to suit up for them in 2012, even playing in the Super Bowl against the Ravens.
Only starting two games for San Francisco, Moss’s career may not have ended with an ideal team or an ideal performance, but all the more reason for him to be # 1.
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