[Article Updated August 15th, 2020]
Hello there Packers fans, we’re glad to go on this historical journey with you.
In 2018 the Packers celebrated their 100th season, in 2019 the NFL is celebrating its 100th season and in 2020 the Packers will celebrate their 100th season in the NFL — here we’ve compiled the 100 greatest Packers of all-time.
As you know, the history of the Green Bay Packers is incredibly vast. The franchise has been around for a century and has won a championship in a record six different decades. There are so many notable names jostling for remembrance in the team’s remarkable history that a list such as this as subjective as it is respectful to all generations of Packers’ players.
This list wasn’t put together for any specific agenda, other than for the enjoyment of Green Bay fans. Some may agree with where certain players are ranked, others are certain to disagree.
This countdown isn’t scientific, but it wasn’t haphazardly thrown together either. The idea was hatched while sitting around a summer campfire, but then the work started. There was as much research conducted as there were rough drafts rewritten. For months the players on this list were debated and argued, but ultimately ranked using one criteria above the rest.
We asked ourselves:
How significantly did this player influence the unparalleled history, and culture, of the Green Bay Packers?
With that question at the front of our mind’s we assembled this top 100 countdown.
Of course we valued–and appropriately weighed–championships, statistics, individual honors and significant moments or plays made by every player on our list. We also attempted to quantify the leadership and other intangibles possessed by all players that made our preliminary list of all-time Packers (which was over 200 players).
From those 200 players considered, the list was whittled down to what you see today.
With that said, we maintain that just because a certain player is ranked higher on this list than another player at the same position doesn’t mean we think they were a better player necessarily — we just think that their influence on the culture in Green Bay was more significant.
Thus, these aren’t necessarily the top 100 football players to ever play in Green Bay or strictly the most talented. This list is the top 100 Green Bay Packers of all-time. Like we said, this was more of an art than a science.
In some ways we are looking at this countdown in the same way that although Ringo Starr wasn’t the best drummer in the world in his era, but he was, without a doubt, the best drummer for the Beatles. Which were the biggest band of their era, perhaps of all-time.
The inaugural list was created in the summer of 2017 and was updated for the first time in the summer of 2020. It will be updated every three years to accommodate new players that may possibly make the list.
Note: To be on this list a player must be either a former player or an active player with at least 10 seasons played in Green Bay. For example, if a player leaves the team after their fifth season, they instantly become eligible for the list. If they stay with the Packers for awhile, they become eligible after their 10th season in Green Bay. This helps keep a better context to active players that may appear on this list.
Every time we update this list, every three years, there will be a maximum of three players added. So yes, there may be a backlog of talent entering the Packers’ all-time Top 100. But it’s supposed to be prestigious.
When a player gets ‘bumped’ from the list they’ll be added to the ‘formerly top 100 ranked honorable mention list.’ This hasn’t occurred yet, but will when the list is updated in August, 2020.
The first few out, we’ll call them Honorable Mentions: DT Mike Daniels, LB Nick Barnett, CB Mark Lee and RT Greg Koch. A few men from the team’s earliest days that we cannot properly analyze are linemen Jug Earp and Cub Buck and quarterbacks Charlie Mathys and Red Dunn.
Active Players That May Make the Top 100 Someday:
Aaron Jones, Davante Adams, David Bahktiari, Corey Linsley, Za’Darius Smith, Kenny Clark and obviously a handful of younger players.
Formerly Top 100 Players (from the 2017 Inaugural List):
Ken Bowman C (1964-1973): Snapped the ball to Bart Starr on his “Ice Bowl” sneak.
Josh Sitton G (2008-2015): One of the best to ever guard Aaron Rodgers.
Vonnie Holliday DE (1998-2002): A burgeoning star at the turn of the millennium.
Here they are, the Top 100 Green Bay Packers of All-Time:
100. Ken Ruettgers LT (1985-1996): A longtime stater that blocked Favre’s blindside when he became the world’s greatest quarterback.
99. Sam Shields CB (2010-Present): Had a knack for making the big play at the right time.
98. Russ Letlow G (1936-1946): Green Bay’s first ever draft pick. Two championships later, it’s safe to say it worked out.
97. Jesse Whittenton CB (1958-1964): Underrated facet of Vince Lombardi’s first two Championships.
96. Travis Williams KR, HB (1967-1970): Short career, but a revolutionary return man.
95. Don Majkowski QB (1987-1992): The “Majik Man” was dynamic in 1989 and, unfortunately, got hurt at the right time in 1992.
94. Ryan Pickett DT (2006-2013): The phrase “Spill it, Pickett” still gives Packers fans goosebumps today.
93. Tim Lewis CB (1983-1986): If not for a neck injury, this ballhawk would still be a household name today.
92. Ron Kramer TE (1957-1964): One of the most effective players on the Packers’ dominant 1962 team.
91. Mark Tauscher T (2000-2010): Should be known as “Mr. Reliable”; is known as a fan-favorite.
90. Dave Hanner DT (1952-1964): The “Hawg” excelled in the 1950s and snagged two rings in the 1960s.
89. Desmond Howard KR (1996): In one season in Green Bay he rewrote the record books and was named Super Bowl XXXI MVP. Not bad.
88. Ted Fritsch FB (1942-1950): Amassed a whopping 31 touchdowns; led the league with 10 in 1946.
87. Willie Buchanon CB (1972-1978): A player Packers fans took pride in during “The Lean Years”.
86. Robert Brooks WR (1992-1998): Popularized the “Lambeau Leap” during his unforgettable 1995 season.
85. B.J. Raji DT (2009-2015): “The Freezer” saved his best play for the Packers’ 2010 Super Bowl run.
84. Mike Flanagan C (1998-2005): A Pro Bowler that anchored one of the best offensive lines in team history.
83. Ezra Johnson DE (1977-1987): Pass rushing specialist that doesn’t receive as much credit as he deserves.
82. Randall Cobb WR (2011-2018): One of the great Bear Killers in Packers history. He routinely stepped-up in the big moments.
81. Johnnie Gray S (1975-1983): A consistent safety that routinely got his hands on the ball (22 interceptions and 22 fumble recoveries).
80. Tobin Rote QB (1950-1956): One of the lone bright spots for the Packers of the 1950s.
79. Edgar Bennett RB (1992-1996): An elite pass-catching back that helped bring the Lombardi Trophy home. Among the best running backs in team history.
78. Donny Anderson RB, P (1966-1971): A dynamic pass-catching running back that revolutionized how players punt the football, even today.
77. Mark Chmura TE (1993-1999): Brett Favre’s longtime “safety blanket” was named to the Pro Bowl three times.
76. Fred Carr LB (1968-1977): An incredibly durable linebacker that was invited to three Pro Bowls. Didn’t receive enough credit because of the era he played in.
Click the Number 2 to see who ranks 75-51