NFL Power Rankings: The Definitive Sneaker Edition

  • A.J. Green sneakers

    @ajgreen_18

    10. Cincinnati Bengals

    The Bengals crack the top 10 chiefly because of wide receiver A.J. Green, whose prolific sneaker collection includes limited edition Nikes and a host of different Air Jordans. Just as he does when it comes to the Bengals’ sneaker swag, Green has been known to carry his team on his back on the field too; he’s posted at least 65 receptions, 1000-plus yards, and 6-plus TDs in each of his four NFL seasons, and he’s the main reason why Cincinnati will likely be returning to the playoffs once again in 2015.

    A.J. Green sneakers
    @ajgreen_18
    A.J. Green sneakers
    @ajgreen_18
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  • DeSean Jackson sneakers

    @0ne0fone

    9. Washington Redskins

    DeSean Jackson is an Instagram legend, posting at a rate that would make most of us mere mortals blush. He also has an equally prolific thirst for posting sneaker photos, with everything from a casual pair of Nikes to some high end Android Hommes on the table. But D-Jax is not the only man in Washington who loves his sneakers; new signing Ricky Jean-Francois has an impressive collection in his own right, including a pair of the highly-coveted Oregon Air Jordan V.

    DeSean Jackson sneakers
    @0ne0fone
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  • Victor Cruz Air Jordan 2

    @teamvic

    8. New York Giants

    Victor Cruz is the reigning king of NFL sneakerheads, but unfortunately for him football is a team game. The salsa-dancing, occasionally-acting wide receiver has a sneaker collection as vast as almost any pro athlete, and there is hardly a day that goes by without Cruz posting a photo of what’s on his feet. The pitchman was limited to just six games last season before going down with a torn patellar tendon, and his return to health could give the Giants one of the NFL’s most lethal WR tandems as he lines up with Odell Beckham Jr.

    Victor Cruz Nike Air Max 95
    @teamvic
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  • @devin_anytime_hester_17

    7. Atlanta Falcons

    The Falcons’ Devin Hester isn’t just the greatest return man in NFL history. He’s also one of the league’s greatest collectors of sneakers, amassing a collection of Jordans to rival any of his peers in the league. The Falcons’ sneaker game got upped big time this offseason, too, as they signed Justin Durant to both fill out their linebacking corps and give them even more depth in the all-important sneakerhead department.

    Justin Durant sneakers
    @j.durant
    Justin Durant sneakers
    @j.durant
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  • Chicago Bears sneakers

    @j_bushrod7475

    6. Chicago Bears

    In terms of pure sneakerhead volume, it’s tough to match what the Chicago Bears have on their depth chart. Jacquizz Rodgers, Martellus Bennett, Kyle Long, and Jermon Bushrod are all big-time collectors, keeping their Instagrams fresh with new photos of their rapidly-expanding collections. While they don’t always match other teams when it comes to locking down rare sneakers, this legendary franchise has enough quantity to keep them in the conversation of the top sneaker squads in the league.

    Chicago Bears sneakers
    @kylelong75
    Chicago Bears sneakers
    @martellusb
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  • @mgilchr

    5. New York Jets

    The Jets don’t do a lot of winning on the field, but they are dominating off it. Recently-resigned cornerback Darrelle Revis not only has had his own signature Nike shoe, but has used his position with the company to compile a truly impressive collection. Speaking of “impressive,” newly-signed safety Marcus Gilchrist may not yet be a household name for football, but he sure is for his sneakers. One of the most obsessive sneakerheads in the game, Gilchrist has seemingly spent a huge chunk of his NFL paychecks on fresh kicks. At least, that’s what a look at his Instagram would suggest.

    Michael Gilchrist sneakers
    @mgilchr
    Michael Gilchrist sneakers
    @mgilchr
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  • Michael Vick sneakers

    @mikevick

    4. Pittsburgh Steelers

    The Steelers have shot up the rankings thanks to the preseason signing of Michael Vick, whose collection of signature shoes finds its way onto his Instagram on a regular basis. But Pittsburgh was already boasting a pretty strong sneaker game even before Vick rolled into town, with last year’s first round pick Ryan Shazier leading the way for the black and gold. Could we see the linebacker rock some Air Zoom Vicks this year? At this point, you’d be a fool to bet against it.

    Michael Vick sneakers
    @mikevick
    Air Jordan 10 Steelers
    @shazier

     

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  • Darnell Dockett sneakers

    @dockett90

    3. San Francisco 49ers

    While the San Francisco 49ers signed Darnell Dockett this offseason to help shore up their defensive line, the former Arizona Cardinal also brings something else to his new home in the Bay Area: sneakerhead credibility. His massive collection is full of Air Jordan retros and even CJ81s, and rivals that of any individual player in the NFL. Put him together on a team with fellow enthusiast Colin Kaepernick, and you have a San Fran squad that dominates the sneaker game on both sides of the ball.

    Darnell Dockett sneakers
    @dockett90
    Colin Kaepernick sneakers
    @kaepernick7

     

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  • adidas Yeezy 350 Boost Denver Broncos

    @millerlite40

    2. Denver Broncos

    The Broncos have some of football’s biggest names on their roster, and two of them (Von Miller and T.J. Ward) boast incredible sneaker collections to match their Pro Bowl-caliber skills on the field. Ward’s University of Oregon roots mean he is never short on rare Nikes, whether it’s an Oregon PE or Air Jordan retro. Miller, who reps adidas, has been known to rock anything from Classics to Yeezys, often getting early editions of whatever new sneaker the 3-Stripes plan on dropping next.

    Air Jordan 12 T.J. Ward
    @bossward43
    Nike Kyrie 1 T.J. Ward
    @bossward43

     

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  • Joe Haden sneakers

    @joehaden23

    1. Cleveland Browns

    Finally, a championship for Cleveland! When you get married in LeBron 8s like Joe Haden did, it’s going to be hard to beat you in any kind of sneakerhead power ranking. Haden’s Air Jordan collection might have more sheer volume than any pro athlete around, and he may have more LeBrons than LeBron himself. Haden’s collection alone is probably enough to give this team the top spot. (If you add in his recently-released former teammate Phil Taylor, who also owns an almost equally huge set of Foams and Jordans, the gap gets even wider.)

    Joe Haden sneakers
    @joehaden23

     

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  • A.J. Green sneakers
  • DeSean Jackson sneakers
  • Victor Cruz Air Jordan 2
  • Chicago Bears sneakers
  • Michael Vick sneakers
  • Darnell Dockett sneakers
  • adidas Yeezy 350 Boost Denver Broncos
  • Joe Haden sneakers

With the 2015 NFL regular season set to begin in earnest today, questions abound about basically every aspect of the new season: Can the Patriots repeat? Who will be this year’s breakout stars? Who will rise to the level of the NFL’s elite teams?

It’s a funny thing, the beginning of the new year. Storylines like the ones above are basically the same every season, and likewise everybody who watches football all of a sudden becomes an expert. Not only that, but they relish sharing their opinions, making their own personal guarantees about who will finish where and why. It’s all a bit over-the-top, especially considering that every year even the greatest preseason prognosticators are proven wrong.

So while what you’ll see here is a set of power rankings, it’s definitely not what you’ll get in hundreds of other places. While we are interested in ranking the teams, we could not care less about what they do on the field.

In recent years, professional athletes have become important figures in the world of fashion. In particular, football players have been known to invest an enormous amount of time and attention into how they look off the field, especially when it comes to their sneaker collections. Guys like DeSean Jackson, Joe Haden, and Victor Cruz may be prolific performers on the field, but their shoe game might be even more impressive than their football skills.

Even though many of them will never get their own signature shoes or even make the highlight reels, NFL players of all skill levels still add value to their teams by contributing some truly incredible sneaker collections. These sneakerheads finally get their due as we look at the NFL Power Rankings: The Definitive Sneaker Edition.

Follow Doug on Twitter at @dcsibor

image via @joehaden23