The NFL is no different from any other sports league when it comes to star power and how they approach things such as promoting their athletes and who they choose to push as faces of the league. Players such as Patrick Mahomes are pushed for their ability on the field, while Tom Brady is pushed due to his popularity and playing in big markets in his career.
However, there are many players that never get the push from the NFL or the fans. For a variety of reasons, these players never truly got the recognition that they deserved during their time on the football field.
10 Marc Bulger
Marc Bulger is one of the great forgotten quarterbacks of the early 2000s. Everyone remembers how Kurt Warner exited the Rams, but nobody remembers who replaced him. It was a young Bulger straight out of West Virginia who replaced the Hall of Famer in his second year in the league.
Bulger, despite just being a sixth-round pick, immediately proved his worth as a player. He would rattle off multiple Pro Bowl seasons during his nine years in St. Louis. His career plummeted fast after leaving the Rams though. After spending a year as a backup in Baltimore, he retired in 2011.
9 John Condo
Long snappers never get any love, and it makes sense. They have a singular job, which is to snap the ball to the punter or kicker on special teams. They take the field only a few times a game. However, some long snappers, such as Jon Condo, made the most of their time on the field.
Condo was the most consistent long snapper in the league for nearly 15 years. He made the Pro Bowl twice during his lengthy career.
8 Kyle Vanden Bosch
Kyle Vanden Bosch is an interesting case of a player. He was a physical and tough defensive end who was a great player in the league and played for over a decade. Despite that, he never got a whole lot of recognition from fans.
Luckily, he did earn some accolades in the league. He made the Pro Bowl three times, while as a member of the Tennessee Titans from 2005 to 2009. He retired from the sport in 2013.
7 Trent Green
Trent Green is another great forgotten quarterback of the early 1990s and 2000s. He was the starter who Kurt Warner famously replaced in St. Louis in 2000, as the Rams won a Super Bowl. However, Green has more to his resume than sitting on the bench to get a ring.
Green’s most memorable run outside of St. Louis was in Kansas City. While there, he made the Pro Bowl twice during his six-season stint in a Chiefs uniform.
6 Tamba Hali
While the Kansas City Chiefs are now a team that is attempting to become a dynasty, many fans forget how terrible they were for so long prior to that. Many players suffered because of that, and none dealt with it more than Tamba Hali.
Hali played for the Chiefs for 12 seasons. During that stretch, he was named to six Pro Bowls and two All-Pro teams for his destructive work as a linebacker.
5 Brian Orakpo
Brian Orakpo was a monster when on the D-Line during his time in the league The Texas alumni were drafted in 2009 to the Washington Redskins, where he was dominant. During his six seasons in DC, he was selected to three Pro Bowls.
Orakpo left Washington in 2014 and signed with the Titans. There, he was selected to yet another Pro Bowl team. He retired in 2018 after spending ten seasons in the league.
4 Paul Posluszny
Paul Posluszny was drafted in 2007 to the Buffalo Bills with high expectations. However, he didn’t really hit his prime for another three years until he left New York and headed to Florida to sign with the Jacksonville Jaguars.
Posluszny spent seven seasons in a Jags uniform, where he was one of the best linebackers in the league. Due to Jacksonville being terrible during that timeframe, he didn’t earn many accolades, being selected to only one Pro Bowl.
3 Derrick Johnson
Derrick Johnson was Tamba Hali’s compadre on defense on the Kansas City Chiefs for over a decade. From 2005 to 2017, he was one of the best linebackers in the league, and it was hard to argue against him. Despite the Chiefs not winning many games, Johnson made it hard for any opposing offensive player.
Johnson was selected to four Pro Bowls, and two All-Pro teams during his time in KC. Following a one-off season in Oakland, he retired in 2019.
2 Marques Colston
Marques Colston holds nearly every New Orleans Saints receiving record, and they’ve had some incredible pass-catchers walk through the door there. He was Drew Brees number one target for the majority of his career. However, unlike the future Hall of Famer, he didn’t get much recognition.
In fact, Colston doesn’t actually have any accolades, besides his Super Bowl ring. Despite having nearly 10,000 yards receiving, he wasn’t selected to a single Pro Bowl or All-Pro team during his ten seasons in the league.
1 Steven Jackson
Steven Jackson had the unfortunate situation of being on the St. Louis Rams from 2004 to 2012. During that stretch, he was arguably the greatest running back in the league. However, nobody noticed, because the team was just that bad.
Jackson was selected to multiple Pro Bowls and All-Pro teams during his seasons in a Rams uniform. He had brief stints in Atlanta and New England before calling it quits in 2016.