Number 49 on the NFL Network’s “Top 100” is Mike Haynes. Haynes was one of the greatest defensive backs of all time. Haynes was drafted in 1976 in the first round as the fifth pick by the New England Patriots. He later would go on to play with the Oakland Raiders.
Haynes was picked out of Arizona State. He played in 177 games over 14 seasons. Because of the era in which he played, he got no fan vote.
Mike Haynes had a lot of class. He had a career consisting of 46 interceptions and 688 yards with two touchdowns. Also, he was in nine Pro-Bowls and played a role in winning Super Bowl XVIII.
Haynes was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 1997.
Number 48 on the NFL Network’s “Top 100” is Red Grange. Grange played here in Illinois at the University of Illinois. The NFL did not draft, and in fact the Bears’ owner, George Halas, was concerned about the success of the NFL. As a result, he got Red Grange to sign with the Bears, and immediately the team went on a 17-game “barnstorming” tour.
Grange was a major drawing card to the NFL, and was a major reason it succeeded. He played 96 games over 10 seasons.
Something that is not well-known is that Red Grange suffered a major injury that kept him out an entire season. He received a knee injury. This injury prevented him from cutting as he once did, and also had a major impact on his speed. He never was the same type of runner again, but became a great defensive player.
Red Grange, despite his notoriety, also did not have a fan ranking. He joined the Hall of Fame in 1963.
Number 47 on the NFL Network’s “Top 100” is Ray Nitschke, who was a linebacker for the Green Bay Packers. Nitschke was drafted out of the University of Illinois. He was drafted in 1958 in the third round as the 36th pick. He would go on to play 190 games during 15 seasons.
Nitschke was a nice enough fellow off of the field, but on the field was very mean and aggressive and considered the prototype of a middle linebacker.
His career can be summed up quite easily. He had “25 interceptions and five fumble recoveries” on five NFL title teams and two Super Bowl winners.
Even though he played long ago, he does have a current fan ranking of 67.
Ray Nitschke was enshrined into the Hall of Fame in 1978.
Hall of Fame Website, “Mike Haynes”
NFL Network Website, “Mike Haynes DB”
You Tube Website, “NFL Top 100 Players #49-Mike Haynes”
Hall of Fame Website, “Harold “Red” Grange”
NFL Network Website, “Red Grange RB”
You Tube Website, “NFL Top 100 Players #48-Red Grange
Hall of Fame Website,”Ray Nitschke”
NFL Network Website,Ray Nitschke LB”
You Tube Website, “NFL Top 100 Players #47-Ray Nitschke”