Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Marvin Harrison grabs a pass against the Detroit Lions in a Thanksgiving Day game, November 25, 2005 in Detroit. Harrison caught three touchdown passes and the Colts defeated the Lions 41 to 9.

Who are the best football players of all time from the Philadelphia area? We have been putting together rosters of only local guys for all 4 teams. First we did the active rosters, and there were some mixed results. The Eagles actually wound up with a decent team, and the Sixers could be in the playoffs. But the Flyers and the Phillies? Well they would pretty much be riding the coattails of a few great players, with a lot of mediocrity elsewhere on the roster. But now we are moving on to the All-Timers. We already did Sixers, and saw them get led by two of the best players in NBA history. But would the all time NFL squad look like with local guys?

We put together that list, picking the best starters at each position on Offense, Defense, and Specials Teams. Who is the best QB from the Philly area? What legendary Safety grew up around here? And what trio of great WRs all grew up near Philly? Our area might not be as well known for creating great Football players as some southern states like Texas and Georgia. But you can still put together one hell of a team from guys born in or near Philadelphia.

The rules to be eligible for the team are simple. If your hometown is closer to Philly than any other NFL city, you can make the list.


97.5 The Fanatic has put together rosters of the best professional athletes from the Philadelphia area who could make up rosters of the four major sports franchises.


Here is the All-Time Roster of Football Players From The Philadelphia Area:

  • QB- Matt Ryan- Exton, Pa

    ATLANTA, GEORGIA - SEPTEMBER 12: Matt Ryan #2 of the Atlanta Falcons throws a pass during the second half against the Philadelphia Eagles at Mercedes-Benz Stadium on September 12, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia.

    (Photo by Todd Kirkland/Getty Images)

    It essentially came down to Matt Ryan, Matt Schaub, or Joe Flacco. Not that those guys are bad QBs, but when you are talking All-Time greats, I was hoping there was a Hall of Fame Caliber guy. Maybe they can work something out with Pittsburgh who have a claim to Johnny Unitas, Joe Montana, Jim Kelly, George Blanda, and Dan Marino. Matt Ryan was easily the most productive of this group, and has an All-Pro to his name. So he gets the spot. To his credit, he was a very good QB, just not on the level of Marino or Montana.

  • RB- Franco Harris- Fort Dix, NJ

    Franco Harris #32,  Running back for the Pittsburgh Steelers during the NFL/AFC Divisional playoff game on 19 December 1976 at the Memorial Stadium, Baltimore, Maryland, United States. The Steelers won the game 40 - 14.

    (Photo by Bob Grieser/Allsport/Getty Images)

    The pride of Rancocas Valley Regional High School in Mt Holly NJ. I would know, because I went to the same school. I saw the entire trophy case dedicated to him. Harris is a Hall of Famer, a 4 time Champion, a Super Bowl MVP, a 9-time Pro Bowler, and one of the greatest players in Steelers history. And he was involved in one of the greatest plays in NFL history, the Immaculate Reception.

  • RB- LeSean McCoy- Harrisburg, Pa

    PHILADELPHIA - NOVEMBER 07:  LeSean McCoy #25 of the Philadelphia Eagles runs the ball against the Indianapolis Colts on November 7, 2010 at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Eagles defeated the Colts 26-24.

    (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

    The rule is you go to whatever city you are closer to, and Harrisburg is closer to Philly than Pittsburgh. I obviously don’t need to explain to Eagles fans how great McCoy is. He is one of the best running backs in team history, and the franchise leader in rushing yards. He accomplished that despite Chip Kelly pushing him off the team for some reason while he was still in his prime.

  • WR- Marvin Harrison- Philadelphia, Pa

    Indianapolis Colts  wide receiver Marvin Harrison grabs  a pass  against the Detroit Lions in a Thanksgiving Day game, November 25, 2005 in Detroit.  Harrison caught three   touchdown passes and the Colts defeated the Lions 41 to 9.

    (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

    Without a doubt, the best WR from our area is Marvin Harrison. The Hall of Famer made 8 Pro Bowls, 3 All-Pro teams, led the league in receiving yards twice, and finished his career with 128 TDs. He also has a son, Marvin Harrison Jr, who is projected to be a top 5 pick this year, and could easily crack this list 10 years from now.

  • WR- Irving Fryar- Mount Holly, NJ

    20 Oct 1996:  Wide receiver Irving Fryar #80 of the Philadelphia Eagles is wrapped up by linebacker Zach Thomas of the Miami Dolphins during the Eagles 35-28 win at Veterans Stadium in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

    Mandatory Credit: Andy Lyons /Allsport

    Speaking about Rancocas Valley, Irving Fryar also hails from there. He has the most Touchdowns (84) for any player from NJ in league history. Fryar made 5 Pro Bowls in his 17 year career between the Patriots, Eagles, Dolphins, and Washington.

  • WR- Andre Reed- Allentown, Pa

    23 Jan 1994:  Wide receiver Andre Reed of the Buffalo Bills catches the ball as Kansas City Chiefs defensive back Bruce Pickens covers him during a playoff game at Rich Stadium in Orchard Park, New York.  The Bills won the game, 30-13.

    Mandatory Credit: Rick Stewart / Stringer

    This Eagles team certainly would not lack playmakers. They already have one Hall of Fame WR, why not add another one? Andre Reed spent 15 of his 16 seasons with the Bills, racking up 13,198 yards and 88 total touchdowns. With Reed, Harrison, and Fryar running routes, they will make any QB look like a Hall of Famer.

  • TE- Frank Wycheck- Philadelphia, Pa

    19 Sep 1999: Frank Wycheck #89 of the Tennessee Titans carries the ball during the game against the Ceveland Browns at the Adelphia Coliseum in Nashville, Tennessee. The Titans defeated the Browns 26-9.

    Mandatory Credit: Brian Bahr /Allsport

    Wycheck did not have the most impressive career stat wise. It was solid, but not All-Time great material. But he was a solid player for the Oilers/Titans for years. And he had a big part to play for the greatest play in Titans history, the Music City Miracle. It was Wycheck who took the handoff, before passing it across the field to Kevin Dyson, who preceded to throw a 75 yard TD pass downfield to beat the Bills.

  • RT- Erik Williams- Philadelphia, Pa

    https://x.com/90s_cowboys/status/1435276937782571020?s=20

    Having a Cowboy on the team may feel wrong, but for over a decade Philly native Erik Williams held down the right side of the Cowboys O-Line, and did so at a high level. He made 4 Pro Bowls, 2 All-Pro teams, and helped them win 3 Super Bowls in the 90s. We can be proud of him for being from Philly and having a great career. And still hate him for helping the Cowboys win 3 Super Bowls.

  • RG- Jahari Evans- Philadelphia, Pa

    New Orleans Saints guard Jahri Evans against the Indianapolis Colts at Veterans Memorial Stadium in Jackson, Mississippi on August 26, 2006. The Colts won 27-14.

    (Photo by Al Messerschmidt/Getty Images)

    Coming out of a Division II college in Pennsylvania, no one expected much from Evans. But he went on to be one of the best OGs of his era. He played 12 seasons, 11 with the Saints, and made 4 All-Pro Teams, 6 Pro-Bowls, and made the All-Decade Team for the 2010’s. Philly loves an underdog, and Evans was an underdog who rose to true greatness. You could even make the case he belongs in the Hall of Fame.

  • C- Chuck Bednarik- Bethlehem, Pa

    Pro Football Hall of Fame on Twitter: "Chuck Bednarik will forever be known as one of the hardest hitters in football history, as well as a two-time NFL Champion with the @Eagles.On the eight-year anniversary of Bednarik's passing, we celebrate his legacy. #HOFForever pic.twitter.com/lZkqVddNHe / Twitter"

    Chuck Bednarik will forever be known as one of the hardest hitters in football history, as well as a two-time NFL Champion with the @Eagles.On the eight-year anniversary of Bednarik's passing, we celebrate his legacy. #HOFForever pic.twitter.com/lZkqVddNHe

    More known for his work at Linebacker, Bednarik also played Center for the Eagles. He would basically stay on the field the entire game, even taking some special teams snaps. So he will play both for this hypothetical Eagles team as well.

  • LG- Mike Munchak- Scranton, Pa

    NASHVILLE, TN - NOVEMBER 27:  Coach Mike Munchak of the Tennessee Titans smiles as he leaves the field after a win over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers at LP Field on November 27, 2011 in Nashville, Tennessee. The Titans won 23-17.

    (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

    The interior of the Eagles O-Line is perhaps the strongest part of this team. They have two Hall of Famers in Bednarik and Munchak, and one borderline Hall of Famer in Evans. Munchak made 2 First Team All-Pros, and then 6 2nd Team All-Pros. He also made the All-Decade team for the 1980s.

  • LT- Bryant McKinnie- Woodbury, NJ

    BALTIMORE - NOVEMBER 20:  Bryant McKinnie #78 of the Baltimore Ravens defends against the Cincinnati Bengals at M&T Bank Stadium on November 20, 2011 in Baltimore, Maryland. The Ravens defeated the Bengals 31-24.

    (Photo by Larry French/Getty Images)

    Of all the Offensive Linemen on this team, McKinnie has the least personal accolades. He has one Pro Bowl to his name, and wont be going into the Hall of Fame like the other guys. But he had a successful 12-year career, mostly with the Vikings.

  • DE- Micah Parsons- Harrisburg, Pa

    PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA - NOVEMBER 05: Micah Parsons #11 of the Dallas Cowboys reacts against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field on November 05, 2023 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

    (Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images)

    The edge rushers for the All-Time team stay the same as it was with the active team. Just because of all the edge rushers out of this area, none have had the same success as Parsons and Reddick have to this point in their careers. Parsons is one of the bets players period right now. And by the end of his his career, his place on this list will probably be unquestioned with the pace he is one.

  • DT- Joe Klecko- Chester, Pa

    CANTON, OHIO - AUGUST 05: Joe Klecko speaks during the 2023 Pro Football Hall of Fame Enshrinement Ceremony at Tom Benson Hall Of Fame Stadium on August 05, 2023 in Canton, Ohio.

    (Photo by Nick Cammett/Getty Images)

    The recently inducted Hall of Famer had to have a place here. Klecko played 12 years, 11 of which were with the Jets, playing both DE and DT. He finished his career with 2 All-Pro selections and 78 sacks. He also played his College ball at Temple, so he gets double credit for staying local in College.

  • DT- Christian Barmore- Philadelphia, Pa

    FOXBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS - OCTOBER 17: Christian Barmore #90 of the New England Patriots reacts after a play in the second quarter against the Dallas Cowboys at Gillette Stadium on October 17, 2021 in Foxborough, Massachusetts.

    (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

    I had a really hard time finding great DTs from the area. Even Klecko spent most of his time as a DE. Maybe I missed someone, and if I did, please let me know about out. But in the end, I just ended up going with another guy from the Active All-Philly Area team. Barmore is in the midst of a career season, and has turned into a force, especially against the run.

  • DE- Haason Reddick- Camden, NJ

    PHILADELPHIA, PENNSYLVANIA - NOVEMBER 05: Haason Reddick #7 of the Philadelphia Eagles reacts during the fourth quarter in the game against the Dallas Cowboys at Lincoln Financial Field on November 05, 2023 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

    (Photo by Mitchell Leff/Getty Images)

    Like Parsons, Reddick made both the active and All-Time team. Reddick has been of the most dangerous pass rushers in the league these past several seasons. And while both he and Parsons still have a lot to prove to be considered All-Time greats, you can see them being considered as much when it is all said and done. And like Klecko, he is a Temple alum. So he is Philly through and through.

  • LB- Chuck Bednarik, Bethlehem, Pa

    Kevin Gallagher on Twitter: "November 20, 1960CONCRETE CHARLIE DRILLS GIFFORD#Eagles linebacker Chuck Bednarik - "Concrete Charlie" - knocks out the #Giants' Frank Gifford in Philadelphia's crucial 17-10 win at Yankee Stadium.A hit for the ages and the signature moment of the Eagles' 1960 NFL... pic.twitter.com/TVfJklaxJo / Twitter"

    November 20, 1960CONCRETE CHARLIE DRILLS GIFFORD#Eagles linebacker Chuck Bednarik - "Concrete Charlie" - knocks out the #Giants' Frank Gifford in Philadelphia's crucial 17-10 win at Yankee Stadium.A hit for the ages and the signature moment of the Eagles' 1960 NFL... pic.twitter.com/TVfJklaxJo

    We already talked about Bednarik at center. But he is probably even better known as a Linebacker. His crushing hit on Frank Gifford is still one of the greatest plays in NFL History. Bednarik is one of the first names that comes up when you talk about All-Time great Eagles. So him also being from the area, makes him a no-brainer to make this list.

  • LB- Dave Robinson, Mount Holly, NJ

    Green Bay Packers on Twitter: "#Packers great Dave Robinson immortalized. http://t.co/kxxGVseP8j pic.twitter.com/mM8jdRjKlt / Twitter"

    Packers great Dave Robinson immortalized. http://t.co/kxxGVseP8j pic.twitter.com/mM8jdRjKlt

    Dave Robinson was helping run the Packers defense back in the days of Vince Lombardi. He got enshrined in both the Pro and College Football Hall of Fames, one of only 22 Penn State Alumni to accomplish both feats.

  • CB- Troy Vincent- Trenton, NJ

    3 Oct 1999: Troy Vincent #23 of the Philadelphia Eagles intercepts the ball during the game against the New York Giants at the Giants Stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Giants defeated the Eagles 16-15.

    Mandatory Credit: Al Bello /Allsport

    After starting his career with the Dolphins, Troy Vincent joined the Eagles in 1996, and went on to start at Corner for them for 8 years, including into the Jim Johnson era. He and Bobby Taylor were the dynamic duo at corner before it was Lito Shepard and Sheldon Brown, and you could argue they were an even better corner duo. Vincent made 1 All-Pro team and finished his career with 47 interceptions.

  • CB- Herb Adderley- Philadelphia, Pa

    Pro Football Hall of Fame on Twitter: "The entire Pro Football HOF family mourns the passing of Herb Adderley. He was a great player and an even greater man. Herb left an indelible mark on the Game and was respected tremendously by players and personnel across the league.#HOFForever | @packers | @dallascowboys pic.twitter.com/wvLqvnlA40 / Twitter"

    The entire Pro Football HOF family mourns the passing of Herb Adderley. He was a great player and an even greater man. Herb left an indelible mark on the Game and was respected tremendously by players and personnel across the league.#HOFForever | @packers | @dallascowboys pic.twitter.com/wvLqvnlA40

    Yet another member of that Green Bay defense in the Lombardi era, and like Robinson Adderly was a Hall of Famer too. He made 5 All-Pro teams, and finished his career with 48 interceptions. He also was the cornerback for the All-Decade team in the 60s.

  • S- Deron Cherry- Riverside, NJ

    23 Dec 1990: Defensive back Deron Cherry of the Kansas City Chiefs tackles a San Diego Chargers player during a game at Jack Murphy Stadium in San Diego, California. The Chiefs won the game, 24-21.

    Photo By: Stephen Wade / Getty Images

    Deron Cherry is not in the Hall of Fame. But he probably should be. How are you going to put a guy on the All-Decade team in the 80s, but say he is not a Hall of Famer. If he is one of the best Safeties over an entire decade, you are a Hall of Famer in my book. The Rutgers alumni also has made 3 All-Pro teams and holds a tie for the record for most interceptions in 1 game (4).

  • S- Emlen Tunnell- Bryn Mawr, Pa

    Pro Football Hall of Fame on Twitter: "Emlen Tunnell was both the first African-American to be enshrined into the Hall of Fame, as well the first African-American player in @Giants history.On the 47-year anniversary of Tunnell's passing, we remember his impact, which extends far beyond football. #HOFForever pic.twitter.com/rw2L8InmZK / Twitter"

    Emlen Tunnell was both the first African-American to be enshrined into the Hall of Fame, as well the first African-American player in @Giants history.On the 47-year anniversary of Tunnell's passing, we remember his impact, which extends far beyond football. #HOFForever pic.twitter.com/rw2L8InmZK

    Just a quick rundown of a few of the many great accomplishments of Emlen Tunnel. His 79 career interceptions are still the second most in NFL history, over 60 years after retiring. He was the first black player to be enshrined into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. He was named to the All-Decade team in the 50s. And he retired with several other record that have since been broken such as consecutive games played, Punt Return Yards, and Interception yards. To be it mildly, he is a legend, and one of the best Safeties in NFL history.

  • K- Brandon McManus- Philadelphia, Pa

    NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE - NOVEMBER 13: Brandon McManus #8 of the Denver Broncos kicks a field goal during the second quarter against the Tennessee Titans at Nissan Stadium on November 13, 2022 in Nashville, Tennessee.

    (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

    Our area does not develop kickers and punters well. McManus was not only the best option, he was pretty much the only option besides another active kicker, Matt Amendola. McManus is a solid kicker. In 10 seasons, he has just 2 seasons where his FG% dropped below 80%.

  • P - Christian Pulisic- Hershey, PA

    MILAN, ITALY - NOVEMBER 28: Christian Pulisic of AC Milan reacts during the UEFA Champions League match between AC Milan and Borussia Dortmund at Stadio Giuseppe Meazza on November 28, 2023 in Milan, Italy.

    (Photo by Marco Luzzani/Getty Images)

    I couldn’t find a single even passable punter in the history of this area. None. I went back to the 30s in Pro Football Reference for Pa, NJ, and De, and found no one who lasted for than a couple years as a punter. So instead of putting some punter who wasn’t even good enough to last in the NFL, I just got the best soccer players from our area. Pulisic is good enough to play overseas and is one of the stars of the US Soccer team. He might be a terrible punter, but he has a better chance to be good than any of the actual punters from our area.

     

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