List of NFL Nicknames - Players


Nicknames for individual players, or small groups of individual players.

Nickname Player(s) Description
A-Train Allstott, Mike !Mike Alstott How he was as difficult to tackle as a freight train; "A" is a reference to his surname initial
Ageless Wonder Green, Darrell !Darrell Green His remarkable ability to maintain a high level of play during the latter years of his 20 year career.
AD/All Day or AD or AP Peterson, Adrian !Adrian Peterson Given to him by his parents because he would run "all day", his initials
Amish Rifle Fitzpatrick, Ryan !Ryan Fitzpatrick Given to him by Buffalo Bills fans because of his scraggly beard during the 2010 NFL season.
Anytime Hester, Devin !Devin Hester His ability to return kicks and punts for touchdowns any time. Inspired from his mentor Deion "Prime Time" Sanders.
The Assassin Tatum, Jack !Jack Tatum
Bad Moon Rison, Andre !Andre Rison Given nickname by ESPN's Chris Berman in reference to CCR's song "Bad Moon Rising".
Bambi Alworth, Lance !Lance Alworth For his speed, and his spectacular and graceful moves.
Beast Mode Lynch, Marshawn !Marshawn Lynch He used this term to describe himself during an interview. Afterward fans continued to use the term.
Big Ben Roethlisberger, Ben !Ben Roethlisberger His imposing size
Big Game Holt, Torry !Torry Holt
Big Daddy Wilkinson, Dan !Dan Wilkinson His 6'5", 340 lb frame
Big Snack Hampton, Casey !Casey Hampton Apparent reference to his large size and penchant for eating
Blonde Bomber Bradshaw, Terry !Terry Bradshaw His blonde hair combined with his tendencies to throw the ball down the field, hence "bomber"
Broadway Joe Namath, Joe !Joe Namath Reference to the wide avenue that ran through New York - the city where he played QB with the New York Jets
Breesus Brees, Drew !Drew Brees Play on Brees's last name and his perception as the savior of Saints Football.
Brian Crushing Cushing, Brian !Brian Cushing Play on Cushing's last name and his hard-hitting tackles.
Bullet Bob Hayes, Bob !Bob Hayes Reference to his incredible speed. Won gold medal and set world record in the 100 m at 1964 Summer Olympics.
Burner Turner, Michael !Michael Turner Given both because of his ability to break long runs and because it rhymes with his last name. Got the name in college.
Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid Csonka, Larry !Larry Csonka & Jim Kiick Miami Dolphins running back duo from 1968–1974; named after the movie about the famous outlaws.
Bus Bettis, Jerome !Jerome Bettis Because of his ability to carry tacklers on his back like a "bus"
Captain Checkdown Edwards, Trent !Trent Edwards Name given to quarterback Trent Edwards for his refusal to throw the deep ball, preferring instead to dump off to running backs or tight ends.
CJ2K, CJ2 Chris Johnson CJ for Chris Johnson, 2K for his 2000 yard rushing season, 2 as a play on CJ2K and a reference to his poor perfomance towards the beginning of the 2011 season
Comeback Kid multiple Nickname given to any player, particularly quarterbacks such as Tom Brady, Roger Staubach, John Elway, Eli Manning and Joe Montana for leading teams in comebacks.
Concrete Charlie Bednarik, Chuck !Chuck Bednarik Because of missing only 3 games in his 13 season of playing, as well as his offseason employment as a concrete salesman.
Crazy Legs Hirsch, Elroy !Elroy Hirsch
Crystal Chandelier Chandler, Chris !Chris Chandler Was plagued by concussions and injuries, referencing his presumed fragility
Crunch Bunch New York Giants 1981 !Harry Carson, Brian Kelley, Lawrence Taylor and Brad Van Pelt The 1981–83 New York Giants linebacking corps noted for their hard-hitting play and for generating many quarterback sacks, Taylor in particular. Mario Sestito of Troy, New York is credited with coining the name after a NY Giants newsletter at the time called 'Inside Football' held a contest to name this defensive unit.
Curtis "My Favorite" Martin Martin, Curtis !Curtis Martin Pun on the television show My Favorite Martian; bestowed by ESPN's Chris Berman
Deebo Harrison, James !James Harrison His similarity in appearance and demeanor to the character in the movie Friday played by Tom Lister, Jr.
Diesel Riggins, John !John Riggins Because of his powerback style of play - compared to a truck that ran on diesel.
Dr Death Thomas, Skip !Skip Thomas Because of his physical tackling, and apparent resemblance to the cartoon character
Don't Cross The Moats, Arthur !Arthur Moats Name bestowed after Moats laid a clean, but particularly devastating hit on Brett Favre, ending Favre's streak of consecutive starts as well as leading to Favre's retirement at the end of the 2010 season. Moats are large trenches surrounding castles that served as a line of defense.
Double Trouble Williams, DeAngelo & Jonathan Stewart !DeAngelo Williams and Jonathan Stewart Carolina Panthers running back duo from 2008–present, previously known as Smash and Dash
D.T. or D.D.T. Thomas, Derrick !Derrick Thomas His initials. Also went by D.D.T. (bestowed by fans) which stood for "Dangerous Derrick Thomas" and after the toxic synthetic pesticide
Dump Truck Davenport, Najeh !Najeh Davenport Allusion to an incident which allegedly occurred when he was in college as well as a take on one-time teammate Jerome Bettis' nickname, "The Bus"
Dwight Hicks and the Hot Licks San Francisco 49ers 1984 !1984 San Francisco 49ers defensive secondary led by Dwight Hicks
Dynamic Uno Wilson, David !David Wilson His all-around skills at Running Back
Edge James, Edgerrin !Edgerrin James Shortening of his first name
Earth, Wind and Fire New York Giants 2008 !Brandon Jacobs, Derrick Ward& Ahmad Bradshaw 2008 NY Giants running backs; Jacobs = Earth, Ward = Wind, Bradshaw = Fire
ELIte Eli Manning Play on the name his first name, Eli, and the word Elite. Used by New York Giants fans in reference to quarterback Eli Manning claiming that he considers himself in the same elite class of quarterbacks as Tom Brady during a preseason interview. Manning backed up this claim by beating Brady and the New England Patriots in Super Bowl XLVI
The Face Cleaver Weaver, Leonard !Leonard Weaver
Fast Willie Parker, Willie !Willie Parker His speed
Fatso Donovan, Art !Art Donovan
Fitzmagic Fitzpatrick, Ryan !Ryan Fitzpatrick His ability to turn around a long-struggling Buffalo Bills offensive attack after several years of mediocrity. It was later turned around to Fitztragic when his play, as well as the team's, declined.
Flash 80 Rice, Jerry !Jerry Rice His stunning plays combined with his number, 80
The Flyin' Hawaiian Polamalu, Troy !Troy Polamalu His style of diving into receivers and diving into pass paths for interception, and for Polamalu's Polynesian ancestry (Polamalu is in fact Samoan, but Hawaiian rhymes better)
Fragile Fred Taylor, Fred !Fred Taylor Perception of being injured constantly
Freak Moss, Randy !Randy Moss His freakish athletic abilities
Freak Kearse, Jevon !Jevon Kearse Combine stats off the charts for someone his size
FredEx Mitchell, Freddie !Freddie Mitchell Because he "always delivered"
The Freezer Raji, B.J. !B.J. Raji A play off the nickname of William "The Refrigerator" Perry whom the Bears utilized in a similar manner during the 1980s. "Freezer" also alludes to the Packers home stadium, Lambeau Field, which is known for its freezing temperatures in December and February.
Fun Bunch Washington Redskins 1981 !Early 1980s Washington Redskins wide receivers and tight ends This groups choreographed touchdown celebrations led to a league-wide ban of "excessive celebration" in 1984.
Galloping Ghost Grange, Harold !Harold "Red" Grange Because no one could catch him
Ghost (or "Space Ghost") Casper, Dave !Dave Casper
Golden Boy Hornung, Paul !Paul Hornung A reference to his blonde hair and his alma mater, Notre Dame, with its gold helmets and the golden dome of the main building on the Notre Dame campus. Notre Dame students and alumni are also referred to as "Golden Domers."
The Gravedigger Brown, Gilbert !Gilbert Brown Earned nickname in honor of his celebratory dance following a thunderous tackle."
Golden Graham Graham, Jimmy !Jimmy Graham This is a play on his last name to refer to his all-star talent. Golden comes from the fact that the New Orleans Saints secondary color is gold. He is also nicknamed this after his breakout 2011-2012 NFL Season at the Tight end position with the New Orleans Saints. "
Gronk Gronkowski, Rob ! Rob Gronkowski Shortning of his last name which is Gronkowski."
The Gunslinger Favre, Brett !Brett Favre He earned this nickname for his intrepid attitude on the field, his legendary toughness and ability to come back from and play through injuries, and the fact that he threw bullet passes so hard he was known to break his receiver's fingers. The "gunslinger mentality" refers to Favre's tendency to fearlessly force throws to covered receivers, a high risk/high reward style of play.
Hacksaw Reynolds, Jack !Jack Reynolds Earned his nickname in 1969 by cutting an abandoned 1953 Chevrolet Bel Air in half with a hacksaw after his previously unbeaten University of Tennessee team returned from an embarrassing 38-0 road loss to Ole Miss.
The Hammer Tuggle, Jessie !Jessie Tuggle Earned his nickname because of impact of hits he put on opposing ball carriers and QBs. Played his entire career with the Atlanta Falcons and was part of the 1998 "Dirty Birds" team.
He Hate Me Smart, Rod !Rod Smart Self-bestowed nickname Smart used on the back of his jersey during his time in the XFL. The nickname, which became a symbol of the XFL, stuck with Smart after he joined the NFL.
Hefty Lefty', 'Pillsbury Throwboy', 'J-Load Lorenzen, Jared !Jared Lorenzen His size and left-handed throwing motion
Hit and Run Jones, Thomas !Thomas Jones and Leon Washington New York Jets running back duo from 2008–2009
The Hotel Adams, Flozell !Flozell Adams His 6-7, 340-pound frame
The House Johnson, Herman !Herman Johnson His 6-7, 386-pound frame
Housh Houshmandzadeh, T.J. !T.J. Houshmandzadeh Play on the first syllable of his name.
Hogs !Hogs Washington Redskins !1980s and early 1990s Washington Redskins offensive line Name first used by offensive line coach Joe Bugel during the team's 1982 training camp prior to winning Super Bowl XVII.
The Human Joystick/ X-Factor Hall, Dante !Dante Hall Nickname given to him by coach Vermeil because of his big play ability in the return game
Iron Head Heyward, Craig !Craig Heyward His hard-nosed straight-ahead, bruising running style.
Iron Mike Ditka, Mike !Mike Ditka
J.J. Swatt"' Watt, J.J. !J.J. Watt Used by multiple media outlets for his ability to tip passes at the line of scrimmage. Began towards the start of the 2012 NFL season
Jake "daylight come and you gotta" Delhomme Delfomme, Jake !Jake Delhomme Used by Chris Berman, a play on Delhomme's name and the Banana Boat Song by Harry Belafonte.
Joe Cool Montana, Joe !Joe Montana His ability to remain calm in pressure situations
Juice Simpson, O.J. !O. J. Simpson His initials (which also are used to refer to orange juice)
JPP Pierre-Paul, Jason !Jason Pierre-Paul His initials
Kam "Bam Bam" Chancellor Chancellor, Kam !Kam Chancellor Given for his big, hard hits
K.G.B. Gbaja-Biamila, Kabeer !Kabeer Gbaja-Biamila His initials
Kansas Comet Sayers, Gale !Gale Sayers "Kansas Comet" was stuck on him by the Director of Sports Information at the University of Kansas.
The Kitchen Newton, Nate !Nate Newton Since he was presumably larger than "The Fridge"
L.J. Johnson, Larry !Larry Johnson His initials
L.T. Taylor, Lawrence !Lawrence Taylor His initials
LT Tomlinson, LaDainian !LaDainian Tomlinson His initials
Law Firm Green-Ellis, BenJarvus !BenJarvus Green-Ellis Play on the length of his full name and its resemblance to the name of a law firm, also because since his 2008 debut in the NFL he has never fumbled the football
Lights Out Merriman, Shawne !Shawne Merriman Because of his reputation of being a hard hitter; has been shortened to "Lights" by teammates in interviews
Long Gone Dupre, L.G. !L.G. Dupre An alternate take on his initials, and a reference to his ability to run away from competitors
Machine Gun Kelly Kelly, Jim !Jim Kelly Jim Kelly was perhaps best known for running the Bills' "No-Huddle Offense", which was fast-paced and denied opposing defenses the opportunity to make timely substitutions, establishing the Buffalo Bills as one of the NFL's most successful and dangerous offenses. A reference to mobster George "Machine Gun" Kelly.
Mad Duck Karras, Alex !Alex Karras Because of his short legs, he appeared to waddle like a duck.
Mad Stork Hendricks, Ted !Ted Hendricks
Manster White, Randy !Randy White Half Man, Half Monster.
Marion the Barbarian Barber, Marion III !Marion Barber III Because of his physical running style and reputation for repeatedly breaking tackles
Marks Brothers Clayton, Mark !Mark Clayton and Mark Duper Prolific Miami Dolphins wide receiver duo of the 1980s who shared the same first name (also a reference to the Marx Brothers. They were also christened "Mark Twain.")
Mean Joe Greene, Joe !Joe Greene
Meast Taylor, Sean !Sean Taylor Half Man, half beast
Megatron Johnson, Calvin !Calvin Johnson A reference to his large frame, comparing him to a Transformers character
Mercury Morris, Eugene !Eugene Morris
The Milkman Watt, JJ !JJ Watt
The Minister Of Defense Reginald Howard "Reggie" White A reference to his Christian ministry as an ordained Evangelical minister and his preferred position as a defensive end on the teams for which he played
Missile Ismail, Qadry !Qadry Ismail His speed (particularly as a kick returner), and also a play on his brother Raghib Ismail's nickname, Rocket
Mongo McMichael, Steve !Steve McMichael Taken from the character in the film Blazing Saddles, played by Alex Karras.
Moose Johnston, Daryl !Daryl Johnston Given to him by Cowboys backup quarterback Babe Laufenberg for his blocking ability and opening holes for runningback Emmitt Smith.
Mossiah, The !The Mossiah Moss, Randy !Randy Moss The Savior for the Vikings. In his rookie year, Moss led the Vikings towards one of the most powerful offenses in the NFL.
MoJo Jones-Drew, Maurice !Maurice Jones-Drew RB for the Jaguars. Nickname was first used when he added his late grandfather's last name (Jones) to his original last name (Drew) out of respect. "Mo" - Maurice, "Jo" - Jones.
Mr. Rodgers Rogers, Aaron !Aaron Rodgers QB for the Packers. His last name is a homonym of that of long-time children's television host Mister Rogers.
The Natural/ Optimus Prime Johnson, Andre !Andre Johnson WR for the Houston Texans. Nicknamed due to his incredible natural talent and his team colors and due to his last name being Johnson just
like Calvin "Megatron" Johnson.
Neon Deion Sanders, Deion !Deion Sanders His flashy play and the rhyme with his first name
Nigerian Nightmare Okoye, Christian !Christian Okoye To his homeland as well as to the difficulty he posed to defenses
Night Train Lane, Dick !Dick Lane Due to his fear of flying, Lane road a night train to away games while the rest of the team flew
Ocho Cinco Johnson, Chad !Chad Johnson Self-bestowed pidgin Spanish reference to his uniform number (85); originally named Chad Johnson, legally changed name to "Chad Ochocinco" in 2008 (changed back to Johnson in 2012). Also self-refers as "Esteban Ochocinco"
Papa Bear Halas, George !George Halas The founding father of the Chicago Bears
Playmaker Irvin, Michael !Michael Irvin For his ability to defeat tight coverage, even double coverage, and make big plays.; possibly self-bestowed
Pocket Hercules Jones-Drew, Maurice !Maurice Jones-Drew For his durability as a featured back, his strength to break tackles and to make crucial pancake blocks (most notably on Shawn Merriman) despite his diminutive size.
Porcelain Pennington Pennington, Chad !Chad Pennington Derogatory reference to his repeated season-ending injuries
Pork Chop Womack, Floyd !Floyd Womack
Posse Monk, Art !Art Monk, Gary Clark and Ricky Sanders Trio of wide receivers on the Washington Redskins of the late 1980s through the early 1990s:
Prime Time Sanders, Deion !Deion Sanders His ability to step up at critical moments and make big plays; possibly self-bestowed
Pudge Heffelfinger !William Heffelfinger
Purple Jesus Peterson, Adrian !Adrian Peterson His Vikings uniform color; see also Chris Johnson's nickname, "Light Blue Jesus"
Purple People Eaters Minnesota Vikings !Mid-1970s Minnesota Vikings defensive line of Alan Page, Carl Eller, Gary Larsen and Jim Marshall Reference to the purple uniforms of the Vikings and a takeoff of the 1960s song "One Eyed One Horned Flying Purple People Eater"
Quiet Storm Colston !Marques Colston Reference to Colston's shyness and ability to make big plays.
Red Rifle Dalton !Andy Dalton Reference to Dalton's red hair.
Refrigerator or Fridge Perry, William !William Perry His immense size in comparison to other defensive linemen
Resolute Runner Williams, Ryan !Ryan Williams His fearless running ability
Revis Island Revis, Darrelle. !Darrelle Revis His ability to cover wide receivers was compared to being stranded on an island
RG3 Griffin III, Robert !Robert Griffin III His name
Road Runner Wilson, David !David Wilson His speed, quickness, agility, and dynamic running ability; given to him while he was at Virginia Tech
Rocket Ismail, Raghib !Raghib Ismail His speed; given to him while he was at Notre Dame
Roger the Dodger Staubach, Roger !Roger Staubach His ability to avoid the pass rush; given to him while at Navy
Run DMC McFadden, Darren !Darren McFadden His speed; given to him in beginning of 2011 season, also a play on his initials.
The Samoan Head Hunter Polamalu, Troy !Troy Polamalu His ability to confuse the opposing offense and make bone crushing tackles.
Scramblin' Fran Tarkenton, Fran !Fran Tarkenton His ability to avoid defenders in the backfield and penchant for running with the ball if the pass play broke down
Silverback Harrison, James !James Harrison His strength, which is likened to that of a silverback gorilla
Sixty Minute Man Bednarik, Chuck !Chuck Bednarik Playing on both offense and defense (and thus playing all sixty minutes of the game); is sometimes applied generally to any player that does this
Slash Stewart, Kordell !Kordell Stewart The punctuation mark used when describing his dual position as a quarterback/receiver.
Slingin' Sammy Baugh, Sammy !Sammy Baugh His affinity for passing the ball, particularly deep downfield
Slot Machine Welker, Wes !Wes Welker His effectiveness lining up between the split end/flanker and the linemen (i.e. "the slot")
Smash and Dash Johnson, Chris & LenDale White !Chris Johnson & LenDale White Running back duo of the Titans starting in 2008; White being Smash for his 'power running back' skills and Johnson being Dash because of his astonishing breakaway speed
Smash, Dash, and Tash Barber, Marion III; Felix Jones !Marion Barber III, Felix Jones, and Tashard Choice Dallas Cowboys' 3 man running attack starting in 2008; nod to the Titans' "Smash and Dash"; Barber = Smash (power back), Jones = Dash (speed back), Choice = Tash (contraction of first name)
Snake Ames, Knowlton !Knowlton Ames His speed and elusiveness
Snake Stabler, Ken !Ken Stabler Earned his nickname from his coach following a long, winding touchdown run
Snake Plummer, Jake !Jake Plummer His ability of "snaking" around out of pressure in the pocket; also rhymes with first name
Smurfs Clark, Gary; Alvin Garrett !Gary Clark, Alvin Garrett, and Charlie Brown 1980s Redskins' receiving corps; because of their diminutive size (Garrett was 5'7”, Clark was 5'9”, and Brown the tallest at 5'10”), comparing them to the tiny blue comic and cartoon characters
Spiderman Webb, Joe !Joe Webb Drafted as a wide receiver by the Minnesota Vikings, on Brett Favre's insistence Joe Webb was signed to the team as a back-up QB. Went on to lead Vikings to a win in Philadelphia, against Michael Vick and the Eagles playing a must-win game. Lovingly called Spiderman, due to his last name.
Superman Newton, Cam !Cam Newton Due to both his unusually athletic physique and habit of pretending to rip open his jersey to reveal a 'S' underneath when scoring a rushing touchdown.
Sweetness Payton, Walter !Walter Payton Earned in college at Jackson State University for his slick moves on the field, his amazing dancing skills, and his friendly personality.
TD Davis, Terrell !Terrell Davis His initials, also referring to the abbreviation for "touchdown"; Davis holds the record for most rushing touchdowns in one Super Bowl game with three
The GOAT Rice, Jerry !Jerry Rice Earned from teammates and other NFL players and Sportscasters, referring to the abbreviation of the Greatest Of All Time.
T-Mobile Tyrod Taylor His Initials and Scrambling ability
Tebow Time Tim Tebow Used as Tim Tebow for making comebacks in games
T.O. Owens, Terrell !Terrell Owens His initials
Tom Terrific Brady, Tom !Tom Brady Given after Brady's terrific play through much of the 2000s, including 3 Super Bowls, 2 League MVPs, 2 Super Bowl MVPs, and the NFL regular season record for passing touchdowns (50) in 2007.
The Tasmanian Devil Polamalu, Troy !Troy Polamalu He plays with a style that borders on reckless, and, like the cartoon character, he is something of whirling dervish.
Three Headed Monster Duce Staley, Correll Buckhalter and Brian Westbrook Trio of star running backs that all played for the Philadelphia Eagles in 2003.
The Throwin' Samoan Thompson, Jack !Jack Thompson A quarterback whose birthplace was American Samoa
Thunder & Lightning Keenan McCardell & Jimmy Smith 1996-2001 Jaguars wide receiver tandem; McCardell = Thunder, Smith = Lightning
Thunder and Lightning Dayne, Ron; Barber, Tiki !Ron Dayne & Tiki Barber 2000 Giants running back tandem; Dayne = Thunder, Barber = Lightning
Thunder and Lightning Watters, Ricky; Charlie Garner !Ricky Watters & Charlie Garner 1995–1997 Eagles running back tandem; Watters = Thunder, Garner = Lightning
Tommy Gun aka Touchdown Tommy Maddox, Tommy !Tommy Maddox Nickname given for Maddox's passing ability, making the Steelers more of a downfield team.
Touchdown Tommy Vardell, Tommy !Tommy Vardell He was given the nickname in college by Stanford head coach Dennis Green after scoring four touchdowns against Notre Dame.
Tyler Rose !The Tyler Rose Campbell, Earl !Earl Campbell Campbell is from Tyler, Texas
Two-Minute Tommy Kramer, Tommy !Tommy Kramer Had a knack for late game come-from-behind wins.
Uptown Upshaw, Gene !Gene Upshaw A play on his name, but also his role as a guard when run-blocking.
Wash and Wear Jones, Thomas; Leon Washington !Thomas Jones & Leon Washington 2008–2009 Jets duo of running backs
Weapon X/Wolverine Dawkins, Brian !Brian Dawkins His hard-hitting, game-changing play style. As well as his flying tackles.
Well Dressed Amani Toomer Toomer, Amani !Amani Toomer Given by Chris Berman, play on Armani suits.
White Shoes Johnson, Billy !Billy Johnson His choice of footwear at a time when most players wore black cleats
Wheaton Iceman !The Wheaton Iceman Grange, Harold !Harold "Red" Grange A part-time job he once held delivering ice in his hometown of Wheaton, Illinois
Wildman Nitschke, Ray !Ray Nitschke
Windy City Flyer and Miami Missile Hester, Devin !Devin Hester Hester's speed and a nickname for the city of Chicago, in which he plays; bestowed by WBBM 780 radio-announcer Jeff Joniak
World Rice, Jerry !Jerry Rice He acquired the nickname "World" at Mississippi Valley State University because there wasn't a ball in the world he couldn't catch.

Read more about this topic:  List Of NFL Nicknames

Famous quotes containing the word players:

    Yeah, percentage players die broke too, don’t they, Bert?
    Sydney Carroll, U.S. screenwriter, and Robert Rossen. Eddie Felson (Paul Newman)

    The players have often mentioned it as an honour to Shakespeare, that in his writing, whatsoever he penned, he never blotted out [a] line. My answer hath been, “Would he had blotted a thousand.”
    Ben Jonson (c. 1572–1637)

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    Martina Navratilova (b. 1956)