The Real Chicago Bears Top 25 Of All Time

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Chicago Bears Top 25
Credit: Chicago Sun-Times

Recently, with 2019 being the Bears 100th season, notable Chicago Bears all-time player rankings have been released. Frankly, some of them have left a lot to be desired. So I decided to get a group of hardcore Bears fans together and compile a real Chicago Bears all-time Top 25 ourselves.

How the list was created

How was the Chicago Bears all-time Top 25 list created? Here is how. I asked a group of individuals to create their own top 25 players lists independently, and of course, created a list myself. Then, I created a spreadsheet with every contributor’s list while assigning a point value to each player. For instance, if player A was first on three lists, second on two lists and fifth on another he would be awarded 12 total points. If a player failed to make any lists, however, was on one or more, he would be assigned 26 points for each list he did not appear on. I then took the aggregate point totals and sorted the list with the lowest number of points first, indicating a higher ranking, to the highest number of points last, indicating a lower ranking.

Tiebreakers were determined by two factors. By the way, it turned out there was no need for a third factor. First, whichever player appeared on more lists would be ranked ahead of the other. Secondly, if they appeared on the same number of lists, whoever had the highest individual ranking on a list would be placed ahead of the other.

Interestingly, a total of 45 players received votes from 10 different individuals who contributed. Without further ado, let’s get into this, starting with 25 and working our way to number one.

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Credit: Soldier Field Facebook

Real Chicago Bears All-Time Top 25

25. Kevin Butler – Kicker – 1985-1995

  • 1985 Super Bowl champion
  • Held Bears all-time scoring record with 1,116 points until 2015
  • Set NFL rookie scoring record with 144 points on 31 field goals while making all 51 extra point attempts. That record stood until 2014

24. Stan Jones – Offensive Lineman – 1954-1965

  • Seven Pro Bowl appearances
  • 3x First-Team All-Pro, 1x Second-Team All-Pro

23. George Halas – Wide Receiver, Defensive End – 1920-1929

  • One NFL title as a player, Five NFL titles as a coach
  • NFL 1920’s All-Decade Team

22. Red Grange – Halfback – 1925, 1929-1934

  • Two-time NFL champion
  • Three-time All-Pro
  • NFL 1920’s All-Decade Team

21. Matt Forte – Running Back – 2008-2015

  • Two Pro Bowl appearances
  • 2,035 carries, 8,602 yards, 45 touchdowns rushing, 487 receptions, 4,116 yards 19 touchdowns
  • Career rushing yards rank second all-time in Bears history
  • Holds five individual franchise records
Credit: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

20. Dan Fortmann – Offensive Guard – 1936-1943

  • Three-time NFL champion
  • Seven-time First-Team All-Pro
  • NFL 1930’s All-Decade Team

19. Jay Hilgenberg – Center – 1981-1991

  • 1985 Super Bowl champ
  • Seven Pro Bowl appearances
  • Five-time All-Pro

18. Devin Hester – Return Specialist, Wide Receiver – 2006-2013

  • Holds 21 franchise records along with multiple NFL records
  • Three Pro Bowl appearances
  • Four-time All-Pro
  • NFL 2000’s All-Decade Team
  • 264 punt returns, 3,241 yards, 13 touchdowns, 222 kick returns, 5,504 yards, five touchdowns, 217 receptions, 2,807 yards 14 touchdowns

17. Olin Kreutz – Center – 1998-2010

  • The second most starts in franchise history
  • Six Pro Bowl appearances
  • Two-time All-Pro
  • NFL 2000’s All-Decade Team

16. Steve McMichael – Defensive Tackle – 1981-1993

  • Two Pro Bowl appearances
  • Five-time All-Pro
  • 814 tackles, 92.5 sacks, 16 fumble recoveries, 12 forced fumbles, two interceptions, three safeties
Credit: Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

15. Doug Atkins – Defensive End – 1955-1966

  • 1963 NFL champion
  • Eight Pro Bowl appearances
  • 10-time All-Pro
  • NFL 1960’s All-Decade Team

14. Lance Briggs – Linebacker – 2003-2014

  • Seven Pro Bowl appearances
  • Three-time All-Pro
  • 1,173 tackles, 15 sacks, 16 interceptions, 19 forced fumbles, seven fumble recoveries, five defensive touchdowns

13. Bulldog Turner – Offensive Lineman, Linebacker – 1940-1952

  • Four-time NFL champion
  • Two Pro Bowl appearances
  • Eight-time First-Team All-Pro
  • 1942 NFL interceptions leader
  • NFL 1940’s All-Decade team
  • 17 career interceptions, five fumble recoveries, three defensive touchdowns

12. Charles Tillman – Cornerback – 2003-2014

  • Two Pro Bowl appearances
  • 2012 First-Team All-Pro
  • 856 tackles, 24 tackles for loss, 36 interceptions, 133 pass deflections, 42 forced fumbles, 11 fumble recoveries, three sacks, nine defensive touchdowns
  • 2013 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year
real Chicago Bears
Credit: Jeff Hanisch-US PRESSWIRE

11. Bill George – Linebacker – 1952-1965

  • 1963 NFL champion
  • Eight Pro Bowl appearances
  • Eight-time First-Team All-Pro
  • NFL 1950’s All-Decade Team
  • 18 career interceptions along with 19 fumble recoveries

10. Bronko Nagurski – Fullback – 1930-1937, 1943

  • Three-time NFL champion
  • Seven-time All-Pro
  • 1932 NFL rushing touchdowns leader
  • NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team
  • NFL 1930’s All-Decade Team

9. Dan Hampton – Defensive Tackle – 1979-1990

  • 1985 Super Bowl champ
  • Four Pro Bowl appearances
  • Six-time All-Pro
  • NFL 1980’s All-Decade Team
  • 57 sacks, 10 fumble recoveries, one safety

8. Richard Dent – Defensive End – 1983-1993, 1995

  • 1985 Super Bowl champ and MVP
  • Four Pro Bowl appearances
  • 1985 First-Team All-Pro
  • 1985 sacks leader
  • 641 tackles, 124.5 sacks, eight interceptions, 34 forced fumbles, 13 fumble recoveries, two defensive touchdowns

7. Brian Urlacher – Linebacker – 2000-2012

  • Eight Pro Bowl appearances
  • Five-time All-Pro
  • 2000 NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year
  • 2005 NFL Defensive Player of the Year
  • NFL 2000’s All-Decade Team
  • 1,354 tackles, 138 tackles for loss, 41.5 sacks, 22 interceptions, 11 forced fumbles, 15 fumble recoveries, 91 pass deflections, four defensive touchdowns
Real Chicago Bears
Credit: Andy Lyons

6. Mike Ditka – Tight End – 1961-1966

  • 1963 NFL champion
  • Five Pro Bowl appearances
  • Six-time All-Pro
  • 1961 NFL Rookie of the Year
  • First among Bears tight ends with 4,503 receiving yards, fifth in both receptions (316) and receiving touchdowns (34)

5. Sid Luckman – Quarterback – 1939-1950

  • Four-time NFL champion
  • Three-time NFL All-Star
  • Six-time All-Pro
  • 1943 NFL MVP
  • Led NFL in passing yards, passing touchdowns along with passer rating three times each
  • NFL 1940’s All-Decade Team

4. Mike Singletary – Linebacker – 1981-1992

  • 1985 Super Bowl champ
  • 10 Pro Bowl appearances
  • Nine-time All-Pro
  • Two-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year (1985, 1988)
  • NFL 1980’s All-Decade Team
  • 1,488 tackles, 19 sacks, seven interceptions, 12 fumble recoveries
Credit: Jonathan Daniel- Getty Images

3. Gale Sayers – Running Back – 1965-1971

  • Four Pro Bowl appearances
  • Five-time First-Team All-Pro
  • 1965 NFL Rookie of the Year
  • 1969 NFL Comeback Player of the Year
  • 1966, 1969 NFL rushing yards leader
  • NFL 1960’s All-Decade Team
  • NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team
  • 4,956 yards, 39 touchdowns rushing, 3,172 return yards with eight touchdowns

2. Dick Butkus – Linebacker – 1965-1973

  • Eight Pro Bowl appearances
  • Eight-time All-Pro
  • Two-time NFL Defensive Player of the Year (1969, 1970)
  • NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team
  • NFL 1960’s All-Decade Team and NFL 1970’s All-Decade Team
  • 22 interceptions, 27 fumble recoveries

1. Walter Payton – Running Back – 1975-1987

  • 1985 Super Bowl champ
  • Nine Pro Bowl appearances
  • Eight-time All-Pro
  • 1977 NFL MVP
  • 1977 NFL Offensive Player of the Year
  • Led NFL in rushing yards and touchdowns in 1977
  • NFL 1970’s All-Decade Team and NFL 1980’s All-Decade Team
  • NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team
  • 16,726 rushing yards, 110 touchdowns, 492 receptions, 4,538 yards, 15 touchdowns
  • Holds at least 31 franchise records
Chicago Bears Top-25
Credit: NFL

There you have it, the real Chicago Bears all-time top 25 list. Thanks to everyone who joined together in this effort to create the ultimate real Chicago Bears all-time list!

– David Creekmur covers College Football and College Women’s Sports for Full Press Coverage. Like and follow on Twitter

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