In team sports, there are always the players who get all the attention and those who are routinely ignored. In hockey, the flashy goal scorer will always overshadow the scrappy, tough defenseman whose contributions include blocked shots and solid positional play. To continue this idea, the defenders and midfielders in soccer (football, whatever) are often forgotten in favor of the strikers. This is obviously not universal to all athletes, and there are beloved superstars at all positions, but in football the linemen are overlooked.
The players with the flashiest plays and those who put down the stats are inevitably the favorites of the vast majority of fans. Obviously a defensive end who puts up good sack numbers every year is a fan favorite, but beyond that, there is little mention of the big guys. Looking at the top 20 selling NFL jerseys (right now), they are nearly all offensive players, along with Von Miller, Khalil Mack and J.J. Watt. Of these guys, one and a half are linemen (Khalil Mack being the half because he was frequently lining up as linebacker in 2015). No offensive linemen and no interior defensive linemen.
With that in mind, while most people obsessed with athletes' girlfriends and wives focus on Tom Brady's supermodel wife and Aaron Rodgers' actress (Gisele Bundchen and Olivia Munn respectively) we often forget that linemen also have hot WAGs, worthy of ogling. Here are twenty of the hottest linemen WAGs out there.
20 Nya Lee - Terrance Knighton
New England Patriots defensive tackle Terrance Knighton starts out our list having dated semi-famous model, stripper and artist Nya Lee. Knighton himself was a fairly solid defensive tackle with the Broncos, but at 6'3" and over 360 lbs, he's been in the news for his weight more than what he brings to the Pats' defense this year. He had a lackluster season with the Washington Redskins in 2015 and missed being a part of a Denver Broncos team that won the Super Bowl. Tough luck, big fella.
The two split up sometime in late 2014 and it is unclear for how long they were together. With well over 400,000 Instagram followers, Lee is somewhat of a celebrity with or without an NFL boyfriend. She pulls off the shaved head look pretty well and if you're into girls with that look and a heck of a figure, she's one to check out on Instagram.
19 Erin Marzouki - Mario Williams
For a couple of years with the Houston Texans and later with the Buffalo Bills, Mario Williams was one of the most feared pass rushers in the league. His numbers dropped off significantly in 2015 (down from 42 total tackles and 14.5 sacks to 19 and 5 respectively) but he was quickly snatched up by the Miami Dolphins back in March. 2015 was his least productive season since 2011, when he played just five games and sustained a chest injury which ended his season. He recorded five sacks and 19 total tackles in 15 games during the 2015 campaign.
His ex-fiancee Erin Marzouki, used to work in the Houston Texans sales department but has moved on from football and now works in investments. They had a fairly public break up that back in 2013, and it got even more heated when Williams wanted the ring back; a ring that cost over $700,000.
18 Melissa Whitworth - Andrew Whitworth
A beastly left tackle, Andrew Whitworth has been a steady, reliable worker for the Cincinnati Bengals for ten seasons, with one First Team All-Pro selection and two Pro Bowl appearances. The big 2006 second round pick is now 34, and with his All-Pro year being in 2015, there will come a day when he slows down but it doesn't look like that will be any time soon. He's one of a few guys on this list who show that despite being massive, dealing with constant injuries and pain, and getting up there in years, age is just a number for elite NFL offensive linemen.
He and his wife Melissa have four kids together and despite being in their mid-thirties, she's a former Miss Louisiana (maiden name Melissa Clark) and has aged brilliantly. The couple are both active in philanthropy, working with Andrew's BigWhit77 Foundation, which works with underprivileged youths in Louisiana and Ohio.
17 Lexi Placourakis - Tyron Smith
At 6'5" and over 300 lbs, Tyron Smith is a plus-size person. Smith has only missed one regular season game in his five years with the Dallas Cowboys and has three Pro Bowl appearances along with a matching trio of All-Pro designations.
The Cowboys offensive tackle and this incredible looking lady, Lexi Placourakis, had split up, but in the past couple of years he has become more active in his kid's life. His attempt to have an impact on his son's life may have something to do with the fact that his upbringing was eventful, to say the least, and that his own family life as an adult has been somewhat stressful, as he and his parents were involved in some financial problems shortly after his start in the NFL.
16 Kaylee Frederick - Travis Frederick
From one Cowboy to another, we just saw Tyron Smith's stunning ex, now we'll see the Cowboys' Pro Bowl/All-Pro center's gorgeous wife. Drafted in 2013, he has the reputation for being one of the smartest linemen on the field (with offensive linemen already being considered some of the sharpest minds on the field). A regular starter for the last three years, the 31st pick in the 2013 Draft has yet to miss a regular season game. Given the amount of punishment any center, especially one who plays like Frederick, takes, it is impressive that he hasn't taken any time off. His youth, durability and obvious skill will make him a potential asset to this team for a long time.
Back in March 2014, Kaylee and Travis married, after meeting in Wisconsin a couple of years earlier while he was still playing for the Badgers.
15 Leslie Wood - Eric Wood
Eric Wood, center for the Buffalo Bills, is our number fifteen. He looks like the kind of guy who would walk around a frat house with a keg on his shoulder at 10:30 in the morning, but the 2015 Pro Bowl selection has been all business on the field since 2009 and has been honored as the Bills Man of the Year in 2015. Wood has been a known contributor to the charitable side of the Bills organisation for the last few years, having founded the Eric Wood Foundation, which works to positively impact the lives of sick, impoverished and/or disabled children throughout the Buffalo area.
A center in college, the Bills tried him at guard in his first two years before he earned the full time starting center job. Since then he's been getting better every season. Wood married his hot, blonde girlfriend Leslie back in 2012 in Louisville, where they both went to college.
14 Natalie Nelson - Ryan Kalil
Former USC Trojan and rock-solid center for the Panthers since 2008 (his 2007 season saw little in the way of field time), Ryan Kalil is one of the game's best and, in 2011, his massive contract made him the highest paid center in NFL history. The record was broken by Maurkice Pouncey (Steelers) in 2014 and more recently that record was broken by Alex Mack of the Falcons. He received accolades for his blocking in 2015 and was selected to the Pro Bowl, but played in the Super Bowl instead, as some people prefer that. He's thirty now, but given his nearly flawless play in 2015, the Panthers re-signed him to a new two year deal earlier this month. Given his intelligence and conditioning, we could see another five years out of Kalil.
Natalie and Ryan met at USC when he was on the football team and she was one of the cheerleaders. Like a few of the other ladies in their thirties on our list, she is still looking outstanding these days.
13 Pele Partsch - Michael Bennett
The Seahawks' Pro Bowl (2015) defensive end has been a great NFL story so far, after being overlooked in the 2009 draft because of some concerns over durability and reliability that arose after his senior year at Texas A&M. He was originally drafted by the Seahawks, cut in 2009 and spent three years with the Buccaneers, before returning to Seattle in 2013. Since then he has averaged 8.5 sacks per year and won a Super Bowl in 2014. His 2015 Pro Bowl season saw him increase his overall tackling number over previous seasons, along with a personal best in sacks (10) and two forced fumbles. 2016 will be an interesting year for Bennett and the Seahawks as they look to return to greatness, minus Beast Mode in the offensive backfield.
Bennett and his wife Pele got married in Hawaii back in 2012, but had been together for several years before that. She's of Hawaiian ancestry, but grew up in Houston. They have three kids together.
12 Madison Yates - Richie Incognito vvv
He's widely considered a dirty player and probably the most notorious "bully" in the NFL, but he was also one of the best guards in the league throughout 2015. While it is unclear whether Incognito currently has a girlfriend, he dated a stunning babe named Madison Yates back in 2013. She worked as a waitress in the Fort Lauderdale and they dated for two years. In the wake of his "bullying" accusations, when reached for her comment on his character, she said that he "was nothing but kind to me and is a great friend." Pretty strong praise from someone with whom it did not work out. How many exes can actually say that about their former lovers?
Who knows though, maybe she just has a thing for bad boys and doesn't know what a nice guy is. Either way, Incognito is a hell of a football player and he was with a great looking woman at one point. It is unknown whether Incognito is dating anyone these days.
11 Jennifer Richmond - Nick Mangold
When it comes to elite centers in the league, look no further than the New York Jets' Nick Mangold. The guy is about as complete a blocker as one can find in the league. The former Ohio State beast has been a Pro Bowl regular since 2006 and if there is one problem with his career, it's that the closest he's ever come to a Super Bowl with the damn Jets has been back to back conference championship losses. At one point, back in 2010, Mangold was the highest paid center in the league. He's still a powerhouse center at age 32 and has one year left on his contract. Given that he has only missed four games in ten seasons and still moves like a younger man, we could see him play for several more years.
His wife Jennifer however, is a gorgeous blonde who looks like she's a fraction of his size (always fun). They have been together since high school and got married in 2007, after Mangold's breakout rookie year.
10 Tiffany Brandt - Everson Griffen
The Minnesota Vikings' defensive end, who made his first trip to the Pro Bowl after his 2015 season, in which he tallied up 44 total tackles, 10.5 sacks, along with a forced fumble and four passes defended. Drafted back in 2010 from USC after a great college career and an unreal performance at the scouting combine, he played backup for the first four years of his career, and it all paid off with a great 2014 and 2015, in which he made 56 and 44 tackles and 12 and 10.5 sacks respectively. He is still young and plays a major part in a very respectable Vikings defense. He has two years left on his contract. While he played hurt with a shoulder injury through part of 2015, all sources are reporting that he is ready for whatever the upcoming season brings.
To say 2014 treated him well would be an understatement, as he married his gorgeous wife Tiffany in that year. They have a couple of kids and work together on charitable initiatives, including "Go Big Not Hungry" which feeds kids in need.
9 Katelynn Mathis - Evan Mathis
Despite a slow start to his career, Evan Mathis has become better with age, finally earning a steady starting spot with the Philadelphia Eagles at age 30. He started out in 2005 with the Carolina Panthers, and spent time as a backup with the Dolphins and then Bengals before finding success with the Eagles. Since then he's earned two trips to the Pro Bowl, an All-Pro season (2013) and of course a Super Bowl win with the Broncos earlier this year. More recently, he signed for a year with the Arizona Cardinals.
He's heading toward age 35, but he's also one of the fittest guards in the league, so a couple more years is not out of the question. Age is just a number for Mathis, who was named Pro Football Focus' best rush blocking guard int he league for 2015.
Back in 2012, he married long time girlfriend Katelynn, who is a physical trainer and fitness buff. They have a kid together and also a couple of dogs.
8 Rocio Sebhatu - Calais Campbell
For number eight, we'll stick with the Arizona Cardinals and look at their defensive line. Defensive end Calais Campbell is another solid producer who has been steady since 2009. The former Miami Hurricane was taken in the second round of the 2008 draft and has gone to the Pro Bowl in each of the last two years. He's one of those unbelievable athletes and has been competitive in just about every sport he tried since his youth. His agility and quickness (for a 6'8" guy who weighs just short of 290 lbs) are on display every Sunday for the Cardinals. He is coming into a contract year in 2016.
His girlfriend Rocio Sebhatu has been by his side since before his NFL days. They met in college and work on charitable initiatives together when Campbell isn't on the field wrangling ball carriers. As you can plainly see, she has a great smile and gorgeous eyes; Campbell is a lucky guy.
7 Carrie Dew (Staley) - Joe Staley
It's hard to say many good things about the San Francisco 49ers these days, but I'll try. The team has completed a magnificent nose dive into the bottom of the NFC West over the past four years. It's been a picture-perfect nose-dive, the kind of fast, elegant dive that would have Olympic judges holding up little signs with "10" on them.
But enough about the team and their problems, as they still have a great left tackle. See? I said I would say something nice about the team and I did. Joe Staley has been a very consistent part of a team that has seen a ton of up and down since 2007. Staley is five for five in terms of Pro Bowl selections for the last five seasons. They love the guy so much in San Fran that they've extended his contract twice. They have him until 2019, if he holds up (he probabaly will).
His wife Carrie is a stunning woman and a gifted athlete herself. She's a defender for the Sky Blue FC women's soccer team and played for Notre Dame in college.
6 Amy Johnson - Jared Allen
He retired a few months ago, and while the NFL is slightly less exciting because of it, Jared Allen has earned it. 136 sacks (which has him tied for ninth all time), five Pro Bowls, four All-Pro seasons and two league sack titles more than earn a man his retirement. Allen also tallied up 22 sacks back in 2011, tying him for second all time for sacks in a season, behind Michael Strahan, and ted with Justin Houston and Mark Gastineau. He was an absolute machine from 2004 until 2013 but got misused by the Chicago Bears in 2014, before ending his career with a season split between that team and the Carolina Panthers.
If you don't love the guy yet, he's also known as one of the good guys of the league and spent a ton of downtime serving his community. He's been involved with Wounded Warriors, animal shelters and a couple of medical research initiatives.
He and his wife Amy got married back in 2010 and have had two kids, but she still looks unreal.
5 Abbie Mumpower - Bryan Bulaga
Despite some significant durability issues, Bryan Bulaga is an important part of a Green Bay Packers offensive line that needs to block for one of the best quarterbacks in the game. He played on the 2010/11 Super Bowl winning team but spent time in 2012 and 2013 injured. When he's healthy, he's incredibly effective at keeping Aaron Rodgers on his feet, but he was plagued by injuries in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Nonetheless, heading into the 2016 season, the 2010 first rounder out of Iowa looks like he will be working, with a top ten offensive line, maybe a top five, that all remains to be seen.
Along with having made a good name for himself with the Packers, he has a great looking blonde wife. He and Abbie met at the University of Iowa, where Abbie was on the track and field team. They got married during the offseason last year in Milwaukee.
4 Nicole Williams - Larry English
I'll save you a trip to Wikipedia, because if you're not a Chargers fan, a Bucs fan, or a 2009 NFL draft buff, you probably don't recognize this name. Larry English was taken in the first round of the 2009 draft by the Chargers. He played outside linebacker for Illinois, but switched to defensive end in the NFL. He started two games in his rookie year, but since then he's done next to nothing in the league. In six years of NFL football, he has less than 100 tackles and a dozen sacks. He's had a better professional career than...well...me, but for a first round draft pick, English is a draft bust.
He's probably best known for his wife Nicole, who may well be the more famous of the two. She was featured on the terrible reality show WAGS. She's a model and definitely one of the hottest women to ever shack up with a lineman. If you like striking dark eyes and a nearly perfect body, this would be one lineman WAG to check out.
3 Larissa Johnson - Austin Howard
Like a few of the names on this list, a solid NFL career didn't seem likely for Austin Howard at first. The tackle was signed as an undrafted free agent by the Eagles back in 2010, got cut, signed with the Ravens practice squad in 2011, got a starting job with the Jets (which lasted two years) and then signed a five year contract with the Raiders. After a strong 2014 season and good performance through most of 2015, he suffered a season ending knee injury in December 2015. Given the fact that his status has been unclear for months, Jack Del Rio has made it clear that he wants Howard on his offensive line, but that the knee issue opens the door to a competition.
He probably doesn't mind the time off that he's had too much, seeing as he married the stunning Larissa Johnson back in 2014. I mean, most guys would take more time off work if they came home to that, let's be honest.
2 Leila Lopes - Osi Umenyiora
Another retired player, Nigerian-English-American defensive end Osi Umenyiora's wife is just too hot not to include. He played on two New York Giants Super Bowl winning teams, was selected to a couple of Pro Bowls and received All-Pro honors in 2005. He played a total of eleven seasons in the NFL, totaling over 430 tackles and 85 sacks. Add those two rings to the resume and that's a career that most players can only dream of. Interestingly, he is one of just three British-born NFL players who have won a Super Bowl.
If the career doesn't impress you however, the wife probably will. If you follow beauty pageants you may know the name, but for the rest of you, Leila Lopes was named Miss Universe in 2011. She and Umenyiora were married in her native Angola back in 2015. They met a few years before that and Umenyiora popped the question in 2013. Lopes is thirty now but look at her, can you tell?
1 Claudia Sampedro - Julius Peppers
While the Packers have used Julius Peppers as a linebacker and defensive end interchangeably, he spent most of his career at defensive end, and had his best years at that position with the Panthers. Julius Peppers is, of course, one of the greatest defensive ends of the past few decades. He's 36 now and doesn't look like retirement is on his radar yet, having been named to the Pro Bowl in 2015. His 136 career sacks put him in a tie with Jared Allen at ninth in all time sacks. If he gets five and a half this year, he will be tied with Michael Strahan for fifth.
But enough about Peppers on the field, as you guys are reading this to see what kind of lady he found off the field. He had a girlfriend for a long time, Lia Ames, but apparently he left her (while she was pregnant) to date Claudia Sampedro. She's an Instagram model who is famous for having a body similar to Kim Kardashian. Sources have suggested that he is paying around $8,000 per month in child support, but seeing what he's gotten himself into now, it may just be worth it.