Let's put it simply: National Football League players are human just like us, and they have friends. When it comes to the players socializing off the field, the thought makes you wonder who hangs out with who.
A lot of the time in post-game interviews in the middle of the field, you can notice players shaking the hands of opposing team members or maybe chatting briefly. There are also plenty of superstar players that are friends with each other, retired or in the league.
Regardless of the competitive sport, players still have friends on different teams and hang out when their cleats are off. It isn’t uncommon for NFL players to be friends with one another, but who do the elite players in the league hang out with? Obviously, Eli and Peyton Manning are always at each other’s places being that they’re brothers and all.
For example, Richard Sherman, the Seattle Seahawks cornerback, is actually good friends with the Washington Redskins wide receiver, DeSean Jackson. They’ve been good friends since elementary school, according to Sherman during an interview he did with the NFL.
Here is a list of the NFL star players that are friends off the football field.
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16 Josh Gordon and Johnny Manziel
Although both are no longer active players in the NFL, Gordon and Manziel are surprisingly good friends, most likely because they did more partying than being serious about playing for the NFL.
Gordon was spotted alongside Manziel at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Indio, California. Gordon would have came back into the NFL for the 2016 season after his four game suspension. However, he put himself in a rehab facility for a substance abuse problem. Gordon, a very talented wide-receiver, has only played on the Browns for three seasons and is 25 years old.
Manziel is 23 years old, has been running into the law for the past couple years. He lost his motivation to play professional football and went down a dark path. He was released from the Browns in early 2016 and is also in rehab seeking help for his substance abuse problems.
15 T.Y. Hilton and Antonio Brown
Hilton and Brown both grew up in Gwen Cherry Park, right outside Miami, Florida. Brown lived about a mile away from Hilton’s house, but attended different schools. They both play wide-receiver and admire each other’s skills. Brown was drafted to the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2010, while Hilton was picked up by the Indianapolis Colts in 2012.
The two met for the first time in a decade when the Steelers versed the Colts during a preseason game in 2012. Since that game, they have been in touch. Brown and Hilton motivate each other to keep improving and are both proud to represent their community.
According to an ESPN interview, Hilton studies tapes of Brown running routes during games. He claims that Brown is the only wide-receiver he studies, because of the type of relationship they have.
14 Mike Wallace and Keenan Lewis
Not only are they best friends, they attended the same schools all the way through college. They were both even drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers in 2009.
Mike Wallace is a wide-receiver that played on the Steelers for four years, until he played he played for the Miami Dolphins for two seasons. Wallace has also played for the Minnesota Vikings for their 2015 season. He is currently playing for the Baltimore Ravens.
Keenan Lewis plays cornerback and also was on the Steelers for the same amount of time as Wallace, four seasons. After playing on the Steelers together, they decided to go their pursue their different team interests. In 2013, Lewis signed to the New Orleans Saints, where he stayed until 2015. He is now a free agent, after being cut from the Saints for being too injury prone.
13 Chris Baker and Terrance Knighton
They are childhood best friends that hang out almost daily, when they’re not on the football field. Knighton is a defensive-tackle, while Baker is a defensive-end. They played college ball at different universities, but finally were reunited for the 2015 Redskins season.
According to the Washington Post, their dads were high school pals and Knighton was the reason Baker ended up playing football. The odds of you and your childhood best friend on the same team is slim to none in the NFL. Knighton was also Baker’s best man at his wedding.
Knighton is currently an unsigned free agent, after playing eight seasons in the league. Baker is still on the Redskins, holding his own and making sure no one steals his spot on the field. This is Baker’s fifth season playing for the Redskins.
12 Trae Waynes and Melvin Gordon
They both played for the same football team at Bradford high school in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Wayne and Gordon got their professional football calling in 2015, when both got drafted into the NFL. Gordon, who plays running back was picked up by the San Diego Chargers in the first-round. The Minnesota Vikings in the first round picked up Wayne, who play as cornerback.
Wayne explained in an interview with the Chargers news team, that his and Gordon’s friendship really took off after they played football together in middle school. In September 2016 the two friends' teams faced each other. They didn’t cover each other at all, but to see your best friend on the field certainly must have been entertaining.
11 Marqise Lee and Robert Woods
Robert Woods and Marqise Lee went to Junipero Serra public high school together and played football there as well. The high school is located San Diego, California. They became good friends through playing football together and even attended the same college, the University of Southern California. They would motivate each other during games to do better and push themselves.
Lee and Woods are both wide-receivers, Woods is a bit more talented than Lee. However, that didn’t stop Lee from getting signed to the Jacksonville Jaguars in 2014, during the second-round of the NFL draft. Woods got scooped up in the second-round of the draft by the Buffalo Bills in the 2013 draft. Both of them play for the same teams that drafted them.
Woods has 2,708 yards and 12 touchdowns, that he has racked up over the four years he has been in Buffalo. Compared to Lee, who has 843 yards and two touchdowns, after being in the league for three years.
10 Dak Prescott and Ezekiel Elliott
Both are rookies in the NFL this year and are making a positive difference on the Dallas Cowboys together. The dynamic duo have proven to be successful pickups in the offseason by making the Cowboys first in the NFC East division. The noticeable improvement with Elliott and Prescott’s assistance could be because they are also inseparable best friends.
They always room together when the team has to stay overnight at a hotel for an away game. According to the Dallas Morning News, when they interviewed Alfred Morris the running-back for the Cowboys, he stated they practically do everything together.
Prescott and Elliott have made the Cowboys playoff contenders, without the help of Tony Romo. When Fox Sports asked Prescott about his and Ezekiel’s relationship, he described him as a “brother.”
9 Phillip Dorsett and Giovani Bernard
They played on the St. Thomas Aquinas high school football team in Fort Lauderdale and won the state championship one time. Dorsett was a skilled wide-receiver and Bernard was a talented running-back. Unfortunately, they were only lucky enough to go to the same high school.
Dorsett went to play on the Miami Hurricanes, the University of Miami’s football team. Bernard went on to suit up for North Carolina Tar Heels, the University of North Carolina’s football team. Dorsett got drafted by the Indianapolis Colts in 2015. Bernard was picked up by the Cincinnati Bengals in the second-round of the 2013 NFL draft.
Dorsett is currently on the Colts, with career stats of 478 yards and two touchdowns. While, Bernard is still on the Bengals for his fourth season. He has achieved 2,272 yards and 12 touchdowns over the course of his career.
8 Ted Ginn Jr. and Donte Whitner
They both attended Glenville high school in Cleveland, Ohio and also went to Ohio State. Donte Whitner is a defensive-back that was chosen in the 2006 NFL draft by the Buffalo Bills. Ted Ginn Jr. is a wide-receiver that was picked up in 2007 by the Miami Dolphins. They both played on the San Francisco 49ers together, during their 2011 and 2012 seasons.
Ted Ginn Jr. played on Miami for three season, until he went to the San Francisco 49ers for an additional three. In 2013, he played for the Carolina Panthers and then switched it up by playing for the Arizona Cardinals the next season. I suppose he didn’t like it, because he went back to the Panthers after that, to be one of Cam Newton’s weapons on the field.
Donte Whitner, a former Pro Bowl safety that played on the Bills for five years, then signed to the 49ers for three years. He went on to play for the Cleveland Browns for two years, from 2014 to 2015. Whitner currently plays for the Washington Redskins and hasn’t been doing too hot this 2016 season.
7 Osi Umenyiora and Demarcus Ware
They both attended Auburn high school in Auburn, Alabama and also went to Troy University together. Ware has mentioned, that Umenyiora helped him to get picked up by the Troy football team. Umenyiora was drafted by the New York Giants in 2003. Ware was selected by the Dallas Cowboys two years later. Thus, creating a friendly rivalry between the two friends when the met on the field.
Ware played on the Cowboys for nine seasons. He decided to switch to the Denver Broncos in 2014, where he currently plays.
Umenyiora was on the Giants for nine years, until he signed with the Atlanta Falcons in 2013. He played on the Falcons for their 2014 season and is now a unsigned free agent. Umenyiora has stated in a 2015 interview with New York Daily News, that he would like to retire a Giant.
5 Marshawn Lynch and Michael Robinson
Lynch and Robinson didn’t go to any of the same schools. They were destined to play on the Seattle Seahawks together and eventually became good friends. Robinson played full-back and played on the Seahawks from 2010 until 2013. He retired and became an analyst for the NFL network. Lynch retired in 2015 from the NFL after a very successful career on the Seahawks.
In retrospect, Robinson recalled that he had the cubicle next to Lynch in the locker room. They’re such good friends, Lynch gave Robinson an interview. Making it one of the only television interviews that Lynch has ever done.
When Robinson got involved with a medical situation that put him in the hospital, Lynch was the first one there. Lynch and Robinson got each other’s back and you know what they say, a good friend is hard to come by.
4 Dez Bryant and Johnny Manziel
Bryant and Manziel aren’t on the same football team or never attended the same school as one another. Yet, they are good friends and have been seen out together and enjoying each other’s company. Bryant, who is an elite wide-receiver for the Dallas Cowboys, was with Manziel at a pool party in 2014.
Bryant tweeted a picture of him and Manziel at the pool party on his Twitter account. Manziel can be seen doing Bryant's signature “X” arm gesture in the picture that he posted.. The Dallas Cowboys had No. 16 draft pick in the first-round of the 2014 NFL draft. They technically could have picked up Manziel, if they wanted him bad enough. The Brown’s used their No. 22 pick in the first-round of the draft, when they picked up Manziel.
3 Marcedes Lewis and Desean Jackson
Lewis and Jackson both played for the Polytechnic football team in Long Beach, California. Jackson was a freshman when he met Lewis on the team and they both showcased their talents on their field. They both went on to make a name for themselves in the NFL, as talented players in their respected positions.
Jackson was drafted in 2008 in the second-round by the Philadelphia Eagles. He is a wide-receiver that has accumulated over 8,000 yards during his nine year career. Jackson left the Eagles and signed with the Washington Redskins in 2014, he currently plays for them.
Lewis has been in the NFL for 11 seasons, playing for the Jacksonville Jaguars his entire career. He has over 4,000 yards and has 28 touchdowns that he contributed to the team, so far.
2 Ryan Fitzpatrick and Eric Decker
Fitzpatrick and Decker didn’t go to the same high school or college. However, they certainly are best friends off the field. Eric Decker posted an Instagram video in April 2016 of him hanging out with Fitzpatrick and other New York Jets teammates. They were bonding and watching a New York Rangers playoff game, all sporting Ranger attire.
The video surfaced when Fitzpatrick’s quarterback job was up for grabs and Brian Hoyer was trying to get it. Fitzpatrick was an unsigned free agent at his point and was just hanging out with former teammates on the Jets.
Fitzpatrick got drafted in 2005 by the St. Louis Rams. He is on his 12th season in the NFL and recently had his best season of his career on the Jets in 2005. He got 3,905 yards and 31 touchdowns.
Decker, who is 29 years old, is four years younger than Fitzpatrick. The age difference doesn’t seem to deter them from hanging out though. Fitzpatrick, Decker and the current Jets have a close-knit camaraderie, but aren’t doing too hot this 2016 season.
1 Ezekiel Elliott and Odell Beckham Jr.
Elliot and Beckham Jr. spent the past fourth of July together, hanging out and barbecuing like everyone else. Elliott posted a picture on Instagram of him and Beckham Jr. together. Although, there is a fierce Cowboys-Giants rivalry between the two teams. These two look past the competitive sport and are good friends regardless.
Elliot is a rookie in the NFL, he was drafted by the Dallas Cowboys in the first-round of the 2016 draft. He has been a positive addition to the team since his arrival. Elliot has 703 yards and five touchdowns, so far for his first season in the league.
Odell Beckham Jr. was drafted in the first-round by the New York Giants in 2014. He is a extremely talented wide-receiver. Beckham Jr. has already accumulated over 3,000 yards and has obtained 28 touchdowns over the three years he has been in the league.
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