Unlike a sport like basketball where your favorite superstars can be seen on the hardwood wearing their own shoe, NFL players don't get the same treatment all that often. Instead, they are forced to settle for the same old sneakers worn by their countless other players in the league. Where's the originality? Pardon the poor Black Eyed Peas reference, but where's the love? With the start of the season just around the corner, we take a look at the guys who deserve some love in 25 NFL Players Who Deserve a Signature Training Shoe.
No. 25 - Ray Rice
Ray Rice is proof that great things come in small packages. At 5'8", Rice has proven time and time again that underestimating his effectiveness on the football field is a grave mistake. For the kids out there who feel as though they're playing amongst giants, what better player to look up to than the Ravens running back?
No. 24 - Larry Fitzgerald
Larry Fitzgerald may be with Nike, but unfortunately, the brand has yet to step up to the plate and give him his own signature trainer. Fitzgerald is a humble leader who still puts in the work on and off the field through his many charity efforts. What's not to like about Fitz?
No. 23 - J.J. Watt
Maybe it's the menacing looking arm brace or could it possibly be the way he can single-handledly dominate a game, either way, J.J. Watt is a force on the defensive end. On a team like the Texans who have their own offensive stars, like Arian Foster and Andre Johnson, Watt has gotten his fair share of the spotlight on the defensive end. And, as they say, defense wins championships.
No. 22 - Doug Martin
After only one season in the NFL, Doug Martin has turned himself into a feared back in the league despite his 5'9" frame and odd nickname, "Muscle Hamster. But, what can seemingly work against him could make him marketing gold for any brand that takes a chance on the now second-year pro.
No. 21 - Jimmy Graham
While playing football at the University of Miami, Jimmy Graham was also on the men's basketball team. Nowadays, Graham only plays in the NFL but his skill set reflects the very essence of a basketball player: tall, quick and athletic. And, with the amount of looks that the 26-year-old tight end receives when the Saints are in the red zone, you'll assuredly see his signature shoe quite often. Free advertising FTW!
No. 20 - DeMarcus Ware
Even though DeMarcus Ware is a towering, scary individual, the guy is a gentle giant. On the field, he's a leader who sets an example for his teammates on how to work hard and push yourself to the limits. Outside of football, he's a gentleman who treats everyone with the utmost respect. A truly surprising sight when you see what he does to the opposition every Sunday, no?
No. 19 - Patrick Willis
Simply put, Patrick Willis is a beast. Any person looking to become a linebacker in the future probably looks up to Willis and may even model their style of play after him. So why not also wear the same trainers as well?
No. 18 - A.J. Green
If you don't already, it's only a matter of time before everyone knows who A.J. Green is. In only two seasons, Green has managed to put up exceptional numbers and only seems to be getting better. In addition to his work on the field, A.J. is the consummate professional who plays the game right and sets a great example for the kids looking up to him.
No. 17 - Jamaal Charles
As a former track star in college, Jamaal Charles knows what to wear in order to get the most out of his footwear to maximize his performance on the field. A valuable tool when crafting the perfect shoe for any all-around competitive athlete.
No. 16 - Devin Hester
Any time Devin Hester trots out onto the field to receive a punt, it's must-see TV. You don't know what he'll do next or how he'll make his way onto SportsCenter's Top 10, but you know something special can happen whenever the punter gives him a chance to take it to the house.
No. 15 - DeSean Jackson
You don't see receivers quite like DeSean Jackson all that often. Despite his short 5'9" frame, Jackson has found his niche in the league by utilizing his speed to torch defenders. A very identifiable skill set among the youth considering their bodies haven't fully developed into adulthood. When speed is all you have, make like D-Jax and just beat your opponent on a streak route.
No. 14 - Russell Wilson
Before he made a splash in the NFL, people said Russell Wilson was too small or too much of a risk. One year later, he's proven all the doubters wrong. Similarly, Wilson speaks to those people that feel as though others don't respect their talent or game. His story so far is the perfect embodiment of the underdog tale and who doesn't like to root for the underdog?
No. 13 - Colin Kaepernick
Could Colin Kaepernick become Michael Vick, version 2.0? After only one full season in the NFL, it may be too early to tell but judging from what he's done so far, Kaepernick has proven to be the type of quarterback that could change the outcome of a game by himself. Which company wouldn't want a guy like him representing the brand?
No. 12 - Patrick Peterson
If you squint hard enough, you could see a little Deion Sanders in Patrick Peterson. Like Primetime, Peterson is a skilled cornerback and simply unpredictable when he goes out there to return a punt. Oh, and Deion had his own trainer during the prime of his career. Where's the love for Peterson?
No. 11 - Troy Polamalu
If his appearances in commercials for brands like Head & Shoulders have taught us anything, it's that Troy Polamalu and his hair are incredibly marketable. So, a transition from hawking your everyday household necessities to a signature shoe would be a cake walk for Polamalu. Plus, it doesn't hurt that the guy exhibits a unique, radical and very noticeable style of play unmatched by anyone else in the league.
No. 10 - Von Miller
Even though Von Miller has come under some trouble recently for violating league policy, there's no denying that the guy is entertaining and exceptionally talented. On a team which features the likes of Peyton Manning, Miller is still able to steal away some of the headlines with his ability to sniff out the quarterback and show off that great personality with a hilarious celebration right afterwards. We'd surely love to see him in some commercials in the near future.
No. 9 - Aaron Rodgers
Even though Aaron Rodgers wears Nikes on his feet, it doesn't mean that he's got his own signature trainer. It's actually kinda sad. Every Sunday, Rodgers takes the field for one of the most prestigious franchises in the NFL, at the most important position in the sport and still manages to succeed night in and night out. And, here's a bonus, he could name his signature shoe "The Discount Double Checks," eh? Yeah, yeah, kinda corny.
No. 8 - Richard Sherman
When you see Richard Sherman, you can't help but think of Deion Sanders for a variety of reasons. From the trash talking to the show boating to the ability to back it all up in the end, Sherman has the personality and skill to become a great, entertaining representative for whichever company that chooses to give him a shoe deal.
No. 7 - Dez Bryant
In April, Dez Bryant signed a three-year deal with Jordan. So, a signature shoe should be on the horizon, no? After all, he wears the number made famous by the great Michael Irvin and plays on America's Team. Dez can potentially turn into the cornerstone of the Cowboys franchise and the face of the Jordan brand in the NFL.
No. 6 - Rob Gronkowski
At only 24, Rob Gronkowski has turned into one of the most polarizing players in the NFL today. His play on the field has received as much attention as his shenanigans outside of the sport, but as they say, "all press is good press." As long as he can fully recover from his multiple surgeries, Gronk will remain in the spotlight and so will any company that decides give him his own signature shoe.
No. 5 - Clay Matthews
Even though he plays on the side of the ball that doesn't receive much attention, Clay Matthews has done pretty well for himself. Maybe it's because of his ball hawk style of play, his long blonde locks or his Nordic god-like looks, but whatever it is, Matthews will continue to shine on the gridiron while maintaining his incredible marketability for years to come.
No. 4 - Victor Cruz
No signature shoe for Victor Cruz? Jay Z, get on this ASAP! It's not a hard sell either since every time Cruz puts points on the board, he breaks out the salsa dance celebration which will give fans and sneakerheads alike a great look at what he's wearing on his feet.
No. 3 - Tom Brady
It may come as a shock, but even though Tom Brady rocks a cap that with his initials and UGGs off the field, he still doesn't have his own signature shoe. As one of the most successful and recognizable players in the league today, Brady would be a shoe-in (no pun intended) for having his own line. C'mon, can we please make this happen already?
No. 2 - Robert Griffin III
Despite the heartbreaking conclusion to rookie season which resulted in Robert Griffin III suffering a torn ACL and LCL, he proved to still be worth all the hype. So, why didn't adidas step up to the plate and give RGIII his own signature shoe. After all, Griffin has shown his allegiance towards supporting the Three Stripes by getting fined a hefty $10,000 for wearing non-Nike gear during warm-ups. For the time being, RGIII will represent the brand and rock the SpringBlade model with his custom socks but it's only a matter of time before there are customizations made to his footwear.
No. 1 - Adrian Peterson
After an impressive season where he rushed for 2,097 yards, it is shocking that Adrian Peterson hasn't scored himself a shoe deal yet. AP wore adidas for a majority of the year. It would probably be in the company's best interest to snag a player of Peterson's stature, so we're assuming it's only a matter of time before he gets his own signature line.