clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Which NFL player would you clone to play every position?

Just imagine a football field with 22 Khalil Macks.

Versatility is a good skill to have in football, but it’s a sport of specialization. Von Miller doesn’t have to throw passes, Tom Brady doesn’t have to rush opposing passers, and Odell Beckham Jr. doesn’t have to kick field goals — although, he probably could.

But if one player had to do it all? Who in the NFL would you trust to pass, rush, catch, tackle, defend AND kick?

Let’s imagine a world where we could clone any player to fill a roster and ask them to play every position.

Picking a diverse athlete like Beckham could give you speed and skill at every position that touches the ball, but things definitely aren’t going to look too good in the trenches. It’s hard to imagine an offensive line of 5’11, 198-pound Beckhams could protect at all, and it’s even harder to imagine the Beckham squad could stop the run.

But picking a team of Vince Wilforks to maul everyone in the run game would leave a secondary that’s incredibly easy to pick apart.

The key is to find a balance between size and athleticism. Here’s who we think would make the best clone team:

Cam Newton: We haven’t seen a quarterback with Newton’s physical gifts in a long time. At 6’6, 260 pounds, with a physical running style and blazing open-field speed, Newton creates mismatches just by lining up under center. He’s also tough as nails, only missing three games in a six-year career. Newton’s raw athleticism makes him a natural fit all over the field.

Rob Gronkowski: Standing at 6’6, 265 pounds, Gronkowski looks like a starting defensive end, but runs routes like a seasoned receiver. He has the speed and athleticism to outrun and maneuver past linebackers and the strength to overpower defense backs. His tantalizing skill set is almost unfair.

Kam Chancellor: “Bam Bam Kam” is a different type of beast. He’s a safety, but is just as big as many NFL linebackers. He moves with the swiftness of a safety with a smaller stature, but brings a punch as great as any player in the NFL.

How many guys, regardless of position, do you know that could make a play like this? I’ll take that at every position, and like my odds.

Von Miller: Few people move as scarily as the 250-pound Miller does. His ability to make quick cuts and overpower blockers has made him an elite pass rusher, but it would also make him a dynamic short-yardage back or field-stretching tight end. We already know he has the nimble feet to finish eighth on Dancing With the Stars; surely he can apply those moves to the offensive side of the ball.

J.J. Watt: Three Defensive Player of the Year awards in four years. An unstoppable beast along the defensive line. 76 sacks in just six seasons. Watt can do it all on defense, and he also has a knack for making plays on offense, catching three touchdown passes in 2014. This is kind of an easy choice when you think about it.


Julio Jones: Julio Jones is a freak athlete. His speed for a man with a 6’3, 220-pound frame is remarkable, and he’s a receiver who doesn’t shy away from contact. Anyone who can do this should be able to handle about anything on a football field.

Khalil Mack: The reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year, Mack uses his unique blend of speed and power to fill several roles for the Raiders. He can harass quarterbacks from the second level or in the trenches, using his 6’3, 250-pound frame to raze offensive linemen and wreak havoc. That strength would give him the base to handle lineman duties on either side of the ball, but his speed and lateral movement give him the ability to be a pile-driving tailback or mismatch-creating tight end as well.

Eli Manning: He’s already a clone, so why not?

From Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt

Dontari Poe: Poe is easily the biggest guy on this list, but he’s remarkably fast and agile for his size. We know what he can do on defense, and he might have some challenges keeping up with faster receivers in coverage. But he can handle the offensive side of the ball. After all, no other 346-pounder has a touchdown pass, rush, and catch to his name.

Obi Melifonwu: Melifonwu, a rookie safety with the Raiders, absolutely lit up the combine with one of the event’s most explosive performances. At 6’4 with 4.4-second 40 speed and a 44-inch vertical leap, he could fill any skill position role on offense and fit anywhere from linebacker up on defense. His first year in the league will be predicated on proving he can translate his freak athleticism to Oakland’s secondary.

Le’Veon Bell: Bell has the perfect body type for a running back, measuring 6’1, 225 pounds and running a 4.60 40 time. He not only has deceptive speed for his size, but his vision and patience is one of the best in the league. The willingness to sit back and wait for an opportunity, then destroy opposing defenses on that chance, makes Bell stand out from the rest of the pack. It’s a skill set that should serve him well in other positions.