The NFL talent that hails from Arizona is not quite as deep as the Grand Canyon, but the players who come from the Grand Canyon State can hold their own with some of the best in the game.
We know one thing for sure: Arizona is HOT. And the football players who grew up there can bring the heat. But who are the five-best NFL players from Arizona right now? Let’s take a gander.
Top 5 NFL Players From Arizona
5: Byron Murphy (CB, Arizona Cardinals – Scottsdale, AZ)
Currently tied for eighth in the league with four interceptions in 12 games, the Cardinals’ cornerback is on the rise in 2021. Byron Murphy turned one of his interceptions this season into a pick six when he ran it back 29 yards for a score in a 31-19 win over the Jaguars, earning him NFC Defensive Player of the week in Week 3.
Before being drafted by Arizona with the No. 33 pick in 2019, Murphy earned First Team All-Pac-12 honors in 2018 for his redshirt sophomore performance for the Washington Huskies. Murphy has a nose for the ball and has the potential to be a star.
4: Christian Kirk (WR, Arizona Cardinals, Scottsdale, AZ)
Named to the 2018 NFL All-Rookie team, Christian Kirk is still just getting warmed up as a professional receiver. The Cardinals’ pass-catcher who hails from nearby Scottsdale has snagged 62 receptions for 812 yards and five touchdowns so far this season. Kirk was a college superstar at Texas A&M and was named the SEC Freshman of the Year in 2015 while subsequently earning First Team All-SEC honors in 2016 and 2017.
With tons of talent and room left for improvement in consistency, Kirk is a player that all of the Grand Canyon State should be proud of and excited to watch for years to come.
3: Everson Griffen (DE, Minnesota Vikings – Avondale, AZ)
The 6-foot-3, 273-pound defensive end may be on the downslope of his football days, but at 33 years old, Everson Griffen might still have some left in the tank to continue an impressive NFL career.
Griffen recently stepped away from the field to deal with personal issues, but not before recording five sacks in nine games this season. Over his NFL tenure, Griffen has been named to the Pro Bowl four times and was named a Second Team All-Pro in 2017. With 85.5 sacks and 10 forced fumbles over his career, Griffen is a force to be reckoned with off the edge.
2: Mark Andrews (TE, Baltimore Ravens – Scottsdale, AZ)
Selected No. 86 overall in the third round of the 2018 NFL Draft by the Baltimore Ravens, Mark Andrews has developed into an outstanding receiving tight end. The Scottsdale native currently ranks second among tight ends in receiving yards this season with 85 receptions, 1,062 yards, and eight touchdowns. Only Travis Kelce has been a more productive tight end in 2021, and that is some talented company.
Andrews was recently rewarded for his playing prowess with a handsome four-year, $56 million contract extension including $37.6 million guaranteed. The 2019 Pro Bowler can flat out play, and he has many good years ahead of him in a league where tight ends are increasingly valuable.
1: Cameron Jordan (DE, New Orleans Saints – Chandler, AZ)
The New Orleans Saints’ defensive end extraordinaire has had an amazing 11 years in the league. For his career, the 6-foot-4, 287-pounder from Chandler has 557 tackles and 100.5 sacks to go along with 13 forced fumbles. Cameron Jordan is simply a beast against the pass and run, and he has spent his entire time in the NFL representing Who Dat Nation, where he has garnered six Pro Bowl awards and two First Team All-Pro awards. To top it off, Jordan was named to the NFL’s All-Decade Team for the 2010s.
Jordan showed just how good he is against Tom Brady and the Bucs last week by sacking Brady twice and forcing the GOAT to fumble in the Saints’ improbable victory.