10. Ken Norton Sr & Jr- The father was the heavyweight champion of the world and beat Ali in 1973. Ken Jr. is the only player to ever win 3 Super Bowls in a row as a linebacker for the Cowboys (XXVII-XXVIII) and 49ers (XXIX).
9. Jackie & Matthew Slater- Sentimental choice, but Jackie Slater is a hall of famer and Matthew has a chance to do the same. The Senior Slater played 20-years for the Rams and retired having set the record for most games played in the NFL. Matthew has been the emotional leader of the New England Patriots since 2008 and won 3 Super Bowl rings. Matthew could be the first predominant special teams player to be inducted into Canton.
8. Howie Long + Chris & Kyle- Dad is one of the most dominant defensive ends of an era that was flush with them: 8-pro bowls, 5-time all-pro, won Super Bowl XVIII with the Raiders and went into the Hall of Fame in 2000. Howie Long was the NFL’s defensive player of the year in 1985. 1985, as in “The ’85 Bears: The Greatest Defense of All-Time. His sons? Well Chris was drafted #2 overall in the 2008 Draft out of Virginia and went on to an 11-year career where he won two Super Bowls (Patriots and Eagles). Kyle retired this spring after a 7-year career with the Bears where he was one of the best guards in the game.
7. Ric & Charlotte Flair- The Nature Boy Ric Flair, 16-times your world heavyweight champion, from a time where that really meant something. Slick Ric traveled the world as the greatest wrestler of not only his generation but of all-time. His daughter Charlotte, a former collegiate volleyball player has taken to the squared circle like a duck to water. Some already consider Charlotte the greatest women’s wrestler of all-time, she debuted 7-years ago and is just 34. There is a chance that father and daughter are both considered the greatest ever when all is said and done.
6. Calvin & Grant Hill- Dad won the NFL’s rookie of the year in 1969, the Super Bowl VI with the Landry Cowboys and went to freakin Yale! Grant filled a lot of papa’s shoes, winning the NBA’s rookie of the year in 1995, didn’t win an NBA title, but did capture two national titles at Duke. Probably the best father & son cross-sport combo.
5. Steve & Bill Belichick- Steve coached and scouted college football for 40-years. Bill has coached in the NFL since 1975 and won 8 Super Bowls, 6 as a head coach of the New England Patriots where he has spent the past 21 years. David Halberstam, the greatest writer of sports books EVER, chose this relationship to write his seminal work Education of a Coach on the relationship between Steve and Bill. The legacy continues as Bill’s two sons Stephen and William are on the Patriots’ staff.
4. Dale Earnhardt Sr & Jr- Dale Earnhardt is the greatest race car driver who ever lived. The Intimidator won 76 races, 7-championships (tied for the most all-time) and his black Good Wrench #3 car might be the most iconic ride ever to turn left. (It’s either that or Richard Petty’s blue/orange STP #43 car.) Dale Jr. had an impossible helmet to fill, especially after Sr. tragically passed on the track in Daytona. But Jr. went on to a career that saw him hit the winner’s circle 26 times, including twice at Daytona. There have been a lot of great father/son combos in auto racing but the Earnhardt’s are in a class by themselves.
3. Bobby & Brett Hull- Papa is the Golden Jet. Leagues would start in the 1970’s and actually think they could survive if one team could just lure in Bobby Hull. One of the fastest players in the league also featured one of the hardest shots of his generation. His son Brett? Well he only hoisted the cup twice, scored the 4th most goals in NHL history and is one of 4 players to ever score 50 goals in 50 games. Often overshadowed playing in the age of Gretzky, Brett Hull is one of the most underrated players in NHL history.
2. Archie Manning, Peyton & Eli- Archie has become better in retirement than he may have been as a player, but it’s undeniable that he played on some horrible teams during horrible times. The sons, whatever, they each won two Super Bowls. Peyton is a no doubt, first ballot, all-time, pantheon caliber quarterback. Eli might get in? Archie might get in some year? So help me god if Archie gets in the same year as either one of them? That’d be a little too much.
Ken Griffey Sr & Jr- The Griffey’s top the list, not just for their individual accomplishments but for what they did together. Kens Sr & Jr played in the same outfield, hit back to back home runs and son even stole a pop fly from his dad’s grasp. “Junior” was the best baseball player of the 1990’s and one of the tops of his generation with over 600 career homers. And dad? He was only a piece of the Big Red Machine. When I asked my own dad who the best father & son combo was, he named the Griffey’s immediately.