No. 5: Eric Metcalf
For those who may not remember Eric Metcalf, he was as dynamic as any return man in the league today. He was a player who was ahead of his time in many ways.
The son of another great player, Terry Metcalf, Eric put together a terrific 14-year playing career with seven different teams. What was so special about Metcalf, aside from his returning ability, was that he could be equally effective as both a running back and wide receiver.
When he began his career with the Cleveland Browns after being made the No. 13 overall pick of the 1989 draft, he was a running back. Later in his career with the Atlanta Falcons, he was a wide receiver.
Metcalf would spend just one year with the Chargers, but he made it count. It was 1997 and the Chargers suffered through a 4-12 campaign. But Metcalf was a star for the team, catching 40 passes for 576 yards and two touchdowns. He also returned three punts for a touchdown that season, putting him in a tie for the second-most ever in a season.
His 10 career punt returns for touchdowns ranks second in league history, behind only Devin Hester. But his other numbers stand up as well.
All told, Metcalf had 17,230 all-purpose yards while finding the end zone 55 times during his career. He likely won’t ever reach the Hall of Fame, but he should be remembered as one of the league’s best do-it-all players.