Top 10 No. 1 overall picks in NFL Draft history

These top prospects lived up to the hype, and then some.
New York Giants v Indianapolis Colts
New York Giants v Indianapolis Colts / Andy Lyons/GettyImages
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2. Bruce Smith, Buffalo Bills (1985)

When you draft a defensive end No. 1 overall and he sets the all-time record for sacks in a career with 200, that's a fairly smart choice. Smith parlayed a strong career at Virginia Tech into a 19-year NFL stint with two Defensive Player of the Year wins, 11 Pro Bowl nods, and four Super Bowl appearances.

Smith finished his career with an insane eight First-Team All-Pro selections, tied with Lawrence Taylor and Reggie White, Bill George, and Aaron Donald for the most ever by a defensive player. With 13 double-digit sack seasons to his name, Smith was the picture of consistency and dominance on defense in the 1990s.

Peyton Manning is the greatest No. 1 pick in NFL Draft history

1. Peyton Manning, Indianapolis Colts (1998)

It was the age-old draft conundrum. Should the Colts draft the finished product in Tennessee's Manning, or go for the upside of Washington State's Ryan Leaf? Manning won out, and his final tally of numbers is so mind-boggling that there is an argument to be made he is the greatest quarterback or individual player in the history of the NFL.

14 Pro Bowls. Seven First-Team All-Pro selections. A record five MVP wins. 71,940 and 539 touchdown passes, both of which were all-time records when he retired. Two Super Bowl championships, one with Indianapolis and one in Denver. Even among the pantheon of elites in the NFL, Manning is in a tier occupied by an extremely select few.