NFL all-decade: Best player on each AFC East team, every position

The start of a new decade is upon us with the 2020 NFL season. But before we get rolling with the '20s, ESPN is taking a look back at the best -- and worst -- of the 2010s and naming the top players of the decade for all 32 teams.

From the social media star of the decade to the worst call by a referee, ESPN's NFL team remembers the people and moments of impact -- good and bad -- from the past 10 years. NFL Nation reporters select the two best players of the decade from their teams, the top coach and they also assemble all-division teams of the 2010s.


It all kicked off Monday with the best and worst of the NFL from the past decade.

Division all-decade player, teams

Tuesday: AFC East and NFC East

Wednesday: AFC North and NFC North

Thursday: AFC West and NFC West

Friday: AFC South and NFC South



AFC East players of the decade





Buffalo Bills



Kyle Williams, DT


Years with team: 2006-18

A six-time Pro Bowler (all from 2010-18), Williams was a standout during a decade of overall mediocrity in Buffalo. He might not be a household name outside of Buffalo, but he ranked seventh among all defensive tackles in tackles for loss and sacks during that time frame. In Buffalo, calling him a fan favorite doesn't quite do him justice; he's so revered, he officiated a wedding for two Bills fans at halftime of their home game against the Patriots last season.

Honorable mention: LeSean McCoy, RB, 2015-18. "Shady" spent only four seasons with the Bills, but ranked third in the NFL in rushing yards during that span, behind Todd Gurley II and Ezekiel Elliott. The Bills' leading rusher for the decade, McCoy was the team's biggest offensive threat, its seventh-leading receiver and one of its three offensive skill players to make a Pro Bowl (he was named to three). His final season might have been disappointing, but McCoy was one of the better running backs in the league in three of his four seasons in Buffalo. -- Marcel Louis-Jacques



Miami Dolphins



Cameron Wake, DE


Years with team: 2009-18

Wake is the perfect representative because he was nationally underrated, but his consistent, impactful and emotional play made him a fan favorite. Wake totaled 92.5 sacks, 204 QB hits, 21 forced fumbles and five Pro Bowls over 10 seasons in Miami. Wake, who went undrafted out of Penn State in 2005, is one of the best free-agent finds in NFL history. The Dolphins signed him in 2009 after he won the CFL's most outstanding defensive player award in 2007 and 2008, and he went on to establish himself one of the best pass-rushers of the decade.

Honorable mention: Reshad Jones, S, 2010-19. There are several worthy options here, including receiver Jarvis Landry and center Mike Pouncey, but the right choice is Jones, who -- along with Wake -- represented the heart and soul of the Dolphins in the 2010s. At his peak, Jones was one of the NFL's best safeties and a two-time Pro Bowler. -- Cameron Wolfe



New England Patriots



Tom Brady, QB



Years with team: 2000-19

ESPN.com's choice as the player of the decade, Brady's accomplishments are well documented. But what many teammates say stands out most is how he's the ultimate team player as a selfless teammate and leader.

Honorable mention: Rob Gronkowski, TE, 2010-18. There is no shortage of candidates -- Devin McCourty, Stephon Gilmore, Dont'a Hightower, Julian Edelman among them -- but a player who might be the greatest of all time at his position is hard to overlook. He's a natural pairing with Brady, as the two developed a legendary connection that now writes its final chapter in Tampa Bay. -- Mike Reiss



New York Jets



Darrelle Revis, CB


Years with team: Jets, 2007-12, 2015-16; Patriots, 2014

Revis played only 60 regular-seasons games for the Jets in the decade -- five seasons -- but it was enough time to establish himself as one of the best defensive players in franchise history. He was a first-team All-Pro three times with the Jets (2009-11) and again in 2014 with the Patriots. In his prime, he was a true shutdown corner. Opponents marveled at his press-man technique, which allowed him to jam and re-route receivers at the line. Revis didn't post gaudy stats (29 career interceptions), mainly because opponents were afraid to test him. He made "Revis Island" so popular that it appears in the Urban Dictionary. Definition: "A place where NFL wide receivers frequently get lost."

Honorable mention: Nick Mangold, C, 2006-16. Mangold, who anchored the Jets' offensive line for 11 seasons, was selected to five Pro Bowls and named first-team All-Pro (2010) during the decade. As a center, he was tough, durable and intelligent. His smarts proved useful, as he spent most of the decade shepherding young quarterbacks. Known for his bushy beard and backward baseball cap, Mangold was the face of the offensive line during his heyday. -- Rich Cimini

AFC East coach of the decade



Bill Belichick, Patriots


Years with team: 2000-present

Also the NFL coach of the decade, Belichick was the obvious choice as tops in the AFC East. His team won the division every year. A clean sweep. It couldn't have been any more decisive. -- Mike Reiss

Honorable mention: Rex Ryan, Jets, 2009-14; Bills 2015-16. One of the most notable division upsets of the decade came in 2010 when Ryan's Jets came to Foxborough and shocked the Patriots in the divisional round of the playoffs. What made the result even more impressive was that the Jets had been whacked 45-3 by the Patriots about a month earlier. Ryan's stints with the Jets and Bills earn him the nod over Sean McDermott (Bills, 2017-present). -- Mike Reiss

ESPN's AFC East All-Decade Team


Voted on by ESPN's AFC East reporters.

OFFENSE

QB: Tom Brady, Patriots, 2000-19

RB: LeSean McCoy, Bills, 2015-18

WR: Brandon Marshall, Dolphins, 2010-11; Jets, 2015-16

WR: Julian Edelman, Patriots, 2009-present

WR: Jarvis Landry, Dolphins, 2014-17


TE: Rob Gronkowski, Patriots, 2010-18

OT: D'Brickashaw Ferguson, Jets, 2006-15

G: Logan Mankins, Patriots, 2005-13

C: Nick Mangold, Jets, 2006-16

G: Richie Incognito, Bills, 2009, 2015-17; Dolphins, 2010-13

OT: Nate Solder, Patriots, 2011-17

DEFENSE

DE: Cameron Wake, Dolphins, 2009-18

DT: Kyle Williams, Bills, 2006-18

DT: Vince Wilfork, Patriots, 2004-14

DE: Mario Williams, Bills, 2012-15; Dolphins 2016

LB: David Harris, Jets, 2007-16; Patriots, 2017

LB: Dont'a Hightower, Patriots, 2012-present

LB: Chandler Jones, Patriots, 2012-15

CB: Darrelle Revis, Jets, 2007-12, 2015-16; Patriots, 2014

CB: Stephon Gilmore, Bills 2012-16; Patriots, 2017-present

S: Reshad Jones, Dolphins, 2010-19

S: Devin McCourty, Patriots, 2010-present

SPECIAL TEAMS

KR/PR: Jakeem Grant, Dolphins, 2016-present

K: Stephen Gostkowski, Patriots, 2006-19

P: Brandon Fields, Dolphins, 2007-14

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