The prototypical receiving tight end, Sharpe was long John Elway's favorite target and shattered all the records at his position until Gonzalez passed him. Sharpe excelled in the postseason: His teams won 12 straight playoff games, including three Super Bowls.
Hall of Fame status: finalist 2009, '10
5. Dave Casper, Raiders, Oilers, Vikings, 1974--84
A tackle for much of his time at Notre Dame, Casper was a devastating blocker with soft hands. His offensive stats (378 catches, 13.8 yards per catch) were pedestrian, but he became a key scoring presence for both Oakland and Houston.
Hall of Fame status: inducted 2002
6. Ozzie Newsome, Browns, 1978--90
One of the first "flex" players—a hybrid wide receiver--tight end—Newsome was his team's most important target for several years and had back-to-back 89-catch seasons in '83 and '84. He never missed a game to injury in 13 seasons.
Hall of Fame status: inducted 1999
7. Kellen Winslow, Chargers, 1979--87
Amazing that at 251 pounds Winslow was so lithe, essentially serving as an extra wide receiver for Dan Fouts for much of their careers. Winslow had three 1,000-yard seasons out of nine years, and his 13-catch, 166-yard performance at Miami in January '82 is the best postseason game by a tight end.