Move over Tom Brady and Tony Romo, there are some new hot players on the block! NFL players don't need to be Mr. Gisele Bundchen or once romantically linked to Jessica Simpson (in fact, I prefer that they're not!) to prove prime male specimen for my daydreams. Below are the league's best candidates for your football fantasies (and also wouldn't be too shabby for your actual fantasy team as well). You won't embarrass yourself if you rock a jersey of any of these fellows on Sunday afternoons... just leave the rhinestones and bedazzler at home. Please.
1. Miles Austin, Dallas Cowboys, Wide Receiver While Austin is not the only former Kim Kardashian flame in the league (ahem, Reggie Bush), he does hold claim to the prettiest eyes and best smile. Seriously, can this guy please play WITHOUT a helmet? But, I digress... As two-time Pro Bowler and the Cowboys' franchise record-holder for most receiving yards in a single game (250), you can be sure to see Dallas QB Tony Romo connecting with him more moving forward now that he's finally back from nursing a preseason hamstring injury. I wouldn't hesitate to meet this guy in the end zone, if you know what I'm saying... wink wink.
2. Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens, Running Back Rice (seen above, right, getting some pointers from the legendary Ray Lewis during a training camp practice) burst onto the scene in 2008 as Baltimore's No. 2 draft pick after a standout sophomore and junior seasons at Rutgers University. Standing at a generous 5' 8", the pint-sized running back packs an illusive punch for opposing defenses and is on track for yet another 1000+ yard rushing season while currently being the most targeted Ravens player for both rush and receptions. You may also recognize Rice from the Gillette "Young Guns" campaign where he flexed and charmed his way into the hearts of many. And, man, do I ever love a guy in purple!
3. Wes Welker, New England Patriots, Wide Receiver Milk has certainly done this body good. When Tom Brady is not busy posing for UGG or impregnating attractive brunettes, he's throwing touchdown receptions to this man. Welker, or "White Lightning" in some circles, is famous for burning the secondary on his way over the goal line. Good for double-digit fantasy points most weeks and in a pinch, an extra point (!), Welker is equally well-known for his sense of humor. Check out this video of his infamous snow angel touchdown celebration.
4. Shaun Suisham, Pittsburgh Steelers, Kicker After bouncing from the Cowboys to 49ers to the Redskins and back to Cowboys for a brief stint, it looks like Suisham has finally found a home with the Pittsburgh Steelers. This swoon-worthy Canadian placekicker is the only NFL player in history to have kicked 4 field goals of 40+ yards in one game -- and he's done this TWICE -- and looked DAMN FINE doing it. Can we apply that Miles Austin no helmet rule to this man, too?
5. Tim Tebow, Denver Broncos, Quarterback Tim Tebow, America's sweetheart, is finally getting the start as QB No. 1 in Denver following the benching of veteran Kyle Orton. This God-fearing momma's boy is perhaps best known for his emotional response to the Gators' loss at the hands of Alabama in 2009's SEC championship match -- hey ladies, he's sensitive! The city of Denver demanded Teebs as the future face of the franchise, clearly hopeful for a second coming of their former Mile High God, John Elway. Tebow is definitely a good candidate for "bring home to Mom" status.
Do you have any favorite heartthrob football players? Which of the above dudes makes you swoon the hardest?