10. Nick Collins
Nick Collins had his professional career cut short due to a neck injury that forced him into early retirement. However, he played to his full potential during this decade and finished it at the height of his powers.
After being selected with the 51st overall pick in the second round of the 2005 draft, he didn’t disappoint. He started all 16 games his rookie year and only missed three games during the whole decade.
During his time, he established himself as a true ball-hawking safety and one quarterbacks were afraid to throw toward. Just ask Ben Roethlisberger who has one of his passes picked off by Collins and returned for a touchdown.
Collins finished the decade ranked third in interceptions with 17, including a career-high seven in 2008. He followed that up with six in 2009 and was on his way to becoming one of the best free safeties in the game. He earned Pro Bowl honors in 2008, 2009 and 2010 and kicks off the back half of our list.