Posted January 30, 2013

The 60 Best Athletes To Follow On Instagram

Food, hotels, fashion and selfies from the world's top jocks

Lists, Media, Photos

No social network has blown up more over the past year than Instagram — which claims 90 million monthly active users sharing 40 million photos per day – and the sports world is no stranger to the trend. Seems like every day another athlete is signing up, some producing better results than others. Here are Extra Mustard’s picks for the 60 must-follow athletes on the photo-sharing app.


1. Kevin Durant (@sniperjones35)

The three-time NBA scoring champ and Olympic gold medalist shares a healthy mix of candids, throwbacks and fashion shots.


2. Serena Williams (@serenawilliams)

The 15-time Grand Slam queen can be guarded in interviews, but you’d never know it from a feed that allows fans a candid view of her goofy side.


3. LeBron James (@kingjames)

Resist the urge to read between the lines and enjoy a glimpse into the life of one of the most scrutinized athletes in history.


4. DeSean Jackson (@jaccpot10)

The mercurial Eagles wide receiver delivers a vastly entertaining stream, whether he’s gallivanting (or beefing) with rappers or sharing fortune-cookie wisdom via textgram.


5. Mike Tyson (@miketyson)

Social media has played no small part in the former heavyweight champ’s image rehabilitation and his feed — laden with celeb cameos and vintage shots — is an obvious example why.


6. Usain Bolt (@usainbolt)

You’d never know this breezy, eccentric photo stream came from the Fastest Man on the Planet.


7. Michelle Wie (@themichellewie)

One of the most talked-about players on the women’s tour has quickly become one of its most popular Instagrammers.


8. Kelly Slater (@kellyslater)

Slater, both the youngest and oldest surfer to win an ASP title, spends his life in paradise and is generous enough to share it with the rest of us.


9. James Harrison (@jharrison9292)

The Pittsburgh Steelers’ Pro Bowl linebacker keeps it fresh with the fashion and keeps it real with his second-amendment rights.


10. Brad Richards (@brichards_1991)

The longtime Tampa Bay and Dallas forward has taken quite nicely to life in New York, sharing glimpses of his life on and off the ice.


11. Tyreke Evans (@tyrekeevans)

The Sacramento Kings’ swingman and former Rookie of the Year appreciates the finer things — sneakers, watches, jewelry — with a few surprise candids thrown in.


12. Neymar (@njunior11)

With nearly 1,200 photos and well over half a million followers, the Brazilian superstar — whom Pele has called an even better footballer than Lionel Messi — is one of the most prolific athletes on Instagram.


13. Adrian Clayborn (@ajaclay94)

The Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ defensive end, one of the NFL’s most active Instagrammers, shares photos of whatever happens to be around — which often happens to be his adorable pit bull and bull mastiff.


14. J.R. Smith (@therealjrsmith)

The mercurial New York Knicks shooting guard proves to be as unpredictable off the court as he is on it.


15. Stephanie Rice (@itsstephrice)

The three-time Olympic gold medal winner from Australia promotes a healthy lifestyle — lots of salad pics — and isn’t bashful about showing off the benefits thereof.

16. Floyd Mayweather (@floydmayweather)


When the world’s highest earning athlete isn’t sharing his winning betting slaps — does he ever lose? — a steady diet of candid shots (often featuring celebrities and hangers-on) fills the gaps.


17. Adam Jones (@simplyaj10)

Must love dogs. And food. The Baltimore Orioles’ center fielder delivers pics of both in bulk.


18. Tony Hawk (@tonyhawk)

The skateboarding legend delivers one eye-popping shot after another, typically involving him jumping off things.


19. Victoria Azarenka (@vichka35)

The world’s No. 1-ranked women’s tennis player keeps it breezy while showcasing the globetrotting life of a touring pro.


20. Rickie Fowler (@therealrickiefowler)

One of fastest rising stars in golf has used Instagram to build his brand as well as any athlete today, amassing more than 27,000 followers since joining around Thanksgiving.


21. Chad Ochocinco (@ochocinco)

The free-agent wide receiver has never shied away from social media, so it little surprise his offbeat feed is among the most followed on the entire network.


22. Shane Victorino (@shanevictorino18)

Aloha! The Red Sox center fielder best known as the Flyin’ Hawaiian loves sneakers, food and the UFC.


23. Michael Phelps (@m_phelps00)

Now that he’s won more Olympics medals than anyone in history, the 27-year-old is spends his time traveling the world, repping the Ravens and honing his golf game.


24. Carmelo Anthony (@carmeloanthony)

As long as you don’t mind having your feed saturated with pics of impossibly expensive wristwatches — Melo loves watches — this feed takes you behind the scenes with the six-time NBA All-Star.


25. Allyson Felix (@af85)

Felix, who won more gold medals this summer than any female track athlete since 1988, shows off her sporty and elegant sides with equal grace and humor.


26. Joe Lauzon (@joelauzon)

The UFC lightweight and confessed video game nerd isn’t shy about showing off the collateral damage of his rugged sport.


27. Russell Westbrook (@russwest44)

The Oklahoma City Thunder point guard’s feed blends the fabulous life of NBA stardom with his personal brand of hipster chic.


28. Sloane Stephens (@sloanestephens)

The social-media-savvy 19-year-old tennis phenom and breakthrough star of this year’s Australian Open enjoys sharing pics from her past as much as her present.


29. Kevin Love (@kevinlove)

The Minnesota Timberwolves’ power forward gained a massive following during the London Olympics and has only gotten more popular since.


30. Kaka (@kaka)

The 2007 FIFA World Player of the Year shows fans what’s behind the curtain at Real Madrid while cultivating one of the largest followings on Instagram.


31. Jimmie Johnson (@jimmiejohnson)

The five-time NASCAR champion is also a winner in the social space, inviting followers into the garage and beyond.


32. Chris Paul (@cp3)

Come for the eccentric fashion sense, stay for the adorable pics of the L.A. Clippers point guard with his 3-year-old son.


33. McKayla Maroney (@mckaylamaroney)

The 17-year-old Olympic champion impresses her more than half a million fans with a feed that’s documented the Fierce Five’s extended victory lap.


34. James Harden (@jharden13)

Another Team USA hoopster whose Instagram feed blew up during the Olympics, the stylish Houston Rockets’ power forward boasts one of the most absorbing feeds around.


35. Gretchen Bleiler (@GretchenBleiler)

The halfpipe snowboarder and Olympic silver medalist delivers pics of gorgeous landscapes, costumed dogs and her rigorous training.


36. Juan Mata (@juanmatagarcia)

The Chelsea midfielder is a world class footballer on the pitch — and just another Spaniard getting to know London off it.


37. Deron Williams (@dwill8)

From team charter planes to the locker room, the Brooklyn Nets’ point guard takes you behind the scenes of the NBA life.


38. Jordyn Wieber (@jordyn_wieber)

Since capturing gold at the London Olympics, the gymnast has been readjusting to the normal teenage life of ice skating and Justin Bieber concerts.


39. Anthony Davis (@ant_davis23)

The first overall pick of last year’s NBA draft takes fans inside a rookie’s life as he reps his Kentucky past and New Orleans future with equal fervor.


40. Mick Fanning (@mfanno)

The Australian pro surfer and two-time ASP champion takes fans behind the scenes of the tour and beyond, sharing pics composed with care and humor.


41. Dwyane Wade (@dwyanewade)

The 2006 Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year clearly appreciates the finer things — and an unapologetic love of luxury makes for an absorbing feed.


42. Laura Robson (@laurarobson5)

The next big thing in British tennis shares her passion for puppies, planking, cooking and One Direction on a feed curated with the care of a social-media veteran.


43. Cristiano Ronaldo (@cristiano)

The Portuguese megastar blends professionally taken action shots with candid pics snapped around the Real Madrid training ground.


44. Paula Creamer (@paulacreamer1)

Long regarded as one of the most popular golfers on the LPGA Tour, Creamer’s feed expresses her love of golf, the Starbucks non-fat peppermint latte and her puppy Studley.


45. Nate Robinson (@naterobinson)

The diminutive Chicago Bulls point guard blends goofy and artsy with his behind-the-scenes pics and liberal use of Instagram’s filters.


46. Janko Tipsarevic (@tipsarevicjanko)

One of tennis’ more eclectic, eccentric personalities — a professed fan of Nietzsche and Kant — isn’t afraid to let his personality shine through.


47. Adrien Broner (@adrienbroner)

The cocksure young fighter, already a champion of two divisions at 23, says he wants to be the first boxer to generate a billion dollars. His colorful feed suggests he may just have the personality to do it.


48. Anna Rawson (@annarawson)

The 31-year-old Australian stunner lives the dual life of a professional golfer and model — and takes fans behind the scenes of both worlds.


49. Kyrie Irving (@k1irving)

The Cleveland Cavaliers’ point guard and former No. 1 draft pick shares a glimpse of the good life — though he’s slowed down a tad since he was caught cheating on his girlfriend via Instagram.


50. Lewis Hamilton (@lewishamilton)

The popular Formula One driver from Great Britain takes you into the weight room, onto the slopes and even to the road courses where he earns his fortune.


51. Pat Barry (@hypeordie)

The UFC heavyweight’s entertaining feed includes the constant presence of his girlfriend and fellow mixed martial artist Rose Namajunas (whose foot appears below).


52. DeMarcus Cousins (@boogiecousins)

The 22-year-old center for the Sacramento Kings is clearly enjoying the NBA life — and isn’t afraid to show it.


53. Cesc Fabregas (@cescf4bregas)

The 25-year-old midfielder for Barcelona and the Spanish national team shares a pastiche of interesting photos from around the globe.


54. Antrel Rolle (@antrelrolle)

The Pro Bowl free safety kept entertaining on Instagram all season long even as his languishing New York Giants missed the playoffs.


55. LaMarcus Aldridge (@aldridge_12)

The Portland Trail Blazers’ big man offers a little bit of everything: shots of game action, family, vacations and plenty more.


56. Vernon Davis (@vernondavis85)

The San Francisco 49ers’ tight end surpassed 1 million followers early this year, no surprise given the frequency and consistently high entertainment value of his offerings.


57. Ben Crane (@bencranegolf)

The PGA Tour golfer and professional goofball uses Instagram to show off his eccentric personality.


58. Evan Turner (@evanalmighty12)

The Philadelphia 76ers’ swingman loves his dogs, his teammates, his friends … and Waffle House.


59. Alex Morgan (@alex_morgan13)

She’s slowed her pace since the Olympics, but the 23-year-old soccer star produced some of the most enduring social-media moments from the London Games.


60. Falcao (@falcao_9)

The Colombia and Atlético Madrid striker has elevated the selfie to an art form, whether he’s kicking it with Adrien Brody or swimming with the dolphins.


Follow Bryan Armen Graham on Twitter.

5 comments
Revsoul2
Revsoul2

Israel Idonije of the Bears is nice as well as Kobe Bryant....ijs

elsqueak0
elsqueak0

The picture of McKayla Maroney (17 years old) is wildly inappropriate to include in this list.

Lenny1
Lenny1

did you miss biz nasty or did i?

dustingariepy
dustingariepy

Um... no Alana Blanchard on this list??? Really voids any credibility the list has.