The 10 Best Football Cleats 2018: Ultimate Buyer’s Guide

Best Football Cleat Reviews

Don’t underestimate the importance of wearing the proper cleats this upcoming football season!  Football is an intense sport that is not easy to play well. A lot of things have to come together for a person to excel at the sport. You need natural athletic ability, good hand-eye coordination and a tremendous work ethic too. Even these things are enough alone to be successful at the game of football and the equipment you wear makes a huge difference too. Among the most important pieces of football equipment you will wear are your cleats.

Why is having the best football cleats you can buy important? It has everything to do with proper footing and support. Football is a game that requires you to constantly plant your feet and turn in different directions as you adjust to movements on the field as you play the game. The slightest misstep can cause a running back not to get to an open hole fast enough or cause a cornerback to let a receiver get a step on them to make a catch.

In a game of inches such as football is, the last thing you want to have to worry about is traction and foot support as you are playing it. So having a good pair of cleats for the type of surface you are playing on can be critical to how well you play the game on any given day. Make sure you don’t just buy any old pair of football cleats to wear while you or your child is playing the game and get a pair that meets the essential football footwear needs for whoever is going to wear them.

Top Football Cleat Comparison Chart

Football Cleat Buying Guide

Here are some of the most common characteristics of football cleats that you should base your buying decision on:

  • Price

Price is always a very big consideration when you buy football cleats or anything else for that matter. When you shop for an item like football shoes you should set a budget for the amount of money you have to spend. It makes no sense to take the time to look at football cleats that are out of the price range you want to spend. This is a good way to eliminate shopping choices right away to narrow down your buying choices.

Also, don’t make the mistake of shopping on price alone and thinking it represents the quality of the football cleat you are thinking about buying. The most expensive football cleats are not always the best ones and sometimes you can find some real bargain buys on cleats too. Be sure to compare the other important cleat buying features that will be discussed here and get as many of them as you can for the price you are willing to spend.

  • Fit

It is an absolute must that any football cleat that you buy fit properly. A good fit is essential to having football shoes perform the way they were designed and to help prevent injuries too. Not to mention, if you wear football cleats that are too loose or too tight they will be so uncomfortable that they will become a distraction as you play the game.

The key to having a football cleat that fits right is to buy a pair that is snug but not too tight. They should have just a little room between your toes and the front of the shoe and everyplace else your foot should be pressing up against the material of the shoe. If your football shoe fits this way, then they will become an extension of your foot and move the same way it does. This is essential when you are making cuts that the various offensive and defensive moves in football require.

  • Height

Just like basketball shoes and other types of sports shoes, football cleats come in a variety of different heights. There is no steadfast rule on what height works best for everyone because individual players have different needs when it comes to support and flexibility. Past injuries and foot muscular or skeletal concerns also play a role in the selection of football shoe height too.

Football cleats generally come in one of three different height selections:

  • Low

Players that don’t require a lot of support for their feet and like the maximum amount of freedom of movement often choose football cleats that are low in height. We mentioned a football shoe should be an extension of your foot and move with it; there is no better type of football cleat that will perform like this than a low cut style football shoe.

  • Mid-High

Mid-high football cleats are great for those that like a little more support and protection while playing the game of football. This type of football shoe will support you toward the ankle to help provide an extra layer of protection around your ankles to help prevent injuries. They are very popular because they still allow your foot to have a wide range of movement while wearing them.

  • High

These height football cleats offer more protection and support than any other height of football shoe. They are worn by many players who have suffered previous foot and ankle injuries in the past because they are football shoes that support the foot and ankle all the way around. That is why they are so popular among players who play on the offensive or defensive line because these positions require planting your feet on every single play. The extra support they provide while planting helps prevent injuries and helps these types of players get the leverage that is demanded from their position.

  • Weight

Shoes are made out of different materials that all add various weights to a football cleat. You want to keep your shoes at light as possible without sacrificing support or protection. You also don’t want football shoes that are so lightweight that they cannot stand up to the rigors that the game sometimes demands of football cleats. Look for football cleats that incorporate a lot of synthetic materials into their design that keep them as lightweight as possible.

  • Material

Cleat material and weight are close cousins that often go hand in hand with one another. Don’t mistake that for saying that shoes made of lighter material do not offer as much support and protection as heavier materials but in some cases, it is definitely true.

Shoes that are made predominately out of leather and other hides tend to support your foot well and offer the most protection against things such as accidental kicks and banging body parts. These materials also tend to help a football cleat last longer before needing to replace them.

Meshes and dry wicking material are ultra-lightweight and comfortable but in most cases do not offer much extra support or padding. These materials also seem to offer the most freedom of movement while playing the game too.

So it is important to choose the shoe material in the football cleats you will buy based on what your personal preferences are in terms of support, protection, and durability.

  • Lacing

This is one that many people take for granted and that is surprising because of how important it is. It does not matter how good the material a football cleat is made of is at supporting or protecting your foot and ankle area if it does not lace up properly. For example; high football cleats should lace up all the way to the top of the boot and do so in a manner that adds a lot of support to the ankle. Eyelets must also be positioned in a way that they will help hold the laces snuggly place once they are tightened.

  • Soles

Soles on a football cleat are another characteristic that is an important part of determining if a particular football shoe is right for you. Most of the time the soles on a football shoe will be made of some form of rubber but there will still be subtle differences between brands.

Some soles will have such things as more flexibility from one brand over another. There are soles that are made of harder rubber too which are less flexible but may offer you more protection. Many companies even put advanced technology onto the soles of their football cleats, such as designing pivot points into the arch on their particular sole. So take a quick look at the sole composition and design of any football cleat you are considering purchasing.

  • Cleat Design

Cleat design is very important to consider and many people purchase more than one type of football shoe because of this very factor. There are many different types of field surfaces that football is played on and not all models of football cleats can be universally played on them all. Some models of football shoes are specially made for use on natural grass fields and yet others are made to be used on such surfaces as field turf or other forms of artificial turf.

You have to consider these things because you don’t want to do something like buy a pair of football shoes that is designed for use on artificial turf if you play all of your home football games on a natural grass football field.

  • Quality/Brand Reputation

You will notice there are some brands on our ‘top 10 list of the best football cleats’ that have more than one football shoe listed. Like all products, certain brand football shoes seem to be of consistently higher quality than others. It is never a bad idea to factor the popularity and reputation of a particular brand of football shoe into your purchasing decision.

It is probably not your most important characteristic of a football cleat to consider. As a matter of fact, there are some lesser known brands that are still quality football shoes. But it is the type of criteria that can be used to help you make the final buying decision between two different brands of shoes that you really like. It is never a bad idea to go with the most reputable brand if all the other characteristics between two different pairs of football cleats you like are roughly equal.

  • Intangibles

It’s no secret that some companies are more innovative than others when it comes to designing their football cleats with special features that other brands of football shoes don’t have. Examples of this are Under Armour’s Velcro power strap that provides extra support to for top of your ankles and Adidas no tie elastic laces. Additional features such as these can make the difference if you have a tough buying decision, so take the time to consider them when cleat shopping.

  • Design

Last but certainly not least, there is nothing at all that says you can’t look good while playing the game of football and there are some really stylish football cleat designs out there. You once again don’t want to emphasize this over something more important like shoe height, but it can be a difference maker when you are having a hard time deciding between two very similar models of football cleats.

Having a stylish pair of football cleats will not only help you look good in a football uniform but it may give you a little confidence boost too. So don’t be afraid to buy a shoe that has one of today’s very stylish looking designs.

Best Football Cleat Reviews

After taking a closer look at dozens of different brand and model football cleats here is what we feel are the ten best football cleat models available for purchase in the sports marketplace:

  1. Under Armour Men’s UA C1N MC Football Cleats

Pros:

  • Ultra-high cut style for maximum support
  • Extremely flexible
  • Molded foam footbed for maximum comfort

Cons:

  • Won’t fit in every player’s budget
  • Some of the chrome may easily chip off
  • Not enough color choices

Fantastic is the only way to describe these superior football cleats from Under Armour. Consensus opinion here is they were definitely at the head of the class of all the football shoes we tested. They look good, are built to last and have a nice cleat design for great traction when wearing them.  Under Armour has been growing steadily for years and will soon rival Nike as a leader in the sports and fitness equipment market.

These were originally designed to meet the needs of NFL quarterback Cam Newton; a player that has an excellent all-around game. That is actually a great way to describe these cleats because they are good in every facet of football shoes that you need. They are made of synthetic material to make them lightweight, are comfortable, have great support and help you cut on a dime.

They have a molded foam footbed that will take the shape of your foot after wearing them a few times to maximize your comfort when wearing them. Also featured in them is an excellent ankle support that even includes a removable ankle strap. When you consider the fact these football cleats are extremely stylish, then it really puts these football shoes over the top.

 

  1. Under Armour Men’s UA Highlight RM Football Cleat

Pros:

  • High cut style for great support
  • Extremely flexible
  • Lightweight synthetic and mesh

Cons:

  • Not for everyone’s budget
  • No extra padding
  • Aggressive cleat design not good for short turf

You will see the Under Armour brand appear many times on this list of best football cleats and this shoe may be their absolute best design. It has just about anything you would look for in a football cleat. It is protective, provides great support and this pair of football shoes even has a very stylish look to it.

The football cleats have an aggressive tread design that will ensure you have good footing on both natural grass and on longer field turf. You will be able to dig in and cut with them even on a wet field or other less than desirable field conditions.

These football shoes offer an extreme amount of support to those that wear them too. They lace up tight all the way to the top of the high cut boot for additional support but they are still light and comfortable thanks to the synthetic and mesh materials used in their construction.

We all were very impressed with the overall quality of these fine football cleats.

 

  1. Under Armour Kids UA C1N MC Jr. Football Cleat

Pros:

  • High cut style for great support
  • Budget-friendly
  • Lightweight synthetic and mesh

Cons:

  • Not easy to lace
  • Support is too tight for some
  • Not ideal for natural grass fields

Under Armour once again has added another great football cleat to our top 10 best football cleats list. This pair is designed especially for younger players and proves that younger players can get very good football footwear for a budget-friendly price. There is simply a lot that these football-friendly shoes have to offer any junior player that buys them.

They are a high top cleat which is great for supporting the foot and ankle structure on younger players which might not be as developed as it is on their older peers. These shoes lace up tightly all the way over the ankle and even have an additional power strap for an even snugger fit.

These shoes are designed more for synthetic playing fields than grass and they offer superior traction on those types of playing fields. They feature a tread design that will help any young player make the aggressive cuts and pivots necessary to excel at the game of football.

To top it all off this model of Under Armour football cleats is very stylish and comes in several different colors to choose from.

 

  1. Adidas Performance Men’s Adizero 5-Star 5.0 Football Shoe

Pros:

  • low cut style with great flexibility
  • Heel cups to lock your foot in place
  • Ultra-lightweight synthetic and mesh material

Cons:

  • We thought these were lightweight but stiff
  • No ankle support
  • Scuff a little easily

Here is the top football cleat from the reputable Adidas Company on our list. This one is for those football players that really cherish both traction and flexibility when wearing football shoes. The low height of these means you will have a lot of freedom of movement to make pinpoint cuts and quick pivots when you are wearing them

The design of these football cleats is very good, to say the least, and there is a lot more to them than meets the eye. They have features such as heel cups that really hold the shoe tight to your foot so the shoe moves with your foot movements as you are playing. The web and synthetic material also keep these shoes very lightweight.

These football cleats come in black or white and will compliment any uniform they are worn with. There is simply much to like about this fine pair of football shoes.

 

  1. Adidas Performance Men’s Turf Hog LX Mid Football Cleat

Pros:

  • Mid-high cut style for great support
  • Budget-friendly for leather
  • Ultra-inside padding for comfort

Cons:

  • Not all of us like how they laced up
  • Support is too tight for some
  • Not ideal for natural grass fields

Here is another fine football cleat from Adidas. These shoes are specially designed to be worn on predominately turf fields. You will be cutting and shifting like the pros if you wear these. They are affordably priced all leather shoe that offers those who wear them a lot.

Other than the fact these are great on turf surfaces, the best thing about these football cleats is how incredibly comfortable they are to wear. They feature such things as tough but breathable leather, a cushioned midsole, and a nice foam lining to make these very comfortable to play in.

This all handmade shoe is very stylish too. It comes in an all-black design and features Adidas signature accent striping in white. It has a unique lacing system that requires little tightening and the midsole style offers you some good ankle support while wearing them.

 

  1. Nike Kids’ Vapor Shark 2 Football Cleats

Here is a great football cleat from Nike that is geared toward younger football players. It is popular because it is both a stylish and functional football shoe that offers those who wear them maximum flexibility. After examining it we found there is much to like about this cleat from the reliable shoe manufacturer Nike.

The best thing about these football shoes is the way Nike has placed the cleats on them. It is a different design pattern than we normally see but those kids who use these tell us they get great traction on all types of surfaces. Not to mention, the specially designed sole also enhances a child’s overall foot flexibility when wearing these football cleats.

Not only do these football cleats have great traction and move nicely when wearing them but they are also comfortable and very lightweight. The comfort is enhanced by the full-length midsole built into them. Mesh and other synthetic materials help contribute to their light weight.

 

  1. Nike Kids Alpha Shark 2 3/4 Bg Football Cleat

Pros:

  • Mid-high cut style for nice support
  • Wear more like a sneaker
  • Comfortable and stylish

Cons:

  • Some durability issues due to their construction
  • A little narrow fit
  • Not ideal for natural grass fields

Here is another fine football shoe from Nike that is ideal for younger football players. They fit well and are designed in a way that will help any youth player become a budding superstar. They are a very comfortable football cleat that offers those that wear them a tremendous amount of support for their feet.

They wear more like a sneaker than they do a typical football cleat. It’s a football shoe that laces up snuggly for optimum support without being overtight. These cleats are also high enough to support a child’s delicate ankle area when playing the physical sport of football.

These Nike football cleats will not only enhance any youth football player’s performance but they will also have them looking good while they are doing it. They are a very stylish football shoe that is available in a variety of colors.

 

  1. Adidas Performance Men’s Filthyspeed Low Football Cleat

Pros:

  • low cut cleat allows great flexibility
  • Sophisticated and lightweight sole design
  • Super stylish football shoes

Cons:

  • The style may be too loud for some
  • No ankle support
  • Synthetic construction durability issues

Adidas makes our list once again with a men’s football shoe that offers those who wear it maximum flexibility and very unique styling all its own. These shoes were definitely designed for those players who want to get to a certain place on the football field fast and then cut on a dime.

This football cleat features one of the most interesting sole designs of all those that we tested. Not only are the studs well placed on the bottom of these cleats but the plastic sole plate has added grooves in it also. This will further enhance the traction and cutting ability you get when wearing these well-designed football shoes.

The stylish looks of these cleats was also very popular amongst us. Only the older people on our panel had a problem with it and thought it was a bit too much. Adidas describes it as a camouflage pattern but we would term it more of an ultra-modern and artistic design. When these cleats are paired in combination with the right uniform they look awesome.

 

  1. Under Armour Men’s UA Spine Brawler Mid MC Sneaker

Pros:

  • High cut style for the ultimate in support
  • Comfortable foam collar
  • Lightweight synthetic and mesh

Cons:

  • Won’t fit in every player’s budget
  • Ankle support is not tight enough for some
  • Durability issues on some surfaces

This is a really well-designed, high-cut football cleat. It has many features that you should look for in any shoe that will help you perform better while playing football. It is clear that Under Armour put a lot of thought into the design of this shoe before it went into production.

Although it is a sturdy shoe that offers those who wear it good support, it is still a very lightweight football cleat thanks to the synthetic materials it is made out of. Even the sole plate is made of sturdy yet lightweight material. High-cut football cleats are rarely this light.

It had to be one of the most comfortable shoes to wear that we tested too. It was well padded all around with foam-like material and the ankle area of this football cleat really conforms to the shape of your ankle too. Lineman will love these because they offer a little more flexibility than most high cut football shoes that feature a large amount of support.

 

  1. Nike Men’s Alpha Shark 3/4

Pros:

  • Mid-high cut style for nice support
  • Wears more like a sneaker
  • Comfortable and snug lacing

Cons:

  • Shiner upper may scuff easily
  • This line seems to run narrow
  • Not ideal for natural grass fields

Not only does the Nike Alpha Shark come in a really good youth model that is great for younger football players but there is an adult version of this popular football cleat too. It is a shoe that will offer any high school or college age football player an extreme amount of support and comfort.

They are a football shoe that moves securely along with any player’s foot and they will help that player make fast and smooth cuts as they are playing the game. These football cleats offer similar support and comfort to that of a good basketball shoe. They really are extremely comfortable to wear.

These cleats also feature a superior lacing system that only adds to their already good support and they are made of very lightweight synthetic materials too. Even the sole of this football cleat uses an advanced synthetic material to help keep them light on your feet when wearing them.

It is also a very stylish shoe that can be purchased in a variety of colors too.

 

Now you have all the Information to Find the Right Football Cleat For You Or Your Child

Looking for and finding the right football cleat does not have to be as difficult as it seems in spite of all the choices there is in the marketplace. I hope that I’ve given you some excellent information as to the key characteristics to look for in a football shoe when making a purchase and also backed that up with some examples of the best football cleats that money can buy.

Among all the cleats that we took a look at and tried out two football cleat models really jumped out at us. One is the budget-friendly Men’s Filthyspeed Low Football Cleat from Adidas that was stylish, lightweight and comfortable. The other was the Under Armour Men’s UA C1N MC Football Cleats; they were by far the best overall football cleat that we tested.

So take your time when shopping for football cleats. With all the choices there are in the marketplace, if you follow the advice here (or here if you need more info) you should have no problem finding a football shoe that works nicely for you or your child and will fit nicely into your budget too.

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