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Best Football Cleats 2018: Top 10 Football Cleats And Product Comparison

Whether you’re playing football or rugby, having a quality pair of cleats is essential. With so many on the market today, it can be difficult to determine which features you need for the precise position you might play. This guide attempts to highlight which cleats are best for which positions as well as outline the pros and cons of each type of shoe.

Product FAQs


A football cleat is a shoe worn by football players. On these shoe’s soles are cleats, heavy protrusions that jut out to give the wearer more traction and greater running speed. They also dig into the ground to help a defensive player push back against the opposing players.

 This question really depends on the position you play. Some cleats are perfect for speed, while others are crafted for defense. On the other hand, some cleats are just so well-made that they can be used in almost any situation, which means they have the upper hand on some of the specialty cleats. Of course, analyzing your own position and needs can determine the best football cleat for you.

To determine the pros and cons of the best football cleats, we did lots of research. We gathered data from a variety of sources, including customer reviews, shoe comparison data, other review sites, and our own personal analysis. By gathering lots of different sources, you’re able to get a more detailed report on the best cleats for you.

Football cleats can range in price quite a bit, depending on the brand, size, and design you might need. Some are highly affordable and cost anywhere from $$ to $$. On the flip side, some can be rather expensive, costing well over $$$ and even into the $$$ range.

Top 10 Best Football Cleats

1. Under Armour Men's UA Highlight MC

 

Under Armour Men's UA Highlight MC
  • Worn & trusted by some of the game's most elite players – including Eddie Lacy, Aqib Talib, Vontaze Burfict, Ryan...
  • UA ClutchFitTM wraps your foot in a "second skin" for powerful support & an incredible feel
  • 3D-molded tongue gives you unrivaled comfort & added protection

Made from an extremely lightweight material, this cleat is easy to run in and has high levels of flexibility. In fact, it’s hard to find a high top cleat as bendy as this one. With a well-supported high top, the upper part of the cleat gives its wearer solid sustaining power and comfort. Moreover, because the shoe is formed for the foot’s exact shape, it offers more traction and less slippage than similarly priced-cleats. The unique blend of support, flexibility, and comfort make this Under Armour product the ideal cleat for nearly any sport you can think of. This is an amazing all-around cleat for anyone.

PROS

  • Top-quality support
  • Lightweight
  • Comfortable
  • Excellent traction
  • Comes in several colors

CONS

  • Expensive
  • Sizing tends to be small
  • Lengthy times to put on

Pricing

Depending on the style and size you choose, these cleats can cost anywhere between $$ and $$$.

Where to Buy

These Under Armour cleats can be purchased from Amazon.com.

Perfect For

Any sport or activity that requires cleats.

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These cleats offer good ankle support and a sturdy step. The wide strap gives greater stability than other cleats, and when paired with Nike’s own NIKESKIN material, allows for a tight fit alongside that sturdiness. The Lunarbeast PROs also come in several different color options, which allows wearers to match their shoe color to their team’s.

PROS

  • Excellent stability and ankle support
  • Several color options
  • Durable and sturdy traction
  • Great for artificial turf

CONS

  • Not good for linemen
  • Narrow fit may not work for wide feet
  • Not so great for grass

Pricing

Depending on the color and size, the cleats can cost anywhere from $28 to $133.99.

Where to Buy

You can purchase these cleats on Amazon, where they’re ranked as a Best Seller.

Perfect For

Anyone who needs extra ankle support and any football position except for linemen.

The Nike Lunarbeast PROs don’t work well for linemen, which is why Nike created the Lunarbeast Elites. These cleats are tailor-made for linemen, linebackers, and defensive ends. These cleats are made with quality midfoot stability and heavy ankle support, giving the defensive players as much help as possible. There is also a wide selection of different styles and colors to match your team’s colors, but the price can vary a bit with the different styles and sizes you choose.

PROS

  • Great ankle support
  • Durable, can last for several games
  • Comfortable and flexible in spite of sturdiness
  • Large choice of styles

CONS

  • Price can become expensive for some sizes and styles
  • May be difficult for some to put on

Pricing

Depending on the style and size you choose, these cleats can cost anywhere between $$ and $$$.

Where to Buy

You can purchase these cleats on Amazon.

Perfect For

Defensive football positions like linemen, linebackers, and defensive ends. 

4. Under Armour Men's Highlight M.C. -Limited Edition Lacrosse Shoe

 

Under Armour Men's Highlight M.C. -Limited Edition Lacrosse Shoe
  • UA ClutchFit upper wraps your foot in a “second skin” of advantages for powerful support & an incredible feel
  • Lightweight material innovation forms to the contours of your foot, amping your joints & muscles to give you better...
  • Embroidered “critter” pattern

These Adidas cleats are lightweight but retain powerful traction when running thanks to the Kevlar-reinforced plate on the soles. Well-cushioned and breathable insides mean the cleats are comfortable to wear for hours. Plus, the cleats use a customizable lacing system that allows players to achieve the perfect fit specifically for their own feet.

PROS

  • Great traction on grass and turf
  • Fit well on wider feet
  • Breathable and comfortable
  • Amazing value for the price

CONS

  • Not the most exciting design
  • Less ankle support than other mid-cut cleats

Pricing

The price can vary for these cleats depending on your size, running anywhere from $$ all the way to $$$.

Perfect For

These shoes are great for players that want power and speed, particularly tight ends and linebackers.

Where to Buy

You can purchase these cleats on Amazon and take advantage of the Prime Wardrobe feature that allows free returns up to 7 days on some select items.

5. Reebok Men's Postal TCT Work Shoes USPS Approved Black 10 EE US

 

Sale
Reebok Men's Postal TCT Work Shoes USPS Approved Black 10 EE US
  • Genuine Black Leather Construction
  • Moisture Wicking Lining
  • Dual Density Polyurethane outsole

It can be hard to find a cleat that forms to your exact foot, though Reebok says they are able to do it. With their U-FORM footwear technology, Reebok’s shoes can form to the contours of your individual foot. Of course, the shoe needs to fit right to start with, but then you heat the shoe, lace it up, and then wait for the U-FORM technology to get to work.

PROS

  • Perfect fit
  • Breathable
  • Great support and solid stability

CONS

  • Heavier than other cleats
  • Outdated design

Pricing

These are highly affordable compared to other cleats on this list at $$.

Where to Buy

You can purchase these cleats on Amazon, where they qualify for Prime’s free 2-day shipping option.

Perfect For

Anyone who wants a customized fit for an extremely reasonable price.

Although this cleat model is no longer in production, the available shoes are still very worth purchasing. These Reeboks also offer custom-fit technology that allows the inside of the cleat to shape itself to your foot. Plus, its highly breathable and lightweight and even has an antimicrobial footbed to lessen heat and friction inside the cleat. The cleats are detachable, in fact, and you even get an extra set with your purchase. The detachable cleats give you better performance on grass, though they also make shoes less durable in the long run. The outsoles often fall apart after a lot of use, which can be an issue.

PROS

  • Detachable cleats
  • Custom-fit technology
  • Great stability
  • Flashy design

CONS

  • Not very durable
  • Sizing errs to the smaller side
  • Weak ankle support

Pricing

These cleats run from $$ to $$ depending on the design and size.

Where to Buy

You can purchase these shoes on Amazon.

Perfect For

Someone who wants stability and custom-fitted cleats that look great, and who is willing to overlook some major issues. 

With its stylish design and lightweight NIKESKIN, the Alpha Pro 2s are a beautiful cleat to behold. These cleats offer excellent grip on both turf and grass, but also give the wearer extra cushion in the heel for ultimate comfort. The cleats tend to be more on the heavy side, but if the shoe is fitted appropriately, it may feel lighter.

PROS

  • Very stylish
  • Comfortable and well-cushioned
  • Great grass and turf traction
  • Durable

CONS

  • Heavier than most cleats
  • Not breathable
  • On the narrow side

Pricing

These cleats can cost anywhere from $$ to $$$, depending on what size and design you choose.

Where to Buy

These shoes are available on Amazon, as well as through Nike’s own store.

Perfect For

Players who play any position.

For players who need speed, look no further than these cleats. They give players unique traction with the thin blades at the tip of the toe. This design allows wearers to tear into turf or grass to charge ahead faster. The shoes are flexible, but sturdy thanks to the flywire technology.

PROS

  • Unbelievable traction
  • Great for speed
  • Good for wider feet

CONS

  • Not very breathable
  • Lacks ankle support
  • Not very cushioned

Pricing

These cleats are available for anywhere from $$ to $$$, depending on your size.

Where to Buy

You can purchase these cleats on Nike’s website as well as on Amazon.

Perfect For

Players who need speed above anything else and also players with wider feet. 

9. adidas Unisex-Child Ace 16.4 FxG J Soccer Shoe

 

adidas Unisex-Child Ace 16.4 FxG J Soccer Shoe
  • Prime mesh upper provides a comfortable, sock-like fit so you can move with instinct to control the ball at high speed
  • Ultra-thin film on upper helps keep water and debris out
  • Move with high-speed control and stability on first- and second-generation artificial grass (long-bladed synthetic...

These cleats are lightweight and benefit any player who needs speed. Made for youth players, these are great cleats to grow into. Additionally, with its multidirectional grip, wearers are able to retain control while maximizing speed.

PROS

  • Excellent traction
  • Lightweight
  • Sturdy heel placement

CONS

  • Must wear quality socks
  • More expensive than other cleats with similar features

Pricing

These shoes can cost anywhere from $$$ up to $$$, depending on the wearer’s size.

Where to Buy

These are available on Adidas’ website and also on Amazon.

Perfect For

Players who need speed and lightweight cleats. 

10. Under Armour Kids Mens UA Highlight RM Jr Football (Little Kid/Big...

 

Under Armour Kids Mens UA Highlight RM Jr Football (Little Kid/Big...
  • The Under Armour® Kids UA Highlight RM Jr. Football will highlight the skill and speed you have on the field - no...

For younger players, it can be important to find cleats that support their still-growing bones. However, this can hamper the cleat’s flexibility. Luckily, with the UA Highlight RM cleats, you can get all the support you need without sacrificing flexibility.

PROS

  • UA ClutchFit gives powerful support
  • Advanced footbed for stability and comfort
  • Great traction on turf and grass

CONS

  • UK Sizes can be difficult to translate into American

Pricing

These cleats cost $$, a reasonable price for the quality.

Where to Buy

You can purchase these shoes from Dicks Sporting Goods’ online site or Amazon.com

Perfect For

Youth players who need flexibility and stability.

Comparison Table

Product

Our Rating

Details

Under Armour Men’s UA Highlight MC

Under Armour Men’s UA Highlight MC - best football cleats

Nike Men’s Lunarbeast PRO TD Football Cleat

Nike Men’s Lunarbeast PRO TD Football Cleat - best football cleats

Nike Men’s Force Lunarbeast Elite TD

Nike Men’s Force Lunarbeast Elite TD

adidas Originals Men's Freak x Carbon Mid Football Shoe

Adidas Performance Men’s Freak X Carbon Mid Football Shoe

Reebok Mens Black Leather Work Shoes Postal TCT Athletic Oxford

Reebok Pro Workhorse ATF Men’s Football Shoes

Reebok NFL Burner Speed 5/8 SD3

Reebok NFL Burner Speed 5/8 SD3

Men’s Nike Alpha Pro 2

Men’s Nike Alpha Pro 2

Nike Vapor Carbon Elite TD

Nike Vapor Carbon Elite TD

adidas Performance Kids' Goletto VI J Firm Ground Soccer Cleats

Adizero 5-Star 4.0 J Youth Football Cleats

UA Highlight RM Youth Football Cleats

UA Highlight RM Youth Football Cleats

The Verdict

For the best all-around cleat, the best option from this list is the Under Armour Men’s UA Highlight MC. It offers a high amount of flexibility even though it’s a high top cleat. With comfort and stability, the cleat can be used in just about any context or position. Of course, specialty positions may want to look elsewhere, but for just about any need that requires cleats, the Highlight MCs can give you the best experience around.

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