Best Call of Duty players of 2021: Top 5 ranked

best cod players 2021Call of Duty League

The second season of the Call of Duty League saw a litany of insane plays, high-octane moments, and some serious cash handed out. But which CDL players were the very best? Here are our top 5 CoD players of 2021.

The upper echelon of Call of Duty competition seems to only get more and more impressive each season, and 2021 was no different. While Atlanta FaZe had a truly dominant year to help towards securing their dynasty status, teams like Toronto Ultra and Minnesota RØKKR had their share of moments in the limelight, too.

That said, certain players just stood out above the others. Every year, some players have a bigger impact on the map, or come seemingly out of nowhere to become dominant forces in the CDL.

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You can also check out our rankings for the best League of Legends players, best Valorant players, and best Warzone players here.

Here is our list of the five best CoD players in 2021.

5. Jamie ‘Insight’ Craven

Toronto Ultra's Insight playing Call of DutyToronto Ultra
Insight burst onto the scene, completely turning the tide for Toronto Ultra.

Insight started the 2021 Cold War season on Toronto Ultra’s bench, but his addition to the starting roster was met with immediate MVP-calibre performances.

He provided the spark that ignited Toronto Ultra’s Stage 2 Major win, and made them a formidable force throughout the remainder of the 2021 season, including with runner-up medals at the Stage 5 Major and Call of Duty Championship.

Insight’s rookie year was one for the ages, and he has firmly made his name as one of the most fearsome players in the CDL.

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4. Jovel ‘Cellium’ McArthur

Cellium Atlanta FaZe CDLActivision
Cellium has often gone under-appreciated as a member of this Atlanta FaZe side — but he’s no doubt been one of the best in the game.

Despite teaming with a group of players that will no doubt go down as some of the greatest of all time, Cellium still found ways to stand out in the CDL in 2021, especially in the latter stages of the season.

As Atlanta FaZe’s flex player, Cellium was proficient in just about any scenario and with any weapon in hand. He was instrumental in FaZe’s success, especially from Stage 4 onwards, taking over in the respawn modes as well as being the annoying opponent that other CDL teams have come to fear in Search & Destroy.

He finished the season with an overall K/D of 1.15, short only of his teammate Simp, making him one of the most efficient slayers in the league.

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3. Cameron ‘Cammy’ McKilligan

Toronto Ultra's Cammy with a Scottish flagActivision
Cammy really came into his own in 2021, making his case for being the best flex player in the game.

Scottish star Cammy had been a solid performer in previous years, but his Cold War season was absolutely sensational. One of the very few flex players who could truly match Cellium both in terms of skill, adaptability, and pure gunny, he was a constant thorn in the side of his CDL opponents.

His partnership with Insight made for one of the most formidable assault rifle duos in Call of Duty, while his ability to clutch up and put on a show — such as his insane 4-piece against FaZe at Champs — was truly astounding, helping keep Toronto one step ahead of the competition.

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2. Tyler ‘aBeZy’ Pharris

Atlanta FaZe AbezyCall of Duty League
ABeZy has become a phenomenal talent.

One half of the Tiny Terrors duo, aBeZy is often regarded as the best entry SMG in the game, and that’s hard to dispute.

His ability to break a hill, take down multiple enemies and live to hold the objective is second to none, while his first-blood capabilities made Search & Destroy a walk in the park for Atlanta FaZe. Few other SMGs in the league could come close to competing with him in close-quarters combat. Fortunately for FaZe, his best competition is actually his teammate.

1. Chris ‘Simp’ Lehr

Simp playing in the Call of Duty LeagueCall of Duty League
Simp was undoubtedly the best player and MVP of the 2021 CDL season.

It’s hard to look past Simp when debating the best Call of Duty player in recent seasons, and the Cold War year in 2021 was proof of that. He finished the season ranked number one for overall K/D at 1.17, and it’s hard to recall a single map where Simp wasn’t a standout player.

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Recognized almost unanimously as the best CoD player in 2021, Simp was the CDL MVP this year, leading the league in multiple stat lines across all modes and never slowing down. Alongside aBeZy, you may never find a more dominant SMG duo than the Tiny Terrors, and don’t expect that form to disappear in 2022.

The question is, can Simp help lead Atlanta FaZe to a similarly successful year? With three Major championships and a world championship ring, it’s hard to imagine these guys getting even better.

It’s hard to look past these five individuals as the greatest Call of Duty players of 2021. While names like Arcitys, Standy, HyDra and Shotzzy had great seasons — especially impressive for rookies HyDra and Standy — these five were simply too good, and on the two best teams in the game.

Whether their form continues into the 2022 Vanguard season remains to be seen, but it’s safe to say Simp and aBeZy will still be the ones to beat once the year kicks off.

Be sure to check out the rest of Dexerto’s Best of 2021 series, for the best players, influencers and games of the year.