N.F.L.s Top 100 Players


The top 100 players in the N.F.L. is about as important as knowing what Joan Rivers thinks of what Jennifer Aniston is wearing on the red carpet, but everyone who watches the N.F.L. Regularly has a top 100 players (even if they haven’t organized it into a list yet).

Here is my list. My list is not interested in what players once were, but more of what they are now, and where they might be going based on my own opinions. I’m generally looking at the last two seasons so I’ll avoid some most rookies and most “one year wonders” (I’m looking at you Brandon Lloyd), but not all. This list is also not yet ranked 1-100, but it is ranked within the positions. I’ll have a final ranking of the players next week. I’m just having you guys help me make sure I don’t have any glaring omissions.

Let me know what you think.

Consider this my rough draft and let me know what players I’m way off on, and what players I nailed.  I’ll rank the players over this next week with explanations. Players are organized by categories and the order they are in is the order that they will be ranked when this list is final next week (except for offensive linemen that’s not final yet).

Quarterbacks (9)

Tom Brady, Patriots

Peyton Manning, Colts

Drew Brees, Saints

Aaron Rodgers, Packers

Ben Roethelisberger, Steelers

Philip Rivers, Chargers

Michael Vick, Eagles

Eli Manning, Giants-I could argue until I’m blue in the face why Eli should be so high, but I’ll just say put the interceptions last year aside for a minute and look how his completion percentages, yardage, touchdowns, and wins rank with the top quarterbacks since his magical superbowl run in 2007. You might be surprised how well he stacks up statistically, add to that he’s never had a losing season as a full time starter and you have a top 10 quarterback

Matt Ryan, Falcons-this is more of where I think he’s going than what he is so far. He’s an excellent quarterback and he’s more of a winner than a stat guy. This was my last addition to the list the 100th player I wrote down.

Running backs (11)

Adrian Peterson, Vikings

Chris Johnson, Titans

Jamaal Charles, Chiefs-5.9 yards per carry two years ago, 6.4 yards per carry last year. Jamaal Charles is the third best running back in the league right now. He’s explosive in the run game, can catch the football, has return ability. What a good player.

Maurice Jones Drew, Jaguars-He’s the best all around back in the league. Good inside runner, outside runner. Makes big plays, good in the pass gaming (as both a receiver and a blocker). A standout on special teams when he’s given those opportunities. He can also carry the ball a ton and not see his numbers drop drastically. What a good player.

Steven Jackson, Rams-If this guy could stay completely healthy for a season and had surrounding weapons his numbers could be mind-boggling.

Daren McFadden, Raiders-He really broke out last year and is pure talent is undeniable. Over 1600 all purpose yards and 10 touchdowns in only 13 games played. One of the best pass/rush combo backs in the league. 5.2 yards per carry last season.

Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens

LeSean McCoy, Eagles

Michael Turner, Falcons-I like the bruising running backs who can take a pounding and give it back. I considered having him higher, but opted against it.

Arian Foster, Texans (gotta give him props even if it was for one year. He’s hot right now and with the surrounding weapons could be a good player again this year). The difference between a player like Foster and Lloyd is age. Lloyd will be 30 years old next year and last year averaged 2.0 more yards per reception than in any other season and had as many yards than his two best previous seasons.

Vonta Leach, Texan

Wide Receiver (14)

Andre Johnson, Texans

Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals

Roddy White, Falcons

Calvin Johnson, Lions

Reggie Wayne, Colts

Hakeem Nicks, Giants-Last year he was top five in yards per game, receptions per game, Touchdowns (not per game), plays over 20 yards per game. He has to improve on his inconsitent hands, but he can be a possession wide reciver, a big play threat, a red-zone target, and he’s also a willing blocker.

Greg Jennings, Packers

Vincent Jackson, San Diego Chargers

Brandon Marshall, Dolphins

Wes Welker, Patriots

Desean Jackson, Philadelphia Eagles-I’m knocking him a bit for the things he can’t or doesn’t do. Go over the middle, block. Clearly he’s very explosive.

Percy Harvin, Vikings-If it wasn’t for his migraines this would be an even easier decision.

Steve Smith, New York Giants

Sydney Rice, Minnesota Vikings

Offensive Linemen (13)

Joe Thomas, Cleveland

Jake Long, Miami Dolphins

Da’BrickaShaw Ferguson

Nick Mangold, Jets

Ryan Clady, Broncos

Chris Snee, Giants

Jahri Evans, Saints

Jordan Gross, Panthers

Ryan Kalil, Panthers

Jeff Saturday, Colts

Michael Roos, Titans

Alex Mack, Cleveland Browns

Brian Waters, Chiefs

Tight End (8)

Antonio Gates, San Diego Chargers

Jason Witten, Dallas Cowboys

Dallas Clark, Indianapolis Colts

Vernon Davis, 49ers (16.3 yards per reception with THAT quarterback play. Sign me up)

Brandon Pettigrew, Lions-His arrow is just pointing up. Catches everything and can block to boot.

Chris Cooley, Washington Redskins-always been a Cooley fan with his versatility

Tony Gonzalez-I’ll give props to the big guy. I’m breaking my not taking into consideration their career rule here though.

Heath Miller-A throwback player. Clutch player. He’s also a plus blocker for his position and can catch. Criminally underrated.

Defensive Linemen (16)

Julius Peppers-The best two way defensive end in the league

Justin Tuck, DE, New York Giants-Tuck is the second best two way defensive end in the entire league and I take that into serious consideration.

Dwight Freeney, DE, Colts

Mario Williams, DE, Texans

Robert Mathis, DE, Colts-time he gets his props. What a dynamic pass rusher he is, nearly as feared as Dwight Freeney.

Nndamukong Suh, DT, Lions

Kevin Williams, DT, Vikings

Kyle Williams, DT, Buffalo Bills

Jared Allen, Vikings

Jay Ratliff, NT, Dallas Cowboys

Haloti Ngata, DL, Baltimore Ravens

Justin Smith, 49ers

Vince Wilfork, New England Patriots

Trent Colt, Eagles

Darnell Docket, Cardinals

Richard Seymour, Oakland Raiders

Linebackers (14)

James Harrison, OLB, Steelers

DeMarcus Ware, Cowboys

Patrick Willis, ILB, 49ers

Clay Matthews, OLB, Packers

London Fletcher, Redskins

Terrell Suggs, Ravens

Jerod Mayo, ILB, Patriots

Brian Urlacher, Bears

Tamba Hali, OLB, Chiefs-I had him higher, but when I thought about all around game play, I brought him down a notch. Still a very plus player. If he can improve some of the finer points of the game, I’ll have him higher next year.

Lamaar Woodley, Pittsburgh Steelers

Ray Lewis, Baltimore Ravens

Jon Beason, Panthers

Stephen Tulloch, Titans

Cameron Wake, Dolphins

Defensive Backs (14)

Darrelle Revis, New York Jets

Nnadmi Asmougha, Oakland Raiders

Charles Woodson, Green Bay Packers

Ed Reed, Baltimore Ravens

Asante Samuel, Philadelphia Eagles

Troy Polmalu, Pittsburgh Steelers

Champ Bailey, Broncos

Jonathan Joseph, Cincinnati Bengals

Brent Grimes, Atlanta Falcons

Antoine Winfield, Vikings-he’s not the greatest cover guy, but he’s an all around player maker who can line up on the outside or in the slot, come after the quarterback, and is a force in the run game.

Tramon Williams, Green Bay Packers

Leon Hall, Cincinnati Bengals

Eric Berry, Kansas City Chiefs-I’m making an exception here. I like to see players do it for more than one year, so I’ll have him a little lower for now, but what a heck of a player.

Louis Delmas, Detroit Lions-Pains me to put him in over my man crush Adrian Wilson, but the word has to get out about this guy.

Kick Returner (1)

Devin Hester, Chicago Bears-Boom goes the Dynamite.

Why Brandon Lloyd doesn’t make this list (guessing that’s the most controversial play)

Follow us on twitter @NFLmocks and like us on facebook.