July 08, 2007

Football: Player Rankings

I like football and I haven't posted in awhile so here we go:  My first annual (wait that doesn't make sense it's the first...it can't be annual)NFL Player Rankings...starting with defense.

I'll get to offensive players at some point...

Defensive End:

1.  Julius Peppers:  He's an all around player.  He can rush the passer, he can play the run, he's quick enough to drop into coverage.

2. Jason Taylor: Same reasons as above.  Peppers gets the edge because he's younger.

3. Alex Brown: Not quite as multi-faceted as the above guys; you don't see him in coverage, but he is capable of rushing the passer and playing the run.  Good player.

4. Will Smith: The ends are the only significant strong points on the Saints defense.  This is the better of the two.

5. Osi Umenyiora:  He plays for the Giants (unfortunately), but this guy can play football.  On a team loaded with good defensive ends (Mathias Kiwanuka, Justin Tuck, and Strahan can all play), Umenyiora is the best. 

Won't see on my list: Dwight Freeney: I don't have anything major against the guy; he's a good player.  But he isn't even the best end on his team.  Despite his size, Robert Mathis is a better run stopper and also a good pass rusher. 

Defensive Tackle:

1. Pat Williams: The best run stopper in the league.

2. John Henderson: Stroud can play too, but this guy is the better player.  Good run stopper, with height to bat down passes.  Good combination.

3. Vince Wilfork: He's a Patriot unfortunately, but this is the best 3-4 nose tackle in the league. 

4. Kevin Williams: It seems strange to have two tackles from one team, but these guys are great.  This is the guy who penetrates and gets into the backfield.  Another good run stopper and a solid pass rusher with excellent quickness for the position.  Along with Antoine Winfield, these guys are the reason it is all but impossible to run on the Vikings.

5. Kelly Gregg: Where would the Ravens be without this guy?  This guy holds everything up, and lets his teammates make the plays.  Damned good nose tackle.

Won't see on my list: Richard Seymour: He's severly overrated (I used to be guilty of it too).  He isn't really a major playmaker and he takes plays off. 


1. Adalius Thomas: I love multi-faceted players and this is as multi-faceted as they come.  He's capable of playing on the line, as a linebacker, and can even see limited action as a safety.  That is an incredible player right there.  He's a smart player, with an amazing combination of speed and size.  That is what makes a great player.

2. DeMarcus Ware: Excellent pass rusher who is also solid in coverage.  He's a good tackler, with the ability to be a playmaker.

3. Shawn Merriman: The best pass rusher in the game.

4. Brian Urlacher:  Good coverage man, and he's finally living up to the hype. 

5. Jonathan Vilma: Another good cover guy.  Undersized for a 3-4 and out of position, but it is to his credit that he is still a very good player.  I expect he'll perform even better in his second year in the new defense.

Won't see on my list: Ray Lewis: He's visibly slowing down, and he isn't the best linebacker on his team even with Thomas gone.


1. Terence Newman: Most people will disagree with me.  But Newman is the best cover man.  He doesn't take risks; he justs plays solid.  He can play the run too.

2. Champ Bailey: Finally living up to the hype.  Before this year, his gambles weren't paying off as much as they could.  He's here becasue he is a risk taker, but talent wise he is the best.

3. Rashean Mathis: This guy can play.  Good cover man with playmaking ability.

4. Nnamdi Asomugha: Big corner.  Just a good player who had a big year last year.  I expect he'll keep it up.

5. Chris McAlister: Another big corner.  He's slowing down.  A few years ago he would have been up near the top. 

Won't see on my list: DeAngelo Hall: THE. MOST. OVERRATED PLAYER. IN. THE. LEAGUE.  A gambler who takes pitiful angles to the ball.  He got beat by Hines Ward for a touchdown on a catch and run of over 60 yards on a play where Ward lost his shoe.  Hall is one of the fastest players in the league, and for him to get beat by a reciever as slow as Ward should tell you all you need to know about his angles.


1. Ed Reed: A monster playmaker who can play both safety positions. 

2. Adrian Wilson: An awesome, multi-faceted safety with the ability to cover and play the run.  He is also the best pass rusher as a defensive back in the league.

3. Brian Dawkins: Slowing down, but he's still got it.  It is a shame he plays for the Eagles.  Good cover man, and an able blitzer.  He's smart and knows his way around the football field.

4. Kerry Rhodes: Just a very solid player.  He's one of only two good players in that secondary, but he's going to become a monster.

5. (Edited from original...I made a mistake.  It has been fixed with this) Bob Sanders: A hitter and a playmaker.  Two things turned the Colts defense around in the playoffs, more trust in the scheme, and Bob Sanders.

Won't see on my list: Sean Taylor.  He's not bad, but he isn't a top safety.  Honestly, he isn't too far out, but of the guys considered elite safeties I think he's the furthest.


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