The NFL Top 100 List was finalized yesterday. There were certainly some respectable selections, but also some head scratchers that make you think, “Really?”
Rodgers vs. Brady
According to the NFL players, Tom Brady is not only the best quarterback in football, but he is also the outright best player from a season ago. A few weeks ago, Mike Sando created a list of what he and dozens of analysts and coaches around the league believed to be the best of the best. On that list, Tom was placed in the top five, yes, but he was not number one. In fact, I don’t even think he was number two.
It’s mind-boggling to wrap your head around the fact that back-to-back reigning MVP of the league Aaron Rodgers wasn’t the top-rated player at his position. Not all time, but from last season? Rodgers was nearly perfect after the Packers’ week one shock when they fell to the Saints in blowout fashion. Aaron told the Packer faithful to relax as he always does, went back to practice, and put-up numbers so strong, that he secured his second consecutive MVP season. However, this was not enough to put him above the immortal Tom Brady for the 2021 season.
Perhaps the disrespect to Rodgers here has something to do with his playoff performance, which is understandable. However, Brady was eliminated before the championship game as well, and did not have a better season than Aaron in the regular season, so the rating just doesn’t make a whole lot of sense. The simple fact that the Packers gunslinger tossed just FOUR interceptions last season is unbelievable. The guy simply does not put the ball in harm’s way, and if anyone is going to make the catch, it will be someone with a big G on his helmet.
Brady on the other hand threw twelve picks, and while I’m not trying to discredit anything Tom has done throughout his career or even last season, it’s hard for me to see that then look back at Rodgers’ gaudy numbers, and make the assessment that Brady had the better season is a better player at this point.
In this upcoming campaign, it will be extremely interesting to see Aaron without his top wideout Devante Adams, and Tom with a revamped receiving core with Julio Jones and Chris Godwin back in the fold for Tampa. I certainly see a big year for the Bucs, and they are actually my pick to hold the #1 seed going into the postseason.
Trent Williams Undervalued?
Another confusing placement was San Francisco 49ers left tackle Trent Williams. Williams is religiously known as the best offensive lineman in football, and it’s not particularly close. What makes him elite and estranged from anybody else is his ability to move on the line pre-snap. It’s outlandish to see a six foot five three hundred eighteen-pound man run from side to side and essentially become the lead blocker for whoever is rushing, whether it’s at left tackle, right tackle, or right guard, it doesn’t matter.
Williams being ranked at fourteen is absurd to me, as I thought he was a top ten player in this league after last season ended, without a doubt. With that being said, I think being the highest rated at his position is a great look for the league’s players because he is THE guy you want blocking for you with the game on the line.
All About The Flash
The NFL in today’s era is all about the flashy positions. The skill positions, which are quarterback, running back, wide receiver, cornerback, safety. But we tend to forget that if these quarterbacks and running backs didn’t have time to throw or lanes to run through, they wouldn’t be nearly as good.
For years now, the New York Giants have had a woeful offensive line, and multiple backs to come in and go out of their system. Saquon Barkley came out of Penn State in 2018 as an elusive player, a playmaker that could run by anyone and make anyone miss. However, four seasons in, his rookie season has been his best one thus far, as the former Nittany Lion has been plagued by injuries. The Giants haven’t found guys upfront to block well consistently, and Barkley has felt the effects.
On the other hand, teams such as New Orleans and Indianapolis have done it right, and their highly skilled running backs have been very thankful. Alvin Kamara is a perennial Pro Bowler, and Jonathan Taylor just was placed as the fifth-best player in the league. Guys like Trent Williams, Quenton Nelson, and Terron Armstead don’t come around very often, and we have to pay mind to them and give them their credit in the grand scape when we rank them overall.