NFL Top 100 Analysis Finale: 10-1

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We have finally made it to the final ten names on the NFL Top 100 countdown, it’s been a long road and a long wait to see who the NFL players have voted to be the ten best players in the game today. Without further delay, here are the top 10 players in the NFL going into the 2012 season, enjoy!

10. Patrick Willis

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Can’t argue with this at all. I said a couple years ago that Patrick Willis would claim the throne of best middle linebacker in the game once Ray Lewis decided to call it a career, we didn’t even have to wait that long. I don’t think Ray with any problem handing over the reins to P- WIllie, if you look at the way Willis plays, he looks like a young Ray Lewis. Kinda creepy in a way. The dude is a three down linebacker, he is a force in stopping the run and is a guy you better locate in coverage or he will pick it and take it to the house. He anchored the middle of the best defense in football in 2011, I expect more of the same from him and his defensive unit in 2012 and I expect him to climb a few spots on this list next year.

9. Haloti Ngata

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It’s not often you can find a space eating defensive tackle that can also collapse the pocket and rush the passer, that’s why Haloti Ngata is hands down the best defensive tackle in the game. At 6’4 340 pounds takes up a lot of space to say the least. The man commands double teams on almost every play and he still can’t be moved. Calling Ngata a hoss doesn’t do him justice at all, I’ve seen him on film running down running backs and receivers down field, that’s just not fair.

8. Adrian Peterson

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When you talk about running backs and speed to power combinations Adrian Peterson is right near the top of the list. The only running back in the same class when it comes to that blend of size, power and speed is Bo Jackson. They just don’t make them like this often folks, they are freaks of nature. As a tackler you have to pick your poison when it comes to AP, he can either run over you or flat out run past you. It’s scary. For a guy his size to be able to stick his foot in the ground and get up to top speed in about four or five steps is freaky. Best running back in the league bar none.

7.Larry Fitzgerald

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Like the picture above states, without question Larry Fitzgerald is one of the best wide receivers in the game today. Watching him during his days at Pittsburgh were so much fun, he was so dominant and he made it look easy. Things haven’t changed much in the NFL for Fitz, even though he has lacked a quarterback for majority of his career he has still put up great numbers. Now with Michael Floyd opposite him in Arizona I can only imagine the filthy things he is going to do to defenses, now only if they could get a quarterback….

6. DeMarcus Ware

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Has anyone figured out a way to stop this guy? When you constantly face double and triple teams week in and week out and consistently post double digit sack numbers, that means you are a beast. That’s Demarcus Ware and that’s why he is the best pass rusher in the game today. In 2011 Ware put up 19 sacks, which normally would be good enough to lead the league, but since Jared Allen put up a super human 22 sacks it was only good enough for second. Ware is a monster and going into a game you can count on him getting to your quarterback at least once because that’s how good he is. If he keeps this up, you can count on him being in Canton when it’s all said and done.

5. Darrelle Revis

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Welcome to Revis Island. There is a no fly zone on Revis Island, so if you are a wide receiver, be prepared for a long day. If you are a quarterback, don’t even bother throwing Revis’ direction, better yet don’t even look his direction. Revis is the definition of a shutdown corner, as he draws the opponent’s #1 receiver every week and he proceeds to lock them up. You name them he has probably covered them and dominated them, Revis is as talented as they come.

4. Tom Brady

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Now this was a shocker. Tom Brady finished #1 on this countdown a year ago and in 2011 He passed for over 5,000 yards and played in another Super Bowl, but he slid 3 spots? Doesn’t exactly add up now does it? In my opinion, Tom Brady is still the #1 player in the NFL until someone dethrones him and I don’t think the players above him did anything to dethrone him in 2011.

3. Calvin Johnson

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They call him Megatron. Why? Because the guy isn’t human. This guy is built like he was created on a video game. 6’6, 235 pounds, 40 inches plus on the vertical and can run a sub 4.4 forty. F-R-E-A-K. That’s just absurd man. He is the most physically gifted wide receiver the game has ever seen and I’m not sure who even comes in second on that list. He became a more complete receiver in 2011 and the numbers he put reflects that. If you ever try to single cover him, he will make you pay. Hell he will make you pay even if you double and triple cover him. I don’t think the guy can be stopped, you can only hope to contain him.

2. Drew Brees

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Breesus. Hard to believe that the guy who shattered Dan Marino’s record for yards in a single season is sitting at home right now without a contract. Crazy talk right? The guy who jump started the franchise, brought a Super Bowl to New Orleans and is the face of the franchise hasn’t got paid yet…. give me a break. Someone needs to put a call in to the brass in NOLA and tell them to wake the hell up and pay this man. Any amount of money he is asking for isn’t enough. Drew Brees can’t get a contract, but Darrelle Revis is talking about holding for the SECOND time, blows my mind man. You might not find a classier and hard working quarterback in the league then Drew Brees and he doesn’t have a contract right now. Unreal.

Well that only leaves one more guy, I think you guys can guess who it is….

1. Aaron Rodgers

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The Champ is here. He has the belt to prove it. Aaron Rodgers takes home the crown as the #1 player in the NFL as voted by the players in 2012. It’s a well deserved honor by A-Rod though I had him second to Tom Brady on my ballot. You can’t argue with a guy who had a touchdown to interception ratio of 45 to 6,  MERCY. Rodgers was hot as fish grease in 2011 and it’s scary about the kind of numbers we could see from him going forward. It’s funny to think about the whole Brett Favre controversy Green Bay had to deal with and people were worried about Aaron Rodgers taking over after he retired, I think they are satisfied with what they got. Aaron Rodgers commands one of the most dynamic offenses in the league and he makes it look so easy at times it is comical. The aspect of A-Rod’s game that makes him so fun to watch is that he has the ability to tuck it and run and move around and buy time. That’s something guys like Tom Brady and Peyton Manning both lack. We are talking Michael Vick or Cameron Newton type of athletic ability, but we are talking about enough athletic ability to make you worry as defensive coordinator and to make you second guess yourself if you are a defensive player. Congrats A-Rod, in 2012 you’re #1 sir.

Well folks, that concludes my analysis of the NFL Top 100 Players countdown, I hope you guys enjoyed my articles and my opinions. I hope you guys continue to read what I put up on the site and as always I welcome your feedback and opinions. If you want to discuss the Top 100 or anything else I write about, leave comments or hit me up on twitter @The_Lort_Got !

NFL Top 100 Analysis: 20-11

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We are coming down the home stretch of my NFL Top 100 breakdowns, numbers 10-1 will shortly follow this installment.

20. Ray Lewis

Reverend Ray. It was a given he was on this list. If you have followed football you know what Ray Lewis has done for the game and what he still brings to the table at the age of 37. It’s absolute incredible how long he has played the game at a high level and has missed little to no time. In 2011 I saw Ray Lewis on the sideline for the first ever with an injury. It just didn’t feel right not seeing #52 out their manning the middle of that Baltimore defense. Ray is one of my all time favorites and despite missing some time in 2011 he still was ranked in the top 20 players in the game today.

19. Troy Polamalu

You have to worry about the quiet ones. Troy Polamalu doesn’t talk much, he instead lets his play do the talking for him. We hear you loud and clear Troy. When you think of playmakers on the defensive side of the ball, the guy wearing #43 for the Steelers has to be on your short list of the best in the game. Polamalu absolutely does it all for the Pittsburgh defense as he roams from sideline to sideline. One second he is walked up on the edge on the line of scrimmage then the next he is dropping into coverage. Wherever he goes, you better have about four sets of eyes on him at all times, and make sure your chin strap is buckled.

18. LeSean McCoy

They call him Shady. When it comes to elusive running backs it’s harder to think one who is more elusive then McCoy. Just when you think you got him backed into a corner he breaking out to daylight going 60 yards for a touchdown. He is the definition of lightning in a bottle, except this kind of lightning does strike in the same place. Shady gets it done in so many ways for Philadelphia’s offense and he has become one of the league’s best running backs.

17. Justin Smith

Brute strength. Just an absolute animal, that is what Justin Smith. I feel sorry for whoever have to lineup across from this guy because he is going to take you on the ride of your life. Smith was one of the key pieces in that 2011 San Francisco defense and he pitched a tent in opposing offenses’ backfields. Having to deal with this guy alone is unfair, but when you add guys like Aldon Smith, Patrick Willis and NaVorro Bowman around him…. Yeah, that’s a problem.

16. Ed Reed

Edward Reed. Where do I even begin with this guy? The guy is a definition of a ball hawk and he hits like a runaway train. He is one the best to ever do it and I put him right up there with Ronnie Lott as one the best ever. It’s Ronnie, Ed……………………… Everyone else, period. Like Ray Lewis, it seems like the guy has been playing forever and he has been doing it at a high level. Injuries are starting to catch up with Ed at this age, but I fully expect him and Ray to walk away from the game at the same time. I think they both have one more season left in them.

15. Andre Johnson

You can’t cover #80. That’s what I scream every Sunday when I watch Houston play. I scream that because it’s true, does anyone know how to cover that guy? It seems the only way you lock down Andre Johnson is by having him sidelined with an injury as we saw in 2011. Once Johnson recovered from his hamstring injury it was back to work as usual. Before his injury Johnson looked like he was on his way to another Pro Bowl season, hopefully he is 100% going into 2012 so Houston can make a Super Bowl run.

14. Jimmy Graham

Another tight end in that Tony Gonzales/ Antonio Gates mold. This kid is a stud, and he announced his presence with authority in 2011. The guy is simply a mismatch nightmare for a defense and with his basketball background he is able to box out and go up and get the ball on anybody who is covering him. When you talk about Jimmy Graham, you most likely end up talking about Rob Gronkowski as well. The debate for who the best tight end in football is too close to call, and as I stated earlier I think they gap is minimal. I for one was shocked by the significant gap between the two on this countdown.

13. Jared Allen

Mr. Rodeo got the love he deserved this year on this countdown. Allen jumped up 67 spots from 2011 after recording 22 sacks this past season and coming up just .5 sack short of tying the record for most ever in a season. Jared Allen has been one of the elite rushers in the league for awhile now and I was shocked he wasn’t shown more respect last year on this list. If Brett Favre and Bubba Franks hadn’t played dead and allowed Michael Strahan to get a sack Jared Allen would have the record right now, that’s criminal. Allen had to work for every sack he got unlike Strahan that year.

12. Maurice Jones- Drew

This guy may be pound for pound the best football player in the game today. When you look at what Jones- Drew has done in Jacksonville with the mediocre talent that surrounds him year in and year out, I don’t see how you can’t respect the guy as one the best in game. He is the entire offense for Jacksonville, teams know he is going to get the football and he STILL produces at a high level, it’s absolutely incredible. I will never forget the year Jones- Drew came out of UCLA, my dad told me with absolute certainty that he would be a better running back in the league then Reggie Bush, hard to dispute that. Well done pops.

11.Terrell Suggs

They call him T- Sizzle and he claims to be from Ball So Hard University. Sizzle had himself a career year in 2011, I think it’s safe to say he “balled out”. Unfortunately we won’t be seeing Sizzle in action for awhile after rupturing his Achilles in a pick up game this off season. He insists that we will see him at some point and time this year, so it will be interesting to see how healthy he will be if he does indeed make a comeback in 2012.

Just one more installment to go folks, stay tuned!

NFL Top 100 Analysis: 30-21

No time for introductions,  lets go folks.

30. Ben Roethlisberger

Giants fans are going to hate me for saying it, but I think Big Ben’s ranking ahead of Eli is justified. I think instead of comparing Eli to Peyton I think they should be comparing Eli to Ben. I think it’s a much better debate and a lot more realistic. Despite not having the gaudy statistics a lot of the top quarterbacks have, Ben does have plenty of the most important statistic of all, wins. This guy just finds a way to win ball games and the dude is tough as hell and a fiery competitor. I don’t think their is a tougher quarterback in the league then Ben Roethlisberger and I can say that with confidence. The dude plays thru every ailment and still gives his team a chance to win when it comes down to it. You have to admire that about a QB, especially one who is mobile and moves around as much as he does.

29. James Harrison

This is one scary individual man. One guy I would never want to get into a staring contest with. When you line up across from this guy, you have your hands full all day. Just like Ndamukong Suh, he has developed a bad rep, but forget all that, dude is a freaking animal on the football field. His stature makes him a nightmare for offensive tackles because he can get great leverage and he strong as hell. That’s a recipe for disaster if you’re a quarterback. Think the teams who passed on him in the draft and cut him are kicking themselves? I think so.

28. Frank Gore

*Yawns* Ho-Hum another University of Miami player on this list. I guess they are decent at putting players in the NFL. I think it’s safe to say Gore won’t be the last one we see on this list. Gore is in the perfect situation out in San Francisco in Jim Harbaugh’s West Coast offense and he absolutely gets it DONE. He absolutely makes it happen for that offense and his success helped the light bulb finally come on for Alex Smith. Just get the ball in this guys hands and watch him work.

27. Clay Matthews

The Clay Maker. When you are looking for a outside linebacker in the 3-4 scheme, you look for a guy that can be a force in the run game, drop into various coverages and when he has to put his hand on the ground and rush the passer. Clay Matthews can do all of that and then some. The dude is a freak of an athlete and he is only going to continue to get better. As a quarterback you better look up on on every play and find where #52 is or he is going to make you pay. In 2011 we didn’t see the sack numbers we saw from him the year before, but that didn’t stop him from being ranked highly again by the players. Early on in his career Clay Matthews already has the respect from his fellow players.

26. Julius Peppers

I call this guy the trend setter. Ever since Julius Peppers broke into the league and set it on fire, every scout and GM is trying to find the next Julius Peppers. 6’7 290 pound defensive ends who can run and terrorize the passer don’t grow on trees and I think the closest thing we have seen to Peppers is Mario Williams. That shows you how often they come around so when you have a chance to get one, you take it. Julius Peppers is the epitome of a 4-3 defensive end, he has every tool when it comes to rushing the quarterback and he holds up very well in the run game. Peppers’ motor never stops even if the play is run away from him, as he has shown a knack to running down plays from behind. You would think running screens at a guy like Peppers would help to slow him down right? Wrong. Peppers has also shown the savvy to read screens and pick them off and take them the other direction. Dude is just a nightmare to game plan and play against .

25. Arian Foster

I’m fortunate enough to have seen this guy play live in college, now he plays for my hometown team. I say it every time I watch him run the ball, he is the smoothest runner at the running back position in the NFL. Arian is a silky smooth runner and it looks so easy has he does it. He is patient with finding the holes and when he does he sticks his foot in the ground and explodes thru it to day light. From undrafted to becoming a Pro Bowler, I love seeing a guy prove his critics wrong. Foster proved he wasn’t a fluke by following up his breakout year with another solid year. Houston rewarded him with a nice contract extension following 2011, so now maybe he can treat the big boys upfront out to a nice dinner. I can’t wait to see what Arian has in store for us in 2012, I am excited to see him play.

24. Jason Pierre- Paul

Let me tell you how much of a freak this kid is. He didn’t take up football until his junior year of high school, played two years of junior college football, one year at USF….. First round pick. Now tell me how often that has happened. This kid is an athletic freak and he is STILL learning the game. He is a “baby” still when it comes to football and he is already an All- Pro and a Super Bowl Champ. Scary is the word I use a lot talking about JPP. This is just the tip of the iceberg, and it’s a big ass iceberg. Buckle up and enjoy the ride folks.

23. Wes Welker

Everybody has been talking about the dropped pass by Welker in the Super Bowl. It’s a catch we’ve seen Wes make time and time again though it could of been placed better by Tom. Regardless it doesn’t change my opinion or his peers’ opinion of Wes as a player. The guy is hell to cover and he led the NFL in catches in 2011. Welker is one of the toughest receivers in the NFL to cover despite being so small in stature. I’ve said this before and will say this again, Tom Brady and Wes Welker were a match made in heaven. As soon as I heard they were trading for him, I knew it was going to be a problem for the rest of the league.

22. Ray Rice

Seems like big things come in small packages. That’s Ray Rice in a nutshell. At 5’8 Rice is one of the smallest running backs in the NFL, but he is also one of the most dynamic and productive. I had the chance to watch Rice at Rutgers and after watching him I thought he had the chance to be another Maurice Jones-Drew. A small running back who is a bowling ball of a runner and displays great balance when hit. Rice hasn’t disappointed at all and is one of the more complete backs in the league as he is often split out wide often by Baltimore. The offense runs thru Ray Rice despite what people want to say about Joe Flacco, without Rice that offense doesn’t go anywhere.

21. Rob Gronkowski

GRONK! Man I can’t even say enough about this guy. He is the total package as a tight end. The dude is always open, has great hands and gets plenty of YAC, and has a nose for the end zone. He does all of that on top of being a hell of a blocker as well. The dude is nasty as hell in the run game and that often goes unnoticed due to what he did as a receiver. You want an example? Check out what he did to Terrell Suggs. Gronk approaches the game with an old school mentality and I think that’s why I tend to like him more then Jimmy Graham when it comes to that debate. I see Gronk as a more complete tight end even though he is not nearly as athletic as Graham. Either way you go you don’t lose though.

Got one more to get caught up, will probably double dip tomorrow with the new rankings coming out.

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