Like I do every year once the official player’s countdown is fully released, I wanted to make my own top 100 list. There is a serious misconception about the voting process. While opinions are heavily based on last year, this list is about the 2018 NFL season. It’s not about grading what they did last year alone, but rather what to expect from them this upcoming campaign. That’s why it is the top 100 players of 2018. I mean only 12 teams even played this year so far. Of course you should have recency bias to some degree, but you also have to look at the body of work and what you believe they are capable of. Without any further ado, here’s what I came up with:
Once again NFL players voted for their peers to be named among the top 100 for this upcoming season. I want to reiterate that once more. The list might be based on what you saw from these athletes last year, but you project how well they will play in the 2017/18 season. I like the whole idea of it, but players seem to get confused with fellows who missed time or simply didn’t play at the level they’re capable of. Sure, you have to take availability into account, but as long as they’re cleared medically you aren’t supposed to project to them to be injured. At the same time you need to bump players who are suspended for a certain amount of games (like I did with Brady a year ago) or if there still are legitimate health concerns. I didn’t put offensive linemen as high as I would if the list was solely about the best players, since the question is how much value they present and that unit consists of five guys.
Now that we’ve cleared up the parameters, here’s my list. It might look pretty different to the official one, but I tried to really create it based on value.
To make this clear right away – I love the NFL Top 100 list. I watch it every single year and they have some great audio clips, commentary and game scenes. But I also often disagree with the rankings, especially because I feel like the players vote for the top performers from the previous season instead of trying to project who the best players during the upcoming season will be. Because of that I listed the most under- and overrated players on the countdown and who I think got snubbed a couple of weeks ago.
Additionally I make my own list every year. To not have to argue about the criteria I didn’t include guys who didn’t play a single snap during the season like Jordy Nelson and Joe Haden, while also excluding someone like Justin Houston, who I’m not sure about if he’ll be cleared to hit the field in 2016. And since Tom Brady will ‘more likely than not’ be suspended for the first four games of the season he also dropped out of my top ten. Other players who struggled with staying on the field in previous years might have also not made the cut.
So here’s my version of the Top 100:
Every year over hundreds of players select their top 20 players in the league and the NFL Network compiles those lists to build the NFL Top 100. The first problem is that each player only lists his best 20, in which some of the guys at the bottom should never come up if everybody gave an objective opinion. The second one is that each player sees some on their fellow athletes twice during the season and some not at all and therefore they don’t get to see everybody on tape. So some mistakes are made and players get listed too high, too low or not at all. Here are my corrections:
First of all, I love the Top 100 Players show. I love most of the clips, the comments – pretty much everything. But that doesn’t mean I agree with the rankings. Not at all. I already mentioned once that I don’t think the voting players get to see everybody in the league play. This is no form of critique, but rather me understanding what preparing for opponents and getting ready for game day feels like. You don’t have the time to watch teams you don’t even play against the entire year. So much like last year, I thought it was time to get a few things right. What you can read right here are lists of who I thought should have been ranked a lot higher and lower plus who I thought would have deserved a spot himself.
With the NFL Network already having presented numbers 100 to 81 and Terrell Suggs making an early appearance at the 84th spot, I decided to make my own list to stop the madness. If T-Sizzle is ranked this low I already fear what is lying ahead of us. The rankings come from their fellow players, which is somewhat understandable, but if you consider how much work they need to do during the season, I’m not sure how they can really evaluate all the players in the league. Sure, they know the game and have to study their opponents prior to the respective matchups, but I don’t know how much time they have to just watch different games and tell who the top 100 are.
To explain what this list is about – A number of players around the league get to list their top players in the NFL heading into this upcoming season and the result is the list, who is revealed in ten or eleven blocks of ten (depending on if they split the top ten this year again). So this is not about last year and it’s kind of about projecting as well, but since the voting process happened before some players were suspended for a couple of games, I didn’t take that fact into consideration either.
Full the already revealed players and the other 80 still coming up check in right here.
Here’s my list: