The NFL Top 100 is essentially something that’s just done “for funsies” (as well as another interest-generating moneymaker for the league) and can’t be taken seriously but since it does exist and is influenced by player opinions, there’s relevance when it comes to discussion. The discussion I’ve been having with myself about it lately is how almost half of the list is off to an undesirable start to the season.
That includes the top three players, five of the top six, seven of the top 10, and so on.
You won’t see any Seahawks players mentioned and I don’t think it’s due to any bias from my end. I was kinda shocked to look back and realize that Seattle players didn’t get a ton of love this year. The highest-ranked was Russell Wilson at 17 and Earl Thomas dropped 45 spots for no apparent reason. He was ranked 66th, behind players such as Blake Bortles and Reggie Nelson.
But voters on the list were really quick to jump Cam Newton from 73 to 1, Josh Norman from N/A to 11 (ahead of Richard Sherman), Carson Palmer ahead of Wilson, and Todd Gurley all the way up to 22 after part of one season. Maybe it’s some of that eagerness to to anoint something “shiny” over something “consistent” that has caused a little bit of the havoc you’ll see below. Some of these players were just injured, some were suspended, and others are playing bad because people around them are playing bad. Either way, is the top 100 cursed and do you not want to see Seahawks on it anyhow for those reasons?
See for yourself. Full List here.
#1. Cam Newton -- Six interceptions in five games, passer rating of 81.2, 1-4 record, missed game due to concussion
#2. Tom Brady — Suspended four games
#3. J.J. Watt -- Back injury slowed him down early in year, placed on injured reserve after three games
#5. Adrian Peterson — Averaged 1.6 YPC before being placed on injured reserve with torn meniscus
#6. Aaron Rodgers — 20th in passer rating, 27th in yards per attempt
#9. Rob Gronkowski — Essentially missed four games, but has 271 yards over last two games
#10. Odell Beckham, Jr — I’m personally not sure what all the negative hype was about and Beckham had 222 yards and two touchdowns on Sunday, but I’m sure some questioned his value after a few sideline tirades
#12. Carson Palmer — 24th in passer rating, missed one game with concussion
#19. DeAndre Hopkins — Whether it’s his fault or Brock Osweiler’s, Hopkins is down from 95 YPG to 59 YPG, his catch% is down to 54.4%, and he was targeted 15 times on Sunday night against the Colts, but gained just 71 yards
#21. Ben Roethlisberger — Suffered meniscus injury, needs surgery, no timetable on return
#22. Todd Gurley — Averaging 2.9 YPC after vaulting this high on the boards following just one season
#24. Darrelle Revis — Potentially just a bad player now
#26. Justin Houston — Still recovering from a torn ACL, eligible to return October 30
#28. Tyrann Mathieu — Appears quite limited following recovery from knee injury last season, doesn’t seem to be making nearly as big of an impact as team puts him in new role to reduce risk of re-aggravation
#31. Allen Robinson -- Can’t believe he’s this high but Robinson did have 14 touchdowns, 1,400 yards last year; averaging only 57.4 YPG this season, most in a game is 72 back in Week 1 — that was on 15 targets
#33. Doug Martin — Bucs made mistake of re-signing a free agent running back coming off of a career-year, as Martin has 85 yards in two games and has been sidelined with hamstring injury
#35. Andy Dalton — Playing okay, but Bengals are 2-4 and Dalton averaging just one touchdown per game; all four losses were essentially blowouts
#36. DeMarcus Ware — Broncos were wary of Ware due to age and he hasn’t played since Week 2 after suffering elbow injury
#40. Ndamukong Suh — Is he an impact player if he’s not hurting someone? Worth adding that he’s basically uncuttable through 2019, will cost as much per year as a franchise quarterback, and the Dolphins are 31st in rushing defense
#41. Le’Veon Bell — Suspended three games
#43. Ezekiel Ansah — Missed three games with injury, zero sacks in other three games
#44. Tyler Eifert — Missed every game with an ankle injury
#51. Dez Bryant — Missed last three games, had just one catch for eight yards in Week 1, has missed 10 games total since last season
#56. Blake Bortles — Yeah, so... Bortles was ranked 56th... He has a passer rating of 80.3 and seven interceptions
#58. Kawann Short — From 11 sacks to one sack in six games. Back on pace to his 2014 total of 3.5 sacks
#61. NaVorro Bowman — Torn Achilles, placed on IR
#75. Jamaal Charles — Returned from injury to play in last two games, 11 carries for 40 yards, two catches for 14
#78. Chris Ivory — Missed time with illness, but also has 31 carries for only 75 yards in three games with Jaguars
#82. Delanie Walker — Down from 72.5 YPG to 49.2 YPG
#84. Tamba Hali — One sack in five games
#86. Jonathan Stewart — Three games missed, 52.7 YPG
#87. Julian Edelman — Down from 77 YPG to 43.5 YPG, actually producing less with Tom Brady this season
#89. Allen Hurns — More problems for the Jaguars on this list; Hurns’ catch rate is down to 52.6% from 61% last season, TDs are down from 10 to one
#94. Gary Barnidge — Had nine touchdowns last year but has zero through six games
#96. Sammy Watkins — On IR with a foot injury but also had just 63 yards in two games when he was active
#100. Derek Carr — Nothing wrong here, of course. I just thought it’s interesting that Carr was the last guy in. Carr leads NFL in touchdown passes since last season and has a passer rating of 99.1 this year with Amari Cooper (not on the top 100) having a lot fewer drops in 2016. But Carr was behind Andrew Luck, Kirk Cousins, Alex Smith, Bortles, and Eli Manning on the list. How will things shake out next year?