Introducing PFT’s Top 100

NFL Network generates a lot of discussion during this slowest point in the offseason by listing the Top 100 players in the league.  It’s a worthwhile endeavor, but it also has generated plenty of criticism.

So we decided that, in lieu of continuing to criticize it, we would just do our list.  So that we too could be criticized.

The problem with the NFL Network list is that it surveys only NFL players, many of whom openly acknowledge that they don’t take it seriously.  The players who vote are asked only to list their own top 20.

That’s how you get players like Donovan McNabb making the list after he had just been benched in Washington (and before his final season, in which he’d be benched once again, this time in Minnesota), or Tim Tebow making the list months after the Broncos had sent him packing — and months before he would become the NFL’s most distracting bench warmer with the Jets.

It says something about NFL Network’s list that just hours after its unveiling was completed last week, Drew Brees appeared on NFLN and said, “I did not vote and I don’t know anybody who did.”  NFL Network’s Eric Davis replied, “Neither do I.”

So we assembled a group of members of the NFL media, and we asked them to identify their top 50 (not 20) players each.  The panelists were Kevin Acee of U-T San Diego, Paul Allen of KFAN and the Viking Radio Network, Anthony Becht of PFT on NBCSN, Dave Birkett of the Detroit Free Press, PFT on NBCSN producer Matt Casey, Tom Curran of CSN New England, Mike Dempsey of 1010XL in Jacksonville, Sam Farmer of the Los Angeles Times, Mike Freeman of CBSSports.com, Bob Glauber of Newsday, Tim Graham of the Buffalo News, Tony Grossi of ESPNCleveland.com, Peter King of Sports Illustrated, Shaun King of PFT on NBCSN, Mike Klis of the Denver Post, Eric Kuselias of PFT on NBCSN and NBC Sports Radio, Matt Maiocco of CSN Bay Area, Alex Marvez of FOXSports.com and SiriusXM NFL Radio, John McClain of the Houston Chronicle, Tim McManus of PhillyMag.com and 97.5 The Fanatic, Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News, former Bills and Jaguars coach Mike Mularkey, who has done some work with PFT on NBCSN, John Mullin of CSN Chicago, Pete Najarian of PFT on NBCSN, the folks at The Dan Patrick Show (one combined ballot), Joe Reedy of the Cincinnati Enquirer, Alan Robinson of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald, Rich Tandler of CSN Washington, Ross Tucker of PFT on NBCSN, SiriusXM NFL Radio, and Sports USA Media, Matt Vensel of the Baltimore Sun, Charean Williams of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, and Jim Wyatt of the Tennessean.

And, of course, every PFT writer got a ballot:  Alper, Crabtree, Florio, Gantt, Smith, and Wilkening.

We know we’ll hear from plenty of you who disagree with our Top 100.  And that’s part of the fun.  We’ll be rolling our Top 100 out 25 at a time for the next four Mondays.

No. 100-76 will be unveiled later today.

65 responses to “Introducing PFT’s Top 100

  1. Why do people always start at 100 and count backwards to 1? Personally, I would prefer these lists to start at 1 and go forward to 100.

  2. As much as he’s in, and how bad he’s despised; lets not forget how good Aaron Hernandez was last season until his injuries slowed him down, and how great he was becoming overall. Sucks I know but it’s the truth.

  3. I am a football junkie but watch very little NFL Network. Endless reruns of Hard Knocks,Top Ten,Wired for Sound and former players yackety yakking. NFL Films has a vast library of classic games,how about showing them?

  4. Mike, how about an all criminal team? According to press reports there have been 29 players arrested since the super bowl. I dont think some teams scouting departments are doing their jobs very well. And which team has the most criminals on the active roster? They are criminals,,right, if arrested means you are a criminal…
    The 2013-14 PFT All Criminal team. Sh** I love it.

  5. So, you want a bunch of guys that did not play.. did not coach.. was not a college scout or general manager and obviously not an owner… the same ones that come up with mock drafts telling each team what they should do and when they don’t say it is a bad draft….good idea.

  6. marty2020 says:
    Jul 1, 2013 10:21 AM

    Why do people always start at 100 and count backwards to 1? Personally, I would prefer these lists to start at 1 and go forward to 100.
    ___________________________________

    It’s called a countdown. You save the best for last.

  7. Why can’t Peyton win in the play offs? 1 SB and 2 appearances …..While Brady has 3 SB’s….5 appearances ? I guess people enjoy the non sense at the line of scrimmage?

  8. I hope to see a member or two of the super-snubbed Rams defense appear on this list. No Long, Jenkins or Laurinaitis?! What up with that!

  9. Please don’t embarrass yourselves like NFL Network and list Cameron Wake at #89..They lost all credibility with me for that one. If he isn’t top 30 this list is just another lazy one. Tired of people who don’t watch Dolphin games (and other sub-par teams for that matter) act like there are no good or great players on those teams. Remember people it’s the top 100 players of the year, stop looking at entire careers. People do fall off you know!

  10. I really don’t think there is a bigger waste of TV time than the NFL network’s lame attempt to make itself relevent in the offseason by putting up the top 100 players of 2013, which is based on 2012 season performances.

    With all due respect, who cares? It’s for one season, and once the 2013 training camps open, no one will care or remember.

    Why not go back into the NFL history archives and show us some memorable games that many young fans have never seen? How about replaying games like the 1960 NFL championship game, (especially for Eagles fans)? Where are replays of those great NFC playoff rivalries of the 1970s between the Cowboys, Vikings and Rams? Or the AFC playoff games of the same decade between the Dolphins, Steelers and Raiders? What about the 1980s playoff clashes between the 49ers, Bears, Giants and Redskins, or the AFC clashes between the Broncos, Browns, Jets, Dolphins, Raiders, etc? How many young NFL fans have never seen Jim Brown play in the 1964 NFL championship game, or Johnny Unitas in the 1958 and 1959 NFL championship games?

    No, instead of some solid and very memorable historical games we get endless reruns of NFL Total Access and this joke of a player rankings from last year. The NFL network could do so much more with its offseason programming than it is doing right now.

  11. Let me go ahead and ruin the suspense for all of you.

    #1 Mr. Russell “real deal” Wilson

  12. lionsdraftguy says:
    Jul 1, 2013 10:40 AM
    Like how Fitzgerald made #22 when he didnt even break 800yds and got a measily 4 TDs.

    I love Fitz, but #22 for 2013? C’mon, man!!
    ________________________________
    Maybe Fitz is too high, but I imagine that some reasoning is that in 2013, he should have stability at QB with an eperienced vet in Palmer who can get him the ball .

    No offense to writers, but many of aren’t qualified schematically and football knowledge wise to do the list either. Guys like Gosselin, Bedard, Matt Bowen etc, yes. Peter King? HAHAHA. Maybe a good idea would be to let all 32 fanbases suggest their team’s best writers and national best writers then try to choose from that. We all know who is good who writes about our teams and most of us have national writers we respect.

  13. Its always 1)Brady 2) Peterson 3) Manning 4) Johnson 5) Rodgers in no particular order. Do we really need to see 2013?

  14. The NFL top 100, voting by player peers, has ShAaron Rodgers @#6.
    I do not agree. #12 should be at the respective number…#12 of 100.

  15. This will be interesting to say the least. You could never come out with a top 100 anything and have most of the people agree. I remember the NFLN’s top 10 hands. Jerry Rice was 7, but Fitzgerald was 4? Seriously. Now, I do agree with Cris Carter being #1 on that list – dude’s hands were outta this world, but Fitz #4 & Rice #7 is just…please.

  16. One request from 49ers fans…..please, for the love of god, don’t put Aldon Smith higher than Patrick Willis like NFL.com did.

  17. My advice would be to choose your top 100 and just list them alphabetically. I never understood the need for people to rank everything, especially in sports. How exactly do you compare defensive backs to offensive linemen?

    And why on earth does Manish Metha get a say? He’s a gossip columnist masquerading as a football writer.

  18. grpatriot says:
    Jul 1, 2013 10:44 AM
    Why can’t Peyton win in the play offs? 1 SB and 2 appearances …..While Brady has 3 SB’s….5 appearances ? I guess people enjoy the non sense at the line of scrimmage?
    ———————————————————–

    I think it’s called cheating. Brady zero super bowls since NE caught cheating. Perhaps that’s the stat that really matters.

  19. Who is #1? I bet Aaron Rodgers.

    Part of me thinks this is silly. But it’s also kind of fun.

  20. TE Brandon Myers better make the list! , he was one of the best tight ends last year n he didn’t get recognized

  21. Any top 100 is going to be subjective and opinionated, so no matter who puts what, they are “right” as much as the next person. Scroll up through the comments and you can see each person has a different idea of who is what and where they should be.

    So in other words, griping about a top 100 list is kind of a waste of time. Welcome to the NFL offseason….

  22. Will the Jaguars have anyone else besides MJD on the list? The world wants to know.

    Seriously though, if the Jaguars have anyone on the list, you did it wrong. Sigh…Go Jags.

  23. Any list that doesn’t include Marques Colston is illegitimate.

    For instance, Colston is one of only about five receivers to have eclipsed 1,000 yards receiving in at least 6 out of his first 7 seasons. Dude’s a beast that continues to go unrecognized by all the braindead idiots in the media.

    If Colston isn’t on the list, there’s no reason to continue reading it. End of story.

  24. The logical top 5

    1. Bob Griffin
    1b. Alfred Morris
    1c. Sammy Baugh’s ghost
    1d. Santana Moss
    1e. I can’t think of any more redskins

  25. This could be interesting. Like others have stated I’m not a huge fan of some of your voters though.

    As to the guy that wants the worst 100 players….that’s not a fair list. It’s completely skewed toward the Jags and Jets! Lol

  26. JJ Watt and AP were the two most unstoppable players last year. The top 10 should be 1A. AP -> 1B JJ Watt -> Geno Atkins -> Von Miller -> Dick Sherman -> Evan Matthis -> Aaron Rodgers -> Cameron Wake -> Andre Johnson -> Patrick Willis. That is your top ten ladies and gents. Sorry if you’re butthurt by the truth.

  27. @dirtybird28

    Here are my nominations:

    contra74
    rick spielman is a magician
    crownofthehelment
    vikings28
    purpleguy

    And to show it’s not just Vike Fans:

    ruvelligwebuike
    tokyosandblaster
    logicalvoicesays (just kidding)

  28. I despise the Niners, but Jayniner I have to agree with you on what you said. Aldon Smith is in no way shape or form better than Willis at all ever.

  29. Ok. Let’s get it right this time. 🙂 Calvin, AP, and Rodgers should be the top 3. Manning is a stud, but Rodgers has clearly surpassed him by now.

  30. Please tell me CJ Spiller, Jaruis Byrd and Jimmy Graham will be on this list. Can’t believe this guys were left off NFLN list. Especially Graham.

  31. @vikingsrulez69
    You realize Vikings fans are the only ones that call him AD, right? You guys try so hard…kind of feel sorry for you.

  32. Well, if it’s based on last years numbers and not where the team ended up and not a popularity contest, then Tony Romo should have been on the NFLN list and also be on this one. Like the Cowboys or hate them, Romo threw for over 4900 yds last season.

  33. @dirtybird28:

    Here are my picks for top fans, limiting myself to the NFC North:

    Bears – ososrule, and many others.
    Vikes – ponderthedumpoffking, among others.
    Lions – lionsdraftguy, and…uh…just him.
    Packers – tokyosandblaster (The man got married at Lambeau…’Nuff said.)

    Most annoying fans, league-wide:

    filthymcnasty1, and all his minions.
    logicalvoicesays
    iknoweverything

  34. Tom Brady is the best player in the history of the NFL.. in time, Aaron Hernandez would’ve risen to #2 had he not murdered 3 people (allegedly)

  35. Seeing as how the first 25 were released, I had to come back and see if Chris Chase was one of the “Members” creating this list…..

  36. I see “homers” on the list of voters for most teams – Allen for the Heidis, etc. – but don’t recognize any Wisconsinites. So maybe Peterson will rank ahead of Rodgers. And I guess Desmond Bishop may make the list as well.

  37. I am concerned that the New Orleans market isn’t represented. In fact, the only person whose job is/was tied to the NFC South at all on this list is Darin Gantt, who hasn’t covered the Panthers in about a year. You can’t find ONE reliable correspondent for NO, ATL, TB? Start with Larry Holder from the TP; you’ve had him on PFT Live.

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