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PFT’s Top 100: Who’s No. 1?

Aaron Rodgers AP

Early this summer, PFT polled a panel of NFL media types and asked them to help us compile a list of the Top 100 players in the NFL — a list that would be, we thought, better than NFL Network’s list of the Top 100 players, mostly because we asked members of the media who would actually take the exercise seriously, whereas NFL Network polls players who openly admit that they don’t give the vote much thought.

Now we have our final tally.

Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers tops the list, followed by Patriots quarterback Tom Brady, Texans defensive end J.J. Watt, Vikings running back Adrian Peterson and Lions receiver Calvin Johnson. We know that Top 5 will generate plenty of debate, especially the part about the league’s reigning MVP coming in fourth. Read through the whole list and tell us your thoughts.

1 Aaron Rodgers, quarterback, Packers

2 Tom Brady, quarterback, Patriots

3 J.J. Watt, defensive end, Texans

4 Adrian Peterson, running back, Vikings

5 Calvin Johnson, receiver, Lions

6 Peyton Manning, quarterback, Broncos

7 Drew Brees, quarterback, Saints

8 Von Miller, linebacker, Broncos

9 Geno Atkins, defensive tackle, Bengals

10 Darrelle Revis, cornerback, Buccaneers

11 Patrick Willis, linebacker, 49ers

12 Richard Sherman, cornerback, Seahawks

13 Larry Fitzgerald, receiver, Cardinals

14 DeMarcus Ware, linebacker, Cowboys

15 A.J. Green, receiver, Bengals

16 Eli Manning, quarterback, Giants

17 Matt Ryan, quarterback, Falcons

18 Clay Matthews, linebacker, Packers

19 Ben Roethlisberger, quarterback, Steelers

20 Aldon Smith, linebacker, 49ers

21 Cameron Wake, defensive end, Dolphins

22 Joe Flacco, quarterback, Ravens

23 Joe Thomas, offensive tackle, Browns

24 Haloti Ngata, defensive tackle, Ravens

25 Andre Johnson, receiver, Texans

26 Rob Gronkowski, tight end, Patriots

27 Duane Brown, offensive tackle, Texans

28 Justin Smith, defensive end, 49ers

29 Brandon Marshall, receiver, Bears

30 Robert Griffin III, quarterback, Redskins

31 Julio Jones, receiver, Falcons

32 NaVorro Bowman, linebacker, 49ers

33 Arian Foster, running back, Texans

34 Jason Pierre-Paul, defensive end, Giants

35 Andrew Luck, quarterback, Colts

36 Ryan Clady, offensive tackle, Broncos

37 Patrick Peterson, cornerback, Cardinals

38 Jimmy Graham, tight end, Saints

39 Marshawn Lynch, running back, Seahawks

40 Jared Allen, defensive end, Vikings

41 Russell Wilson, quarterback, Seahawks

42 Joe Staley, offensive tackle, 49ers

43 Julius Peppers, defensive end, Bears

44 Charles Tillman, cornerback, Bears

45 Vince Wilfork, defensive tackle, Patriots

46 Wes Welker, receiver, Broncos

47 Ray Rice, running back, Ravens

48 Eric Weddle, safety, Chargers

49 Earl Thomas, safety, Seahawks

50 Jamaal Charles, running back, Chiefs

51 Demaryius Thomas, receiver, Broncos

52 Colin Kaepernick, quarterback, 49ers

53 Percy Harvin, receiver, Seahawks

54 Ndamukong Suh, defensive tackle, Lions

55 Cam Newton, quarterback, Panthers

56 Dez Bryant, receiver, Cowboys

57 Gerald McCoy, defensive tackle, Buccaneers

58 Marshal Yanda, guard, Ravens

59 Roddy White, receiver, Falcons

60 Vincent Jackson, receiver, Buccaneers

61 Daryl Washington, linebacker, Cardinals

62 Jason Witten, tight end, Cowboys

63 Jahri Evans, guard, Saints

64 Mike Iupati, guard, 49ers

65 Jerod Mayo, linebacker, Patriots

66 Terrell Suggs, outside linebacker, Ravens

67 Tony Gonzalez, tight end, Falcons

68 Logan Mankins, guard, Patriots

69 Luke Kuechly, linebacker, Panthers

70 Jairus Byrd, safety, Bills

71 LeSean McCoy, running back, Eagles

72 Troy Polamalu, safety, Steelers

73 Muhammad Wilkerson, defensive end, Jets

74 Maurkice Pouncey, center, Steelers

75 Victor Cruz, receiver, Giants

76 Tony Romo, quarterback, Cowboys

77 Doug Martin, running back, Buccaneers

78 Frank Gore, running back, 49ers

79 Carl Nicks, guard, Buccaneers

80 Maurice Jones-Drew, running back, Jaguars

81 Vernon Davis, tight end, 49ers

82 Evan Mathis, guard, Eagles

83 Alfred Morris, running back, Redskins

84 Joe Haden, cornerback, Browns

85 C.J. Spiller, running back, Bills

86 Calais Campbell, defensive end, Cardinals

87 Matthew Stafford, quarterback, Lions

88 Antonio Cromartie, cornerback, Jets

89 Jason Peters, offensive tackle, Eagles

90 Jordan Gross, offensive tackle, Panthers

91 Mike Pouncey, center, Dolphins

92 Mike Wallace, receiver, Dolphins

93 Reggie Wayne, receiver, Colts

94 Ed Reed, safety, Texans

95 Henry Melton, defensive tackle, Bears

96 Lance Briggs, linebacker, Bears

97 Steve Smith, receiver, Panthers

98 Antoine Winfield, cornerback, Seahawks

99 Max Unger, center, Seahawks

100 Matt Forte, running back, Bears

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Report: Giants center Weston Richburg fined for taunting

EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - AUGUST 22:   Eli Manning #10 of the New York Giants calls out the play as  Weston Richburg #70 prepares to make the snap in the first quarter against the Jacksonville Jaguars during preseason action at MetLife Stadium on August 22, 2015 in East Rutherford, New Jersey.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) Getty Images

Giants center Weston Richburg became the first player to be ejected from a game for picking up two separate unsportsmanlike conduct penalties under the new league rule requiring disqualification for such offenses.

The latter of the two penalties Richburg incurred has now led to a fine as well.

According to Adam Schefter of ESPN.com, Richburg has been fined $12,000 for taunting Washington Redskins cornerback Josh Norman. Richburg is appealing the fine.

Richburg was flagged for unsportsmanlike conduct for loudly and profanely (the interaction was clearly heard on the TV broadcast) disagreeing with a holding call against him. Then in the fourth quarter, Richburg blocked Norman from behind on a catch and run by Odell Beckham. He then turned around and stood over Norman, which drew the second flag and the ejection.

Richburg felt the umpire was out to get him. Now the league is out to get in his wallet.

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Wednesday’s PFT Live asks which undefeated team will be the last to lose

DENVER, CO - SEPTEMBER 18:  Strong safety T.J. Ward #43 of the Denver Broncos tackles tight end Jack Doyle #84 of the Indianapolis Colts in the red zone in the third quarter of the game at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on September 18, 2016 in Denver, Colorado. (Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images) Getty Images

Wednesday’s PFT Live features a visit from safety T.J. Ward of the 3-0 Broncos. Which meshes well with the question of the day: Which 3-0 team will be the last to lose?

The candidates are the Broncos, Eagles, Patriots, Ravens, and Vikings.

The Eagles definitely won’t lose this weekend; they don’t play. The other four do.

Cast a vote here, argue your case in the comments, and tune in at 6:00 a.m. ET on the radio side, 7:00 a.m. ET for the NBCSN simulcast.

Also joining us will be Armando Salguero of the Miami Herald. The Dolphins face the Bengals on a short week, after narrowly defeating the Browns on Sunday.

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Antonio Brown confirms he was told to change shoes or stay in the locker room

PHILADELPHIA, PA - SEPTEMBER 25:   Malcolm Jenkins #27 of the Philadelphia Eagles breaks up a pass to Antonio Brown #84 of the Pittsburgh Steelers in the second quarter at Lincoln Financial Field on September 25, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images) Getty Images

Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown changed out of his yellow and blue shoes at halftime of last weeks loss to the Eagles, but not by choice.

On his weekly Pittsburgh radio show Tuesday night, Brown confirmed that game officials gave him a choice: Change his shoes or stay in the locker room.

That was first reported by Mark Kaboly of DKPittsburghSports.com.

Brown changed his shoes for the second half. His yellow and blue shoes were an NFL uniform violation.

When Brown was fined for his blue shoes and his touchdown dance in the season opener, he said the fines were “nothing to a boss.” But the boss wanted to keep playing, so he changed his shoes last Sunday.

He can expect another fine this week.

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Report: Cardinals to sign long snapper Aaron Brewer

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After parting with long snapper Kameron Canaday after a botched field goal snap that led to a Buffalo Bills touchdown last week, the Arizona Cardinals brought in a pair of long snappers for tryouts on Tuesday.

According to Josh Weinfuss of ESPN.com, former Denver Broncos and Chicago Bears long snapper Aaron Brewer won the competition and will be signed by the Cardinals.

Brewer and Tyler Ott both worked out for Arizona on Tuesday.

Ott has appeared in just one regular season game playing for the New York Giants last season. He has also spent time with the New England Patriots and St. Louis Rams during previous offseasons.

Brewer has played in 64 games for the Denver Broncos over the last four seasons. He spent the offseason with the Chicago Bears before being released.

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Texans will sign Antonio Smith

Antonio Smith AP

The Texans are planning to sign veteran defensive end Antonio Smith to a one-year deal, PFT has learned.

The signing will become official Wednesday when the Texans place All-Pro defensive end J.J. Watt on injured reserve. Watt re-injured his back in last Thursday night’s loss to the Patriots.

Smith, 34, played for the Texans from 2009-13. He played in all 16 games as a backup for the Broncos last season.

Smith has 47 career sacks in 173 career games, 133 starts. He entered the league as a fifth-round pick of the Cardinals in 2004.

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Colin Kaepernick calls debate “embarrassing to watch”

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump listens to Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton during the presidential debate at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y., Monday, Sept. 26, 2016. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky) AP

In the week of the first presidential debate, neither Donald Trump nor Hillary Clinton but Colin Kaepernick occupied the cover of Time. On Tuesday, Kaepernick was asked if he saw the 98-minute back-and-forth.

I watched a little bit of it,” Kaepernick told reporters, via Cam Inman of the Bay Area News Group. “To me it was embarrassing to watch that these are our two candidates. Both are proven liars and it almost seems they’re trying to debate who’s less racist. At this point . . . you have to pick the lesser of two evils but in the end it’s still evil.”

Plenty of people feel the same way as Kaepernick. Regardless, in a nation of 319 million people, these are our two primary options.

At a time when the country seems to be more divided than ever, we seem to be destined to become even more divided, regardless of the outcome of the election.

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J.J. Watt could miss rest of season with back injury

HOUSTON, TX- OCTOBER 09: J.J. Watt #99 of the Houston Texans celebrates an Indianapolis Colts fumble after he returned it for a touchdown in the fourth quarter in a NFL game on October 9, 2014 at NRG Stadium in Houston, Texas. (Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images) Getty Images

Football’s top defensive player could be done for the year.

Texans defensive lineman J.J. Watt has re-injured his back and is expected to miss significant time, possibly the rest of the season, Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reports.

According to the report, the Texans are still gathering information about the injury, which he apparently suffered Thursday night in New England.

Watt was dealing with a back injury throughout the offseason, and after he underwent surgery to repair a herniated disc, there were some reports over the summer that he might not be able to return in time for the beginning of the regular season. He has played all three games this year, but he hasn’t looked like himself.

Now the Texans may be looking at playing the rest of 2016 without the three-time NFL defensive player of the year. That would be a massive loss to the playoff hopes of the team that is currently leading the AFC South.

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Seahawks look at eight players, but no quarterbacks

SEATTLE, WA - SEPTEMBER 25:  Quarterback Russell Wilson #3 of the Seattle Seahawks warms up prior to the game against the San Francisco 49ers at CenturyLink Field on September 25, 2016 in Seattle, Washington.  (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images) Getty Images

If Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson can’t play on Sunday with a knee injury, the team apparently will be content to roll the dice with undrafted rookie Trevone Boykin.

On Tuesday, the Seahawks tried out eight players. None were quarterbacks.

Getting look-sees were running backs Bernard Pierce, Kenny Hilliard, Tommy Bohanan, and Darrel Young, defensive back Chimdi Chekwa, receiver Jamel Johnson, linebacker Randell Johnson, and defensive end Rufus Johnson.

Wilson has a sprained MCL. If it’s a low-grade tear, he should be able to play. Coach Pete Carroll has said that Wilson will practice on Wednesday.

The team’s interest in running backs comes from the leg injury suffered nine days ago by Thomas Rawls.

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Colts alter routine as they prep for London trip

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - JANUARY 03:  Head coach Chuck Pagano of the Indianapolis Colts talks to his players during the game against the Tennessee Titans at Lucas Oil Stadium on January 3, 2016 in Indianapolis, Indiana.  (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Colts held what was basically a walkthrough Tuesday, normally a day off for players.

It’s not a normal week, though, as the Colts play the Jaguars in London Sunday. This marks the fourth straight year the Jaguars will play a home game in London, but the experience is new to the Colts.

“The theme is to keep the main thing the main thing, and that’s preparation, prepare, do everything, try to keep things as normal as possible from a preparation and practice standpoint,” Colts coach Chuck Pagano said, per the team’s official transcript. “You have to make a few adjustments here and there, but at the end of the day it’s focus and mindset on one thing and one thing only, and that is getting win No. 2.”

The Colts, who rallied to beat the Chargers last Sunday, will fly to London Thursday evening and practice after arriving Friday morning. Pagano said the team kept things light Tuesday but felt that using the day to begin prepping for the Jaguars was necessary given the circumstances.

“We are just coming off a really physical and mental-draining game, as you know,” he said. “We had really good, long meetings, [an] introduction to Jacksonville. We will amp it up tomorrow. We will amp it up Thursday.”

Sunday’s game kicks off at 9:30 a.m. ET.

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Cardinals try out several punters and long snappers

GLENDALE, AZ - SEPTEMBER 11:  Punter Drew Butler #2 of the Arizona Cardinals walks off the field following the NFL game against the New England Patriots at the University of Phoenix Stadium on September 11, 2016 in Glendale, Arizona. The Patriots defeated the Cardinals 23-21.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Cardinals will be adding a long snapper this week. They also plan to add a punter, too.

Per a league source, the Cardinals worked out Tim Masthay, Michael Palardy, and Ryan Quigley on Tuesday. Whoever gets the job will serve as the short-term solution while Drew Butler (pictured) recovers from an Achilles injury.

With Kameron Canady released, the Cardinals also tried out long snappers Tyler Ott and Aaron Brewer.

The next punter could have a chance to give Butler the boot; he is averaging a career-low 40.3 yards per punt in 2016, along with a career-low 33.7-yard net.

Butler will still serve as the holder. Botch field-goal attempts fueled by bad snaps have marred both of Arizona’s losses in 2016.

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Lions bring back Aaron Dobson

GLENDALE, AZ - FEBRUARY 01:  Aaron Dobson #17 of the New England Patriots looks on during warm ups prior to Super Bowl XLIX against the Seattle Seahawks at University of Phoenix Stadium on February 1, 2015 in Glendale, Arizona.  (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images) Getty Images

It’s not quite the full-blown 54-man roster trick, because receiver Aaron Dobson still isn’t a vested veteran and must pass through waivers. Still, Dobson is emerging as the early bottom-of-roster option in Detroit for player who is cut in order to create a roster spot for a position of need and then re-signed the following week.

That’s precisely what the Lions have done with Dobson, waiving him last week and bringing him back this week.

A second-round pick of the Patriots in 2013, Dobson was cut by the Patriots as the 2016 rosters reduced to 53.

Some teams will cut a vested veteran last in a given week, allowing a practice-squad player to be promoted for game day. Then, the vested veteran will be resigned the following week, getting full pay for both weeks.

Per a league source, the Lions also kicked tires on Tuesday on four other players: defensive end Quinton Coples, linebacker Bjoern Werner, and tight ends Justice Cunningham and Adrien Robinson. None were signed.

Copies and Werner are former first-round picks who currently are looking for their next NFL opportunities. The Lions have a need at pass rusher, given the ankle injury suffered in Week Two by Ziggy Ansah.

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Bears signing defensive lineman C.J. Wilson

CJWilson Getty Images

The Bears are signing defensive tackle C.J. Wilson, his agents announced on Twitter.

Wilson, 29, spent time with the Raiders and Lions last season. He was released by the Saints in August.

He’s a veteran of 78 career games and 19 starts, and he’ll have a chance to contribute immediately on a Bears defense that’s dealing with multiple injury issues.

Wilson was part of a Bears tryout Tuesday that included running back Joique Bell, tackles Clay DeBord, Colin Kelly, and Arturo Uzdavinis, guard Austin Shepherd and defensive tackle Sealver Siliga. The Bears signed Bell to the active roster and signed Kelly to the practice squad.

The Packers selected Wilson in the seventh round of the 2010 draft and he played his first four seasons in Green Bay. He has 6.5 career sacks.

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Collins says he’ll rest for now, surgery decision will come later

La'el Collins AP

Cowboys guard La’El Collins told reporters Tuesday that he plans to rest his injured toe for two weeks before a decision is made on whether he needs surgery.

Collins has torn ligaments in his right big toe. He was placed on injured reserve Monday, but he’ll eligible to return in eight weeks if he’s healed and up to speed. Collins is wearing a protective boot and undergoing treatment in hopes the injury will heal without surgery.

There had been conflicting reports on whether or not surgery would be necessary, and also whether an eventual decision would be dictated by how much pain Collins could tolerate or if the injury would heal in time for a return this season.

Ronald Leary will move into the starting lineup at left guard.

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Panthers sign Michael Griffin

KANSAS CITY, MO - AUGUST 28:  Free safety Michael Griffin #33 of the Tennessee Titans in action during the preseason game against the Kansas City Chiefs at Arrowhead Stadium on August 28, 2015 in Kansas City, Missouri.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Panthers have made a veteran addition to their secondary.

The team announced Tuesday that they have signed former Titans safety Michael Griffin. Griffin was released by the Titans in February and signed with the Vikings in March, but didn’t make Minnesota’s roster coming out of the preseason.

Griffin, a 2007 first-round pick, played 141 games for the Titans over nine years with the organization. He was a two-time Pro Bowler during his run in Tennessee, but his play had slipped by the end of his time with the team.

He’ll join Kurt Coleman, Tre Boston and Colin Jones in Carolina with Dean Marlowe on injured reserve and Marcus Ball getting waived to make room for Griffin.

The Panthers also confirmed the signing of defensive tackle Kyle Love, who will help fill in for the injured Vernon Butler, and announced that defensive end Ryan Delaire is headed to injured reserve with a knee injury.

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Get to know Zachary Orr

BALTIMORE, MD - SEPTEMBER 11: Linebacker Zach Orr #54 of the Baltimore Ravens celebrates in the first half of the Buffalo Bills vs. the Baltimore Ravens game at M&T Bank Stadium on September 11, 2016 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Ravens have one new first-year starter in 2016: Linebacker Zachary Orr. The undrafted free agent from North Texas in 2014 has made the most of the assignment, leading the team in tackles and notching the game-clinching interception to seal Sunday’s win at Jacksonville.

Orr joined PFT Live on Tuesday to discuss his team’s performance to date, the moment when he realized he belongs on the field with the rest of the Baltimore defense, and the strong temptation to keep running with the ball after he picked it off, in an effort to score a touchdown in a game the Ravens led by only two points.

Get to know him now, because based on the way he’s playing you’ll be hearing his name a lot more frequently throughout the rest of the season, and beyond.

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