NFL Rank snubs, overrated players and surprises: Experts debate our top 100
We released our our annual NFL Rank list, our projection of the top 100 players for the 2020 NFL season, this week. The voting, carried out by 46 of our analysts and reporters, was geared toward the upcoming season and expectations, not prior success.
Like any list, there is plenty of room for argument and debate. Our expert panel weighs in here on the results and peek ahead to what the 2021 list might look like. Which player was snubbed from the list? Who was ranked too high — or too low? Who will be making the list in future years? Let the debating begin.
Which NFL player got snubbed from our top-100 list?
Matt Bowen, NFL analyst: Mark Andrews, Ravens tight end. In 2019, Andrews led all NFL tight ends with 10 touchdown receptions — including seven red zone scores — while also producing 16 explosive plays. A prime fit for Baltimore’s multiple tight end sets and play-action route tree, he has both the seam-stretching ability and catch radius to win in the middle of the field for quarterback Lamar Jackson. And given the Ravens’ pass-game structure, Andrews should see close to 100 targets again this season, too. Simply put, you can’t leave this level of production and overall impact off the list.
Mike Clay, NFL analyst: Calais Campbell, Ravens defensive lineman. Last season, Campbell was grossly underrated on this list at 69th overall. And following yet another terrific season, he was inexplicably left off entirely in 2020. Campbell was on the field for over 700 snaps for the 11th consecutive season in 2019, and though his tackle and sack numbers were down, his pass rush win rate actually increased from 15.4% in 2018 to 16.1% in 2019. Terrific as a run-stuffer and pass-rusher, Campbell enters his age-34 season with a new team but remains one of the league’s most dominant and versatile defensive linemen.
Jeremy Fowler, national NFL reporter: Lavonte David, Buccaneers linebacker. He’s widely considered a top-three linebacker in the eyes of NFL personnel, so there’s no reason why he should be a snub here. He has no weakness, filling up every stat box since 2012: 45 passes defended, 21 forced fumbles, 11 interceptions, 22.5 sacks, 52 quarterback hits and 116 tackles for loss. His 89.2 Pro Football Focus grade last season ranks among the best for inside or stack linebackers. The unheralded star should be closer to the top 50, let alone in the top 100. Additionally, any list without Ravens cornerback Marcus Peters doesn’t quite feel right.
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