This week, we talk about the NFL’s Top 100 List, Matt Ryan’s eliteness, which teams will make huge moves and how sad would my Madden ranking be?
The Baltimore Ravens and Atlanta Falcons.
Let’s start with Baltimore. Last year, the Ravens had the league’s best defense. In the offseason, they signed free safety Earl Thomas but lost safety Eric Weddle, edge rushers Za’Darius Smith and Terrell Suggs and inside linebacker C.J. Mosley. An absurd amount of talent walked out the door. Offensively, Lamar Jackson has gigantic questions to answer, and now is relying on a rookie receiver in Hollywood Brown to be his main perimeter weapon. Color me uninspired.
Atlanta is a team many seem to be sleeping on. The Falcons were racked by key injures last year including linebacker Deion Jones and safety Keanu Neal. While there are questions in the trenches, Atlanta has all the pieces to make a run. The defense is solid let by a terrific secondary, and the offense has weapons galore captain by Matt Ryan. Speaking of Ryan…
Elite is a strong word, and a subjective one. My definition of elite would mean being either the best, or in the case of sports, a certain Hall of Famer. To me, Patrick Mahomes, Aaron Rodgers, Tom Brady and Drew Brees are elite. RussellWilson and Andrew Luck are really close. Ryan slots in about where Philip Rivers does. Fantastic, but not a surefire Hall of Fame talent.
If Ryan had won Super Bowl LI, he’s likely ticketed for Canton. Fair or unfair, it’s the reality. He would have an MVP and Lombardi Trophy to his name, accompanying his 46,720 passing yards and 295 passing touchdowns.
In short, he’s not elite, but he’s better than 70-75 percent of other quarterbacks in the league today.
In the past, it’s been done around Thanksgiving. I’m not sure if that’s still the way NFL Network does it, although it make sense. That way, the ballots can be filled out with players seeing almost all of the regular season having already unfolded.
Personally, I think the list is fun but nothing more. Some fans take it as gospel. Many in Kansas City were furious Patrick Mahomes wasn’t No. 1. My thought? Who cares? Lord knows he doesn’t. Mahomes won the MVP and is gunning for a Super Bowl.
It’s summer and I do believe NFL Films does a great job putting the segments together, but beyond viewing pleasure, the list doesn’t factor into my thinking one bit.
Do they have negative numbers? I kid, sort of.
For reference, I’m 6-foot-2 and 225 pounds. I’d need to play either strong safety, quarterback or running back. If you’ve ever seen me run, you were probably wondering why some guy was trying to book it on a pair of broken ankles. It’s not pretty. Bluntly, take quarterback and strong safety out of the mix.
This leaves us at quarterback. The arm is decent for an average person. I can probably chuck the ball 35-40 yards with some accuracy, albeit in a game of catch. If you have Von Miller screaming off the edge, I’m taking an intentional grounding penalty every time.
The worst players in the game are rated in the high-50s. Put me down for a 27.