Every year the players in the National Football League submit their votes for the Top 100 players league-wide. This Top 100 list always leads to controversy all over social media from the public and football media alike. In this article Max Hillman examines the AFC East players who made the Top 100, deciding whether or not he believes they deserve to be on there, and whether or not they should have placed higher or lower than where they did.
90th – Julian Edelman
Whilst Edelman missed 4 games due to suspension for substance policy violation, he made up for by playing well through the rest of the season. He was ultimately an integral piece of the Pats playoff run and showing up when it mattered in the Super Bowl. Edelman had 10 catches for 141 yards meant Edelman earned MVP in the Super Bowl and with it a place on the NFL Top 100. As for the position I believe #90 is fair, he wasn’t ranked in the top 100 prior to this year and his season’s stats don’t paint him as a top-class elite receiver in the league, as good as he is.
89th – Devin McCourty
Next, we have a fellow Patriot in Safety Devin McCourty coming in at one place higher than Edelman at #89. The two time Pro Bowler had a good season this year, playing every game and totalling 82 tackles, a pick-six and a forced fumble. McCourty was also an important piece of the Patriots championship team on the defensive side of the ball. Therefore I feel he deserves to be on the top 100 in a position identical or similar to #89.
71st – C.J Mosley
#71 is where we see new Jets LB C.J Mosley. Mosley was #98 on last years rankings but had a more than an impressive season in Baltimore. His standout moment being a 4th quarter interception of Baker Mayfield in week 17 to send them to the playoffs. The Jets defence in 2019 is going to be scary to play against for the rest of the league, and CJ Mosley is a major part of that and deserves a spot on the list. As far as his ranking goes, while there aren’t many LBs better than him in the league, #71 is a bit too generous for an ILB with a total of 8.5 sacks and 9 INTs in 5 years. However, as he is often double-teamed and has still racked up a massive amount of tackles I do see the reasoning behind the players’ votes.
55th – Xavien Howard
There are no more players on the list in the division until #55 with Dolphins CB Xavien Howard. A 2018 Pro Bowler, Howard managed 7 interceptions in 12 games played, with a fumble recovery and 35 total tackles to go along with them. He 100% deserves to be on the list and arguably is placed slightly too low, with only a few CB’s ahead of him who could be said to not be too much better than Howard. I believe he is more talented than a #55 player in the league.
37th – Jamal Adams
Jets safety Jamal Adams is the one lucky enough to earn the 37th spot on the Top 100. 3.5 sacks, an INT and a massive 115 total tackles earned Adams a pro bowl spot. All in just his second year, giving him a deserved #37 spot on the Top 100. In my opinion, Adams is too low, despite being 63 places higher than he was last year. Chargers star rookie Derwin James (who I don’t dispute is special) is the highest-ranked Safety at #31. While I believe James should be around that mark, there are others deserving of a spot ahead of him, including Adams as well as Eddie Jackson and Kevin Byard who didn’t even make the top 100!
22nd – Stephon Gilmore
2018 First Team All-Pro CB Stephon Gilmore for the Pats comes in at #22. A spot not only deserved with his key Super Bowl interception. It’s a little too late from a stats point of view, as he didn’t make it last year despite having similar numbers. I believe that he was placed correctly on the Top 100, there is a case for him to be higher on the list but as the top-ranked CB in the league, it’s hard to argue too much injustice.
6th – Tom Brady
Highest on the list, we have the definite Hall of Famer Tom Brady. Without needing to delve into his stats, Brady led the team to theirs and his 6th Super Bowl win. Even at 41 years old, Brady is an undisputed member of the Top 10 on the Top 100 list. Brady came #1 last year and then won a Championship so it could be argued that he should be higher. I don’t disagree with TB12’s placement and so I don’t feel a change in his ranking is necessary.
That’s the lot! In a fairly quiet ranking for the division, just 7 players made the cut. Let us know what your thoughts are and whether or not you agree with my opinions regarding the AFC East.