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Old 06-07-2009, 07:14 PM   #1
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Default Sporting News : NFL's top 25 players for '09

1. Peyton Manning, QB, Colts. His football IQ is unmatched. He's remarkably accurate, the ultimate competitor and indispensable.


2. Adrian Peterson, RB, Vikings. He already is the NFL's best runner, and coaches say they'll finally throw him the ball this year.


3. Tom Brady, QB, Patriots. Brady and the Patriots feel like their '08 season was taken from them. He's healthy, and it's payback time.


4. DeMarcus Ware, OLB, Cowboys. He is a game-changer -- an elite pass rusher with a stunning combination of size, speed, strength and agility.


5. Larry Fitzgerald, WR, Cardinals. His postseason run is the stuff little boys and grown men dream about.


6. James Harrison, OLB, Steelers. His biggest plays come as a pass rusher, but he does everything well. A complete and dominant player, Harrison wants to prove '08 was no fluke.


7. Ed Reed, S, Ravens. An instinctive ballhawk, Reed is a future Hall of Famer and will continue to flourish in a system that won't change with the departure of Rex Ryan.


8. Andre Johnson, WR, Texans. He was unstoppable when the Texans had no one else to stop. With improved depth at wideout and the emergence of RB Steve Slaton and TE Owen Daniels, Johnson could move up the list.


9. Troy Polamalu, S, Steelers. The catalyst for the Steelers' Super Bowl runs, he is tough, smart, instinctive and versatile.


10. Reggie Wayne, WR, Colts. He has been the Colts' go-to guy for a couple of years, a guy who can make something special happen on every touch. Marvin Harrison's departure won't have an impact.


11. Shawne Merriman, OLB, Chargers. After a year on the sideline, he is determined to be a force again, and coordinator Ron Rivera will make that happen. If Merriman is healthy, he'll be the focus of an elite defense.


12. Nnamdi Asomugha, CB, Raiders. When Peyton Manning avoids Asomugha's side of the field, it tells you all you need to know about this guy. He is the NFL's top cover corner.


13. Drew Brees, QB, Saints. Reggie Bush, Jeremy Shockey and Marques Colston missed 15 games combined last year, and Brees -- with his quick release and dead-on accuracy -- still threw for 5,000 yards. With all his weapons in place, he'll lead the Saints back to the playoffs.


14. Jared Allen, DE, Vikings. He is an elite pass rusher and also is a force against the run who never gives up on a play. He is tough, playing through knee and shoulder injuries in '08.


15. Albert Haynesworth, DT, Redskins. He is a dominant run defender with the size and quickness to also be a disruptive pass rusher. His production might not justify his contract, but he'll absolutely improve the Redskins' defense in '09.


16. Ryan Clady, OT, Broncos. Standard bearers Walter Jones and Orlando Pace still are good, but Clady was the NFL's best pass protector as a rookie, and the biggest improvement in most NFL players comes between Years 1 and 2.


17. Julius Peppers, DE, Panthers. If he is going to play in '09, it's going to be in Carolina. He is coming off a career year, and the team is poised for another playoff run. If he can "accept" his $16.7 million, one-year contract, he should dominate again.


18. Jason Witten, TE, Cowboys. With Terrell Owens out of the picture, Witten will get even more looks from pal Tony Romo. Witten is an excellent blocker with the speed, hands and route-running ability to remain a top receiving threat.


19. Anquan Boldin, WR, Cardinals. A big, physical receiver, he makes his biggest plays after the catch. He shows great toughness catching balls over the middle, too.


20. Randy Moss, WR, Patriots. No one is more excited about the return of Brady than Moss. The two were unstoppable in '07, and there is little reason to think they won't pick up where they left off.


21. Brian Urlacher, MLB, Bears. Urlacher had a down year in '08, but with improved play up front, there's no reason he can't reassert himself as the do-it-all middle man in the Bears' cover 2 scheme.


22. Steve Hutchinson, G, Vikings. Peterson should be thankful for Hutchinson, one of the most physical and dominant run blockers in the game.


23. Dwight Freeney, DE, Colts. With 10 1/2 sacks, Freeney enjoyed a bounce-back year in '08. When healthy, his speed off the edge is unmatched.


24. Kevin Williams, DT, Vikings. The potential for a four-game suspension hurts his ranking, but he is one of the few players who can't be blocked one-on-one. He regularly beats double-teams and is an absolute force inside.


25. Steven Jackson, RB, Rams. The Rams will use a West Coast-style offense in '09 with a quarterback who never has played in the system and an inexperienced receiving unit. Jackson, a workhorse when healthy, will be more important than ever



http://www.sportingnews.com/yourturn...c.php?t=557654






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Old 06-07-2009, 07:17 PM   #2
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Nice to see Clady on that list.
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Old 06-07-2009, 07:17 PM   #3
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someone explain how peyton or tom brady had a better year than drew brees...
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Old 06-07-2009, 07:37 PM   #4
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someone explain how peyton or tom brady had a better year than drew brees...
They are projecting '09. You're welcome.
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Old 06-07-2009, 07:41 PM   #5
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I am confused, is this last year or predictions for next year?
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Old 06-07-2009, 07:45 PM   #6
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I am confused, is this last year or predictions for next year?


RealScouts, Sporting News' team of former NFL scouts, projects the 25 players it expects to be most dominant in the upcoming season.

It's important to understand a couple of things. First, there are only 25 players on the list. By the time injury replacements were named, 97 players qualified for the Pro Bowl last season. So RealScouts had to skim the cream of the cream. Second, the overall list represents the 25 players they expect to be the best in 2009. In other words, it's a projection, not a salute to the past.





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Old 06-07-2009, 08:10 PM   #7
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Shawne Merriman should not be on the list...otherwise pretty solid list.
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Old 06-07-2009, 08:10 PM   #8
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5 players from that list who won't be mentioned anywhere near the top 25 at the end of season:

1. James Harrison, he had his one magic year and will fade back to becoming a solid but not special player.

2. Shawne Merriman, an entire year out of football and a new knee, he is going to be playing tentative at times and with Olshansky gone he won't get the help he needs.

3. Albert Haynesworth, he comes from an attack first 1 gap role, he won't have the freedom or help he had in Tennessee.

4. Brian Urlacher, he is just not as fast as he used to be. He is not even the best MLB in the league.

5. Dwight Freeney, he is not even the best DE on his own team.
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Old 06-07-2009, 08:11 PM   #9
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I am still baffled why Denver doesn't try to get Peppers. Top 10 Defense player who can play DE or OLB. We could have had him.

Must be money vs mileage issue.
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Old 06-07-2009, 08:14 PM   #10
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So they didn't like Cutler's chances in Chicago.

Maybe he would have made the 'list' in McPoopyPants' offense.
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Old 06-07-2009, 08:18 PM   #11
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1. Disagree...Pitts scheme allows Harrison to be great. He is a product of the system but will have very good numbers again this year.
2. Agree...he won't be an all pro...he may go to pro bowl based on name recognition but I am going to call his over/under sack numbers at 9.
3. Disagree..Most dominating tackle in NFL. Tough to look at stats for him. I think he still dominates and you see teams like Giants, Phili, Dallas ypc go down when playing Wash.
4. Disagree...he is intelligent and a playmaker...not the best MLB in the NFL anymore but still elite..barely
5. Agree...he is burning out. I think he is still the best DE on his team and if he wasn't getting doubled team all the time his stats would look better. May still get his sacks but he isn't as disruptive as in the past.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gyldenlove View Post
5 players from that list who won't be mentioned anywhere near the top 25 at the end of season:

1. James Harrison, he had his one magic year and will fade back to becoming a solid but not special player.

2. Shawne Merriman, an entire year out of football and a new knee, he is going to be playing tentative at times and with Olshansky gone he won't get the help he needs.

3. Albert Haynesworth, he comes from an attack first 1 gap role, he won't have the freedom or help he had in Tennessee.

4. Brian Urlacher, he is just not as fast as he used to be. He is not even the best MLB in the league.

5. Dwight Freeney, he is not even the best DE on his own team.
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Old 06-07-2009, 09:09 PM   #12
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Ware is too high.

Witten isnt close to being a top-25 player. Dude's a TE, and isnt even the best TE in his division!

Reed is too high...should never be ranked ahead of Troy P.

Harrison is waaaay too high.

Haynesworth too low.

Shawn Merroid shouldnt be on this list at all.
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Old 06-07-2009, 09:30 PM   #13
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Brady is better than Manning. Any day.
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Old 06-07-2009, 09:49 PM   #14
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I am still baffled why Denver doesn't try to get Peppers. Top 10 Defense player who can play DE or OLB. We could have had him.

Must be money vs mileage issue.
Panthers refuse to trade him for anything less then 2 first round picks, that's why no offers for him. Teams only willing to part with 2 firsts for a starting QB or maybe someone like Peterson in minny.
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Old 06-07-2009, 10:04 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by gyldenlove View Post
5 players from that list who won't be mentioned anywhere near the top 25 at the end of season:

1. James Harrison, he had his one magic year and will fade back to becoming a solid but not special player.

2. Shawne Merriman, an entire year out of football and a new knee, he is going to be playing tentative at times and with Olshansky gone he won't get the help he needs.

3. Albert Haynesworth, he comes from an attack first 1 gap role, he won't have the freedom or help he had in Tennessee.

4. Brian Urlacher, he is just not as fast as he used to be. He is not even the best MLB in the league.

5. Dwight Freeney, he is not even the best DE on his own team.
Merriman needs Olshansky? Now that's golden!

Merriman went on IR and Igor turned into the invisible man last year.

Once again, SportingNews releases another horrible list. I wouldn't be surprised to see Peyton struggle this year with all the changes going on in Indy.
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Old 06-07-2009, 10:17 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gyldenlove View Post
5 players from that list who won't be mentioned anywhere near the top 25 at the end of season:

1. James Harrison, he had his one magic year and will fade back to becoming a solid but not special player.

2. Shawne Merriman, an entire year out of football and a new knee, he is going to be playing tentative at times and with Olshansky gone he won't get the help he needs.

3. Albert Haynesworth, he comes from an attack first 1 gap role, he won't have the freedom or help he had in Tennessee.

4. Brian Urlacher, he is just not as fast as he used to be. He is not even the best MLB in the league.

5. Dwight Freeney, he is not even the best DE on his own team.
Harrison had to wait his turn to get a shot as a starter since there were always talented players in front of him. He grabbed the opportunity and ran with it. There is no reason at all to expect a fall off from him.

There has never been anything tentative about Shawne Merriman's style of play. Drafting Larry English gives the Chargers flexibility when dealing with how much they want to use Merriman right away.

Tennessee's base defense has both DT's playing 2-gap assignments. He's a terror on pass downs as well. There is not a single defensive player in football who influences a game more than Haynesworth does. He should be higher on the list.

Dwight Freeney is probably the best pure pass rusher in the NFL. Robert Mathis? Was your entire list here a joke that nobody is getting?
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Old 06-07-2009, 10:44 PM   #17
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Ware is too high.

Witten isnt close to being a top-25 player. Dude's a TE, and isnt even the best TE in his division!

Reed is too high...should never be ranked ahead of Troy P.

Harrison is waaaay too high.

Haynesworth too low.

Shawn Merroid shouldnt be on this list at all.



He is the most productive TE in his division, and with the departure of Owens, he will figure to be a target more often.

Harrison made the pivotal play in the superbowl. He'll be on any top whatever list until he proves otherwise.

Reed is a better safety than Troy P.

Agree on the rest.

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Old 06-07-2009, 10:45 PM   #18
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Chargers defense is far from elite, but I guess the media decides these things and not play on the field.

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Old 06-07-2009, 10:46 PM   #19
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No Champ Bailey, Patrick Willis, or Brandon Marshall (who is better than Reggie Wayne) on the list and Reggie Wayne, Urlacher (who isn't better than Ray Lewis, Vilma, or Patrick Willis) and Steven Jackson are too high. And Drew Brees should be higher.
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Old 06-07-2009, 11:02 PM   #20
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Brady is better than Manning. Any day.
I don't think he is, and I don't think he ever has been.

The Patriots are the Patriots with or without Brady.

The Peyton Manning is the Colts.

Like him or hate him, dude has a brilliant football mind.

Edit: That's not to say that Brady doesn't have prettier numbers, its not all about the numbers when we're comparing player versus player.
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Old 06-07-2009, 11:04 PM   #21
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No Champ Bailey, Patrick Willis, or Brandon Marshall (who is better than Reggie Wayne) on the list and Reggie Wayne, Urlacher (who isn't better than Ray Lewis, Vilma, or Patrick Willis) and Steven Jackson are too high. And Drew Brees should be higher.
I agree that Steven Jackson probably doesn't deserve to be there, but he is very good.
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Old 06-07-2009, 11:05 PM   #22
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Jackson led the NFL in scrimmage yards per game. Ahead of LT, Adrian Peterson and Brian Westbrook.

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Old 06-08-2009, 12:00 AM   #23
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Jackson led the NFL in scrimmage yards per game. Ahead of LT, Adrian Peterson and Brian Westbrook.

Ah yeah, when was that? 2006? The homy can't stay on the field, even Matt Forte should be on this list ahead of him...
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Old 06-08-2009, 12:03 AM   #24
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No Champ Bailey, Patrick Willis, or Brandon Marshall (who is better than Reggie Wayne) on the list and Reggie Wayne, Urlacher (who isn't better than Ray Lewis, Vilma, or Patrick Willis) and Steven Jackson are too high. And Drew Brees should be higher.
This ... every word.
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Old 06-08-2009, 12:07 AM   #25
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Ah yeah, when was that? 2006? The homy can't stay on the field, even Matt Forte should be on this list ahead of him...

Maybe. Considering the team he plays for the fact he breaks 1000 yards in 12 games is fairly impressive.


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