Fitz, Wilson, and Dockett Make Fox Sports’ List

First, let me inform the Cardinals Gabs readers that I’ve very recently returned from a two week trip to Greece.  I was, for the most part, unplugged from the rest of the world for the majority of the time.  As such, it’ll take me a few days to get back in the fold, for which I apologize.  In the meantime, here’s something to chew on. 

Fox Sports has recently posted a Top 100 Players in the NFL list.   The Cardinals put up a respectable showing with three players making the cut.

  • 89.  DT, Darnell Dockett (3rd of 3 defensive tackles on the list)
  • 71.  S, Adrian Wilson (6th of 7 safeties on the list)
  • 6.    WR, Larry Fitzgerald (1st of 15 wide receivers on the list)

Considering that there’s only three DTs on the list, Fox Sports thinks very highly of Dockett.  Only Albert Haynesworth (56)  and Kevin Williams (29) outranked the outspoken Darnell at the DT position.  Perhaps the honor bestowed is a bit undeserved due to position labelling.  First, Dockett isn’t really a DT anymore; he’s a DE.  Second, Haynesworth may not be a DT anymore; the Redskins plan to move him to NT.  Finally, the list breaks defensive linemen into DE, DT, and NT, which makes Dockett’s ranking as one of three DTs on the list seem like more of an achievement than it really is.  It may be more accurate to note that Dockett is 11th of 12 defensive lineman on the list, which is still an achievement.  Consider, however, that Dockett may not even be the best DE on the Cardinals this year.  Calais Campbell should have a monster year after a breakout season last year.

On the flip side, I think Wilson should have been ranked higher than 71.  He’s a beast that completely changes the Cardinals entire defense.  There are very few defensive players, let alone safeties, that can accomplish what Wilson does on a game by game basis.  His physical attributes combined with his athleticism puts him in rare company.

During the “jail break” offseason that experts say will cripple the Cards, Arizona lost two players on the list.

  • 82. ILB, Karlos Dansby, Dolphins
  • 74. WR, Anquan Boldin, Ravens

I think the Dansby ranking seems just about right.   This should provide Cardinals fans even more comfort considering Dansby’s the highest paid linebacker in NFL history, but there are 15 linebackers on the list that are considered better than Dansby right now.

I believe Boldin’s ranking should be higher, but the competition in front of him is pretty stiff.  In addition, Boldin’s injury issues may have dropped him a few spots. When he’s healthy, however, I believe he’s clearly better than (70) Calvin Johnson and (62) Sydney Rice, but the rest of the list is a hard sell; take a look:

  • 54. Wes Welker, Patriots
  • 53. DeSean Jackson, Eagles
  • 52. Greg Jennings, Packers
  • 35. Reggie Wayne, Colts
  • 28. Randy Moss, Vikings
  • 27. Steve Smith, Panthers
  • 16. Andre Johnson, Texans
  • 6.   Larry Fitzgerald, Cardinals

I also believe that Reggie Wayne’s ranking is too high.  If you put him with any quarterback other than Manning, his receptions, TDs, and yards would drop sharply.  In terms of pure talent and playmaking ability, I think Welker, Jackson, and Jennings should be ranked higher than Wayne.

The highest paid safety in the NFL history, Antrel Rolle, was not one of the seven safties that made the list.  If Rolle doesn’t make some big plays this year or even regresses a little, the NY fans will be calling for his head.  Good luck, Antrel.


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