Unless you’re a fan of the NBA or NHL playoffs, or even MLB, this time of year is tough for football fans. While everyone was watching the Chicago Bulls vs. Atlanta Hawks game Sunday night (happy belated Mothers day), I was checking out the NFL Network’s top 100 for 2011, as voted on by the players. So far they’ve gone through the 80-100 ranked players, with no Giants yet to break the countdown. Some names that have come off the board so far are the likes of McNabb, TO, Josh Freeman and Darren McFadden. I wanted to put together a list of the Giants that SHOULD make the countdown:
Chris Snee RG, 8 year pro, 3 time pro bowler (2 starts) and is considered one of the top guards in the NFL. At first, critics were a little leery of the Tom Coughlin’s son in law issue, but he quickly answered those concerns by becoming the anchor on the oline. Chris Snee looks to have many more years at this high level of production with no signs of slow down or injury.
Justin Tuck, DE, 7 year pro, 2 time pro bowler, the former 3rd round pick is a nightmare to any quarterback. Tuck is extremely athletic and has the ability to play every position along the line and is a mismatch for any offensive linemen trying to stop him. One of his most memorial moments is his sack, fumble on Tom Brady during Super Bowl 42 just before halftime. Justin Tuck has 17 forced fumbles and 40.5 (11.5 in ’10 season alone) career sacks.
Osi Umenyiora, DE, 9 year pro, 2 time pro bowler, all you have to do is ask the likes of Donovan McNabb and Jay Cutler on what they think of Osi. After a couple down years (recovering from an ACL injury), we started to see the old Osi in 2010. With 11.5 sacks and displaying the same quickness coming off the edge that had him once considered one of the top defensive ends. Had 10 forced fumbles in 2010, giving him 28 career FF’s. Expect another double digit sack season in 2011 especially with the d-line continuing to be extremely nasty.
Antrel Rolle, S, 6 year pro, 2 time pro bowler, even though Rolle had some off the field, ummm “questionable” comments about the team to the media, Antrel is still considered one of the top safeties in the NFL. Prior to joining the Giants, Rolle was known as a hard hitting sure handed stud for the Cardinals. The Giants already knowing his reputation gave him a mega contract and had a good first season with Big Blue. With another year in the system the Giants are expecting for him to continue to make an impact.
Hakeem Nicks, WR, the 3 year pro is a young electric receiver that has seemed to fill the hole of a deep threat created by Burress’ absence. The only thing that has held back Nicks is Nicks himself. Last season he put up over 1,000 yards, and 11 td’s, even though he missed 3 full games. Hakeem fought through various injuries, including to his foot, which limited his production. If healthy I’d guess he would have reached the 1,300 yard, 15 td mark. I’m not 100% sure he’ll make the list, but if rookie Mike Williams WR of the Bucs can make the list there is NO reason Nicks should be held off.
Eli Manning, QB, 8 year pro, 1 time pro bowler, 1 time SB MVP, Eli probably deserves a place in the HOF of handing all types of critics. Manning has over 20K passing yards and has back to back 4000 yard seasons. Eli had over 30 td’s last year, but the biggest stat everyone focuses on from the 2010 season is his 25 int’s. Now, some interceptions were his mistakes, but, many were unluckily tipped off receivers hands. Also, Eli operated much of the second half of the year with back up receivers and guys off the street with Nicks and Smith going down. Eli certainly doesn’t get the credit for how he’s grown into legit top end quarterback. It will definitely help Eli in that he owns a Super Bowl ring and MVP trophy with the NFL network list. I expect Eli to have another great season with considerably fewer picks.
Potential other Giants making the list-
Ahmad Bradshaw RB
Corey Webster, CB