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NFL Network’s signature offseason series is the “Top 100 Players” from the previous season. The list is decided by players, which of course makes for some interesting results — like in 2017, when J.J. Watt was included despite playing in only three games because of injury.
The ballots have gone out again, and that means there’s more suspect voting.
DeAndre Hopkins at No. 2?
On Wednesday, NFL Films tweeted a picture of one player’s ballot and asked for thoughts.
Our thought? It has to be an AFC South player. Which one? We may never know.
Instructions at the top of the ballot card say, “This is not a career retrospective, but a celebration of the best of the best in the NFL right now. Your list should start at #1 and end at #20 and should be filled out regardless of position. From your lists of 20, NFL Network will countdown the official players’ list of the 100 best players in the game today.”
This player started his ranking with the Houston Texans’ offensive duo of quarterback Deshaun Watson at No. 1 and receiver DeAndre Hopkins at No. 2.
While both are excellent players, are they the top two in the NFL right now?
At No. 3 is Seattle Seahawks QB Russell Wilson, at No. 4 is New England Patriots QB Tom Brady and at No. 5 is the current clubhouse leader for MVP, Baltimore Ravens QB Lamar Jackson.
Brady may get the Patriots to yet another Super Bowl, but even he would say he’s not one of the five best players in the league this season.
Marlon Mack though?
The rest of the list, as ordered, is interesting enough, but the giveaway for us that it’s an AFC South player’s ballot is at No. 19, where Indianapolis running back Marlon Mack is listed. Well, that and the fact that six players from the Texans and Colts are listed.
(This isn’t to say Mack is having a bad season, and we’re happy if he helped you to your fantasy playoffs. But he’s not one of the 20 best players in the NFL right now.)
Here’s Nos. 6-20 on this ballot, in case you can’t read the handwriting in the photo:
WR Odell Beckham Jr., Cleveland
QB Patrick Mahomes, Kansas City
LB Darius Leonard, Indianapolis
WR T.Y. Hilton, Indianapolis
LB Khalil Mack, Chicago
WR Julio Jones, Atlanta
QB Drew Brees, New Orleans
LB Bobby Wagner, Seattle
LB Justin Houston, Indianapolis
WR Tyreek Hill, Kansas City
CB Marlon Humphrey, Baltimore
S Minkah Fitzpatrick, Miami/Pittsburgh
WR Michael Thomas, New Orleans
RB Marlon Mack, Indianapolis
DL Aaron Donald, Los Angeles Rams
So who do you think wrote this ballot?
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