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Medford Bronco
12-12-2007, 06:09 PM
Unsung Players in the NFL

There are a lot of unsung players in the NFL as they are overshadowed by stars on their team but are instrumental in their teams success. Chester Taylor of the Minnesota Viking is overshadowed (rightly so to a point) by the super phenom Andrian Peterson (1200 yards rushing and 10 TDs). Taylor very quietly has had a very good season so far rushing for 716 yards has a 5.3 ypc and has scored 7 TDS. Taylor last week ran for 101 yards last week vs SF in a 27-7 win and Peterson only has 3 yards rushing. Taylor also last season for a Minny team that can not throw the ball that well, ran for 1216 yards, 6 Tds and caught another 42 passes. If the Vikings want to continue on their current hot streak and make the Wild Card in the NFC, Taylor must still help Peterson by being a good change of pace back and able to fill in at any moment if Peterson is still banged up, which after 3 yards rushing vs a bad SF team, might still be the case.

Ryan Grant (an undrafted free agent) of the Green Bay Packers has been a Godsend to a team that for the first 7 games, struggled to run the ball. Grant has only been a starter since week 8 and has racked up 744 yards rushing, a 5.0 ypc and has scored 5 Tds in the last 5 weeks. Favre is obviously a leader of the Packers but Grant has helped take some of the pressure of Green Bay and expecting to only be a pass team. Most teams that win in the NFL, usually have at least some sort of balance and the emergence of Grant, this has happened with Green Bay.

Before 2007, Ernest Graham of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers never had more than 28 carries in his NFL career. This year he had filled in admirably for the injured Cadillac Williams and Michael Pittman. He has rushed for 798 yards a 4.2 ypc and 9 tds. He has also added 42 catches out of the backfield in Jon Grudens West Coast Offense. Most people worried about the Bucs running game when the injuries hit, but Graham has helped them lead the NFC South with a great chance to be in the playoffs come January.

When one thinks of the Jacksonville Jaguars, you usually think of a really stout defense that stops the run and causes lots of turnovers. Next I think of their QB David Garrard who only has 1 pick on the season to go with 13 Td passes. But to me the true unsung player on the Jags is the often injured Fred Taylor. In 2007 Taylor is quietly having one of his best seasons he has ever had. He has run for 944 yards and 3 Tds. Alon with Maurice Jones-Drew 655 yards rushing, 4.5 ypc and 8 td, to go along with 29 more catches, the Jags have a very good running game to go along with their very good defense. I think the Jags as a whole are a very good team that runs under the radar quite easily. The Pats, Colts, Steelers and Chargers get most of the press but to me the Jags are right behind the Cots in being a threat to super team NE.

Denver Broncos backup TE Tony Scheffler has made a living making tough 3rd down catches from Jay Cutler. So far this year, Sheff has caught 33 passes and 3 TDs. Most of Sheffs production in the last few years has been with Cutler. Before Cutler started in week 12 vs Seattle last year, Sheff has 6 catches and 0 tds. In the last 5 games he caught 12 passes and 4 TDs to finish off 2006. Sheff missed the first 4 games of 2007, but has picked it up recently. He looks more and more comfortable in the Denver offense and I predict will be a factor on their Thursday Night game this week at Houston.

Lastly Kevin Faulk of the Patriots is only one of a handful of players on their team that has been with all 3 Super Bowl teams. Faulk does not carry the ball much but year in and year out, is very good at getting the tough 3rd down catch for Tom Brady. Faulk has caught 35 passes this year and usually gets around 40 per season as strictly a 3rd down player. Also he is HUGE in protecting Brady in obvious blitzing situations. He did catch the game winning TD in a big come from behind victory over the Colts 24-20 in early November. Faulk will outlast more talented players because of his work ethic and desire to succeed.

I hope you have enjoyed a few of these unsung players and feel free to suggest anyone else for my list.

King87
12-12-2007, 06:45 PM
Eric Steinbach of the Browns and Joe Thomas of the Browns need to get some love as well. As much as I dislike that team and their fans they need some more love. Having your QB stand upright usually helps if your team wants to pass the ball.

Another unsung hero is Jeff Saturday for the Colts. Ogden, Jones, Hutchinson, and sometimes even Orlando Pace get more credit than Saturday but Center is the hardest position to play on the offensive line. This guy has been the best offensive lineman that the Colts have had for years. Considering how good Manning's line has been that is really important to me.

Here is one from the Bengals team, and without him we wouldn't have won a single game. The most underrated player in the entire NFL is T.J. Houshmanzadeh. 96 TDs, 11 TDs, Almost 1k yards this guy has been amazing for years. This year he has been playing just as well as any WR (yes that includes TO and Moss). Chad Johnson gets a lot more of the headlines (makes sense since he is going to be a Hall of Famer and has led the AFC in receiving for the past 4 years in a row) but TJ is just as good as any of those guys.


I would also state that Greg Jennings, Donald Driver, and Aaron Kampman need a LOT more love. Favre is playing great this year, but how many of his big plays are made because his WR catches the ball and just starts running down the field? The answer is, A LOT! Clearly this team cannot survive without Favre, but his entire team is playing insane. Kampman is obviously a DE and not a WR, but his 11 sacks and constant pressuring of the QB allows their defense to play man to man a lot.

Retired_Member_001
12-13-2007, 06:28 AM
Eric Steinbach of the Browns and Joe Thomas of the Browns need to get some love as well. As much as I dislike that team and their fans they need some more love. Having your QB stand upright usually helps if your team wants to pass the ball.

Another unsung hero is Jeff Saturday for the Colts. Ogden, Jones, Hutchinson, and sometimes even Orlando Pace get more credit than Saturday but Center is the hardest position to play on the offensive line. This guy has been the best offensive lineman that the Colts have had for years. Considering how good Manning's line has been that is really important to me.

Here is one from the Bengals team, and without him we wouldn't have won a single game. The most underrated player in the entire NFL is T.J. Houshmanzadeh. 96 TDs, 11 TDs, Almost 1k yards this guy has been amazing for years. This year he has been playing just as well as any WR (yes that includes TO and Moss). Chad Johnson gets a lot more of the headlines (makes sense since he is going to be a Hall of Famer and has led the AFC in receiving for the past 4 years in a row) but TJ is just as good as any of those guys.


I would also state that Greg Jennings, Donald Driver, and Aaron Kampman need a LOT more love. Favre is playing great this year, but how many of his big plays are made because his WR catches the ball and just starts running down the field? The answer is, A LOT! Clearly this team cannot survive without Favre, but his entire team is playing insane. Kampman is obviously a DE and not a WR, but his 11 sacks and constant pressuring of the QB allows their defense to play man to man a lot.

Yes but all the guys in your list DO get recognition. The guys in Medfords list get NO recognition. I would agree with Joe Thomas though, he is someone who gets next to no recognition and he's a very good tackle.

Something to remember as well King87 is that Medford's list isn't an in depth look at the Top 50 underrated players, it's a look at the sunsung heroes at the moment.

Good article Med! :salute:

Medford Bronco
12-13-2007, 07:19 AM
Yes but all the guys in your list DO get recognition. The guys in Medfords list get NO recognition. I would agree with Joe Thomas though, he is someone who gets next to no recognition and he's a very good tackle.

Something to remember as well King87 is that Medford's list isn't an in depth look at the Top 50 underrated players, it's a look at the sunsung heroes at the moment.

Good article Med! :salute:

Thanks Wookie, I really appreciate it.

Originally I had Jason Witten on the list as well and then he goes and catches 15 balls so I had to remove him. lol

Maybe 4 weeks ago Witten could have been on it but not now. lol

King pointed out good players but only Thomas is unsung, the rest you hear about esp TJ whosyourmamma lol :laugh:

King87
12-13-2007, 01:26 PM
Thanks Wookie, I really appreciate it.

Originally I had Jason Witten on the list as well and then he goes and catches 15 balls so I had to remove him. lol

Maybe 4 weeks ago Witten could have been on it but not now. lol

King pointed out good players but only Thomas is unsung, the rest you hear about esp TJ whosyourmamma lol :laugh:

Most of the guys on your list have gotten plenty of love on ESPN. Garrad,and Grant have gotten plently of love and Graham is not a unknown name this year because he is helping the Bucs in a large way. If the guys on my list get to much love to count than pretty much everyone on your list would be DQed barring Scheffler.

Medford Bronco
12-13-2007, 02:48 PM
Most of the guys on your list have gotten plenty of love on ESPN. Garrad,and Grant have gotten plently of love and Graham is not a unknown name this year because he is helping the Bucs in a large way. If the guys on my list get to much love to count than pretty much everyone on your list would be DQed barring Scheffler.

Its all a matter of perception King. I perceive my list to be unsung and as far as Jax goes the most unsung is Fred Taylor and not the rest, they are just more for reference,

Its fun to discuss rationally and I apprecaite that.

Faulk gets little love remember is Brady, Moss, Welker, Stallworth, Asante Samuel, Vrablel and many others before him IMO

he is better than overrated Lawrence Maroney IMO

King87
12-13-2007, 04:11 PM
Its all a matter of perception King. I perceive my list to be unsung and as far as Jax goes the most unsung is Fred Taylor and not the rest, they are just more for reference,

Its fun to discuss rationally and I apprecaite that.

Faulk gets little love remember is Brady, Moss, Welker, Stallworth, Asante Samuel, Vrablel and many others before him IMO

he is better than overrated Lawrence Maroney IMO

Maroney is not overrated at all, it is hard to be overrated when no one talks about you. Faulk is a decent player with the right skill set in the right system. Faulk got love in the earlier Patriot years and does not get as much as he should now. The issue is that Faulk is about the 15th best player on that team, I don't even know if he would start on half the teams in the NFL.

I think most of the guys on your team get plenty of credit. And if you go by the credit they get when compared to that of their teammates then a lot of the guys on my list become far more "unsung" than those on yours Med. I strongly disagree with your list, but I do appreciate the article itself. If you didn't write it I couldn't complain about how wrong it is =p

Medford Bronco
12-14-2007, 10:51 AM
Maroney is not overrated at all, it is hard to be overrated when no one talks about you. Faulk is a decent player with the right skill set in the right system. Faulk got love in the earlier Patriot years and does not get as much as he should now. The issue is that Faulk is about the 15th best player on that team, I don't even know if he would start on half the teams in the NFL.

I think most of the guys on your team get plenty of credit. And if you go by the credit they get when compared to that of their teammates then a lot of the guys on my list become far more "unsung" than those on yours Med. I strongly disagree with your list, but I do appreciate the article itself. If you didn't write it I couldn't complain about how wrong it is =p

come to Boston, most talk about Maroney or did earlier in the year on how he was going to run for 1200 yards

Faulk never got much love here, trust me this place overblows everyting
so I would remember if Faulk got recoginition.

We can disagree, that is what makes life not boring :beer:

Watchthemiddle
12-14-2007, 01:57 PM
Good work Med, and I firmly believe that in no time at all Sheff will get his credit.

He has got to be one of the most athletic TE's I have ever seen in the NFL.

That TD last night was all him. I just hope he can stay healthy.

But, then again he could be overshadowed by Marshall. Oh well, if thats the case thats a good thing. We have two of the most athletic guys on the field catching footballs. What a treat.

King87
12-14-2007, 03:09 PM
come to Boston, most talk about Maroney or did earlier in the year on how he was going to run for 1200 yards

Faulk never got much love here, trust me this place overblows everyting
so I would remember if Faulk got recoginition.

We can disagree, that is what makes life not boring :beer:

And if you go to Cincinnati people will sing the praises Rudi Johnson...........I am not really sure why but they will. A lot of fans are homers Med, some people just like to watch their team and their players are always amazing to them. Hell, at this point almost anyone would look amazing on the Patriots.

Cleveland Rocks
12-14-2007, 05:48 PM
Joe Thomas

Guy has played amazing and Eric Steinbach gets all the credit. Should be Joe Thomas - NOT Stenbach.

King87
12-14-2007, 06:29 PM
Joe Thomas

Guy has played amazing and Eric Steinbach gets all the credit. Should be Joe Thomas - NOT Stenbach.

Steinbach has played very well too. Your line would not be as good without Steinbach Charlie.

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