On Thursday, Pete Prisco of CBS Sports put out his lazy, hackneyed “overrated-underrated” list, and it appears that ESPN is doing a similar series, as NFC East blogger Dan Graziano has put out his underrated list (although I wouldn’t call Dan lazy or hackneyed). I would assume Dan’s overrated list is coming today.
A recap of their work:
Prisco’s overrated: Cowboys – Andre Gurode. Eagles – Asante Samuel. Giants – Antrel Rolle. Redskins – DeAngelo Hall.
Prisco’s underrated: Cowboys – Doug Free. Eagles – LeSean McCoy. Giants – Hakeem Nicks. Redskins – Ryan Torain.
Graziano’s underrated: Cowboys – Jay Ratliff. Eagles – Jamaal Jackson. Giants – Kevin Boss. Redskins – London Fletcher.
Overrated – Mike Jenkins – It’s no secret that Mike Jenkins had a bad 2010 season, but I don’t think people really appreciate exactly how bad. In 2010, according to Football Outsiders, opposing QB’s threw at him a lot (80 times), and averaged 10.5 yards per pass attempt when they targeted him. That was tied for 3rd worst in the NFL. That’s gross. Add in the fact that Jenkins is gutless, and I think this one is a no-brainer.
Underrated – Doug Free – Prisco got this one right. Look at the players Free had to match up against last year, and somehow he only gave up 5 sacks. People are considering moving him to RT, and throwing the rookie into the fire at LT? Really?
(Eagles, Giants, and Redskins after the jump)…
Overrated – Jason Avant – Avant is most certainly a good #3, plays his ass off on special teams, has excellent hands, and everyone loves the guy. But I often feel that Eagles fans have this weird perception that he’s irreplaceable. He’s not, by any stretch.
Underrated – Asante Samuel – Prisco has Samuel as overrated – I think that’s utterly absurd, and would question if Prisco even watched Samuel play in 2010. When people talk about the best corners in the NFL, it ‘s always Darrelle Revis and Nnamdi Asomugha as 1A and 1B in whatever order. But based upon the 2010 season, Samuel is right there with those two guys.
Overrated – Shaun O’Hara – Can’t argue with Prisco too much on choosing Rolle. Rolle’s an average NFL safety and is paid like an elite one. And this has nothing to do with his play on the field, but it doesn’t help when Rolle compared booing players to booing soldiers coming home from war. But O’Hara is wildly overrated. I’m sorry, but when you only play 6 games (poorly, no less) and you make the Pro Bowl, you should be the poster child for this list. This one’s a layup.
Underrated – Terrell Thomas – Not sure what Graziano sees in Boss. Boss is a JAG (Just A Guy). Nothing more. I can think of 4 TE’s in the NFC East alone I’d take over Boss. Without looking, I’d guess I could find 20 in the NFL. I’d give the nod here to Terrell Thomas, who quiet just goes out and makes plays – 5 INT’s, 4 forced fumbles, a block, and a sack in 2010. I think most people see Corey Webster as the Giants’ best corner. I’m not so sure about that.
Overrated – DeAngelo Hall – Remember what we said about Mike Jenkins being tied for 3rd worst in the league giving up 10.5 yards per pass attempt his way? Well, guess who he was tied with. DING DING DING – D Hall! In fairness to Hall, he does make plays – His mugging of Tashard Choice at the end of the first half Week 1 when he stripped the football and ran it back for an end-of-the-half score was a back-breaker, and the Redskins probably don’t win that game if he doesn’t make that play. Still, the occasional big play doesn’t make up for the generally terrible job he does covering receivers.
Underrated – London Fletcher – Can’t argue with Graziano and Prisco for their choices of London Fletcher and Ryan Torain, respectively. Torian is the “Look at me, I’m picking a guy nobody’s thinking about” choice. But in the last decade or so, there may not be a player in the league more under-appreciated than London Fletcher, so I’m going to give him the “Underrated lifetime achievement award” here. Look at Fletcher’s stats over the past decade+ and compare them to Ray Lewis’ stats. I’m certainly not saying Fletcher is on Ray Lewis’ level, but he’s really not that far off. Even as people have been calling Fletcher underrated for years, I still don’t think he gets his due. Nothing wrong with making the obvious choice sometimes.