Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

NFC South Bloggers Rank The Top 13 Players in the Division: Three Tampa Bay Buccaneers Make the List

The NFL has begun the announcement of their top 100 players of 2013, and I noted yesterday, I already disagree strongly with the ranking of Darrelle Revis. So I wanted to see if our friends in the NFC South agreed with these rankings, and we all decided to rank the NFC South separately and come up with our top players in the division. Chris Roling of our New Orleans Saints blog Who Dat Dish, and Ken Dye of Cat Crave (our Carolina Panthers site) both took the time to rank their top 13 players in the division, and I combined them with my rankings to provide to top 13 consensus rankings. Why 13? The NFC South is 1/8 of the NFL, and 13 is approximately 1/8 of 100, so this is cutting out all the other divisions and focusing the rankings on the teams in the NFC South only.

Without any further introduction, here’s the list:

So what are my three biggest takeaways from this list?
  • The Falcons are an extremely top-heavy team. An injury to a key player would be devastating to the Falcons, who seem to have woven a strong core in the passing game that might be ruined with one piece missing. Matt Ryan, Julio Jones, Roddy White, and Tony Gonzalez combine to form a dangerous passing attack, but if Ryan or Jones were to miss time, it would decrease the value of the others in a major way.
  • The Buccaneers are the only team without a quarterback on the list. That’s not surprising, but it does show the uphill battle it will be for Tampa Bay to succeed in this division. I was the lowest on Matt Ryan, as I don’t believe he is an elite NFL QB, but I agree that the three other QBs in the division are ahead of Josh Freeman at this moment. Freeman has a chance to change that in 2013…
  • Darrelle Revis is still underrated. I have him as the second best player in the division, behind only Drew Brees, but my fellow NFC South bloggers ranked him lower than I did, dragging down his ranking. I understand that Revis is coming off an injury, and I have had my doubts about him, but every indication I have seen leads me to believe that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers are getting the real Darrelle Revis in 2013 and beyond. The Darrelle Revis of 2011 is one of the five best players in the NFL, and might even be more important to his team than Drew Brees is. So I’m not ready to count him out just yet.


So what do you think, Bucs fans? What players do you feel should be higher? Which ones should be lower? Who is missing from the list? Let us know in the comments below.

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  • Carey M Carnes

    Weatherspoon of the falcons plays circles around keuchly. That whole list is jacked up.

    • LeoTPP

      I did not have Luke K. on my list at all. I think Lavonte is the best LB in the division, and Weatherspoon is certainly good, too.

      Gerald and Dashon both missed out, and I believe they could fight for spots, but it’s tough to deny the skill position players. Who would you take off the list?

      • Jason Scott

        steve smith

  • Robert McClure Mob

    Mike williams Tampa bay

  • JustFacts11 .

    Matt ryan may not be elite but their are only 4 elite qbs in the nfl. Ryan is a top 5-8 qb for sure. I’m not sure why you brought up ryan not being elite, he is the 2nd best qb in the division and head and SHOULDERS better then freeman.

    Schiano said he believes ryan is at that elite level….

    Schiano isn’t even sure if freeman should be a starter

    • LeoTPP

      To put Ryan up next to Brees implies he’s elite. All the other rankers had Ryan as the second best player in the division, and I don’t believe that’s the case. Julio is an elite WR, Revis is an Elite CB, and Tony G is an elite TE. All should be ahead of Ryan.

      • JustFacts11 .

        Ryan threw 4, 719 yards (top 5 amongst all qbs), 32 tds (top 5 amongst all qbs), 68.6 completion percentage (top 5 amongst all qbs), 99.1 qb rating (top 5 amongst all qbs). Not to mention ryan was the most ACCURATE qb in the nfl in 2012 with only 13.6 percent of his passes off target. Ryan also lead his team to a league best 13-3 record, and the #1 seed. He took his team to the nfccg where they came up 10 yards short of going to the superbowl. Ryan had the 2nd highest qb rating this postseason playing the top 2 defense and In that 49ers game Ryan threw 400 yards, 3tds and completed OVER 70 percent of his passes against the best defense in football (the same defense that embarrassed Rodgers the week before.). Keep in mind ryan did this with a BOTTOM 3 run game (29th in league) and BOTTOM 8 defense (24th in league). Ryan also leads the league in 4th qtr comebacks since 08, in fact with out so many of ryans late game heroics the falcons lose alot more then 3 games.

        As good as julio and tony are the falcons are still a playoff team without them. Ryan lead the falcons to 11-5 as a rookie and won roty in the process without julio or tony. Without ryan the falcons arent even .500 .

        The season ryan got injured is the season the falcons missed the playoffs. .

        I think it’s silly for you to rank revis (who didn’t even play in 2012) in front of a qb who had one of the best seasons of any qb in 2012. It makes you seem like either a blind homer or a ryan hater……maybe both.

        Sidenote- julio has potential to be the best but he is not currently the best. He is not above Roddy white..

        Maybe YOU dont consider ryan “elite” but many do, including tampa bays HEAD COACH
        Greg Schiano quote on Matt Ryan-
        “I think he’s in the elite status,” Schiano said. “I think he’s at that level. The kind of field command he has and the way he directs the operation. A lot of guys have big arms and there are a lot of guys that are mobile and all that, but it’s the way they lead, the commandership they have over their offense makes them elite.”

        • LeoTPP

          This wasn’t a “who was the best in 2012″ poll. It was who will be best in 2013.

          And Schiano can say whatever he wants. Matt Ryan is not elite at his position. He’s a very, very good quarterback who thrives in a strong system.

          • JustFacts11 .

            His system is the reason he was the most accurate qb in 2012?

            And if this is basesd on who 2013 predictions Ryan is in the correct spot. He threw 32 tds, over 4700+ and completed almost 70 percent of his passes in a brand new system with a brand new offensive coordinator. He gets better EVERY year and he could easily pass for 40 tds this year and 5k yards. And if you don’t consider a qb like that as one of the best players in the division then I don’t know what to say.

          • LeoTPP

            I never said he wasn’t one of the best players in the division. I just don’t think he’s the second best. That’s all. And if he can’t learn to put away the Buccaneers, he’ll be in for some trouble.

            He’s never throw for more than 2 scores against the Bucs, averages a pick per game, and has only gone over a 100 passer rating twice. And the Bucs D hasn’t been good since he entered the league. He has some work to do in terms of his clutch ability, as well.

            Stats can say whatever you want them to. My gut tells me Ryan is a very good QB with very good numbers. But not more than that.