“No respect, I tell ya.”
The late, great Rodney Dangerfield said it best, and it is all I can think about now that we know where Tampa Bay Buccaneers LB Lavonte David falls on the NFL Network’s Top 100 list for 2014.
Since Lavonte David’s arrival in the NFL, he has been snubbed of the following honors that he has earned:
- 2013 NFL Pro Bowl
- 2014 NFL Pro Bowl
- 2012 Defensive Rookie of the Year
- 2013 Defensive Player of the Year
- A spot on the NFL’s Top 100 List of 2013
And here I was, knowing that the NFL had a golden opportunity to make it up to THE best outside linebacker in all of pro football, and yet they still screwed the pooch.
With only numbers 31-100 having been announced so far, David falls behind players such as Ben Roethlisberger, Kyle Williams, Aldon Smith and Philip Rivers. Or, to put it in more direct terms, two quarterbacks entering the downside of their careers, and two overhyped defensive linemen.
They did, however, get something right: David comes in ranked two spots ahead of former Buccaneer teammate, Darrelle Revis. While Revis had a great season in his own right for the Bucs, Lavonte David showed up on every area of the field. His game is what stood out the most in regards to Tampa Bay’s defense.
Vincent Jackson has also made the list at No. 44.
Going back to David, another sign of disrespect has reared its ugly head on the NFL’s Top 100 website.
Here, you can clearly see that Lavonte David’s No. 35 thumbnail is missing, along with Mr. “Cry Me A” Rivers.
Obviously, this goes way deeper than the football field.
With all jokes aside, it really does feel as if there is another force that is impacting how the rest of the league views Tampa Bay’s golden linebacker. It could be that Tampa is a much smaller NFL market than others, and that respect doesn’t come easy when you are playing for a losing squad.
But still: when you see greatness, you have to recognize it.
And ladies and gentlemen of The Pewter Plank jury, I have seen greatness!
This is what it looks like (courtesy of NFL.com):
Plank Krewe—we must stand together in our fight to get Lavonte David recognized for his accomplishments! First team All-Pro in 2013 was a great start, but according to this list, even a jury of his own peers doesn’t see what we’re seeing.
While the rest of the league blindly praises Luke Keuchly, let us rejoice in knowing who is truly better, and who only gets a small percentage of the respect.