Tag Archives: Larry Fitzgerald

THE NFL PLAYERS I’D TRUST THE MOST

Jay C. Brandriet

7/27/18

This is the goal. I need to pick 53 NFL players to fill out a roster. I have to get ten guys for a practice squad. The pool of athletes I’m choosing from is from 1980 to 2018. Let’s say they are playing a season for me, and the stakes couldn’t be higher. This is not a list of the 63 best players I’ve seen. I’m trying to build a team. Here are the NFL player’s I’d trust the most.

 

OFFENSE

 

QUARTERBACKS

Tom Brady/Joe Montana/Aaron Rodgers/Steve Young

I rank Elway higher than Young all time. In this case I’m mixing it up with a lefty, and a beyond scrimmage runner like Steve Young. Rodgers can be my “hail mary” guy. I would have used John there as well.

 

RUNNING BACKS/FULLBACKS

Walter Payton/Marshall Faulk/Terrell Davis/LaDainian Tomlinson/Marcus Allen

Payton is the best football player on this team. T.D. and L.T. can carry the load. Faulk stretches the field and will excel in the slot. Marcus Allen can play full back and gets it done in short yardage.

Allen was an elegant glider. He could do all the dirty work as well.

 

 

 

 

 

 

WIDE RECEIVERS

Jerry Rice/Randy Moss/Calvin Johnson/Michael Irvin/Larry Fitzgerald

The first three are the best I’ve seen do it. Irvin is the groups motivator. Fitzgerald beat out Cris Carter by an inch.

 

TIGHT ENDS

Tony Gonzalez/Rob Gronkowski/Jason Witten 

Witten will also help make up for not having a traditional full back.

 

OFFENSIVE LINE 

Larry Allen/John Hannah/Anthony Munoz/Bruce Matthews/Jonathan Ogden/Gary Zimmerman/Randall McDaniel/Dermontti Dawson

 

SPECIALISTS

Devin Hester/Mark Kelso/Adam Vinatieri/Shane Lechler

Hester could play all three phases of the game if needed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

COACHES

Bill Parcells/Bill Walsh/Bill Belichick/Jimmy Johnson

 

DEFENSE

 

DEFENSIVE LINE

Reggie White/J.J. Watt/Warren Sapp/Bruce Smith/Randy White/Aaron Donald/Michael Strahan/Julius Peppers/Ted Washington

Peppers will block your field goal attempt. I needed a classic plugger, and thought of going with Vince Wilfork. Ted Washington will provide that instead at 6’5″, 365 lbs.

 

LINEBACKERS

Ray Lewis/Lawrence Taylor/Derrick Brooks/DeMarcus Ware/Patrick Willis/Luke Kuechly

Lewis and Brooks can play that rugged middle role. Taylor and Ware will kill it off the edge. Willis and Kuechly give me the modern mobile backers.

Miller jumps off the TV and on to quarterbacks. He allows me to pass on Doleman, Manley, and Wilber Marshall.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DEFENSIVE BACKS

Deion Sanders/Darrelle Revis/Champ Bailey/Aeneas Williams/Ronde Barber

Ronnie Lott/Ed Reed/Troy Polamalu/Rod Woodson

These dudes are impressive. They can all play the entire defensive backfield. Most versatile unit on this trust squad. They can block and tackle on special teams. Some can play running back and receiver. If Reed touches the ball, he’s magic. Barber can cover the Welker types. Lott and Polamalu can play spot linebacker duty, and a couple can throw.

Troy was a game wrecking safety. Clutch plays became a habit for him.

 

 

 

 

 

 

PRACTICE SQUAD

Peyton Manning/Sterling Sharpe/Tony Boselli/Mark Bavaro

 Derrick Thomas/Darrell Green/Mike Singletary/Charles Woodson

Von Miller/Morten Anderson 

I need Green’s speed and Singletary’s voice. Woodson is All-Pro at everything. Bavaro is just a brawler you want on your side.

I’m curious which players you would trust.

 

Jay C. Brandriet

 

 

 

 

 

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THE PRO FOOTBALL HALL OF FAME IS ABOUT TO HAVE A SERIOUS LOG JAM: WR EDITION

Jay C. Brandriet

12/4/17

The old saying has often been “too many guy’s get into the Hall of Fame”. The new truth is, not enough players are getting that call. We have so much more information about today’s athletes and the history of the NFL than ever before. An average of six men per year have been inducted over the past 20 seasons. That comes across as a reasonable number. If you look behind the curtain, a log jam is taking place. Looking at the category of receiver only, I think this group of retired players all have a compelling case to be in.

Proudly from the University of Utah, Smith was a punt and kick return star in his early NFL days.

 

 RETIRED RECEIVERS THAT DESERVE TO BE IN THE HALL: 

 

RANDY MOSS: “Freak”.  Legend.  His go up and get it, and ball skills were a ten. Many fans would say Moss is the most talented wide receiver they have ever seen.

 

TERRELL OWENS: His initial power off the line of scrimmage was intense. It’s obvious T. O.  is a  Hall of Famer( just ask him)! Owens work ethic, skill, and level of dominance attained are all top shelf historically.

 

CALVIN JOHNSON: Johnson was the ultimate specimen to ever play wide receiver. I remember a few late game situations where “Megatron” was triple covered by Cowboys players. Each time the ball was in the air, it felt like the odds were 60 percent in his favor…. Calvin caught all three of them.

 

DREW PEARSON:  Pearson was the NFC’s best receiver in the 1970’s. He is widely considered one of the greatest clutch players in football history.

 

CLIFF BRANCH: An elegant yards per catch guy, Branch is the only Raider to play on all three title teams. At the time of his retirement he ranked number one in total post season catches and yardage.

 

HINES WARD: His Pittsburgh Steelers team records speak volumes. Ward has two rings and a Super Bowl MVP. His niche of being an all time great blocker helps get him in.

 

ISAAC BRUCE: His 80 yard TD grab was the go ahead score in Super Bowl 34. Bruce does not have near the name he should for how awesome he was. He’s like his generations Art Monk.

 

STERLING SHARPE: Sharpe did not miss a game in his seven years. His career ended after a serious neck injury following a season where he scored 18 times. At his best, Sharpe was in the same class as Irvin, Carter, Reed, and Tim Brown.

 

TORRY HOLT: His routes were precise and his hands were like football magnets. From 2000-2009 Holt’s 868 receptions and 12, 594 yards are the highest totals, for any decade in league history.

 

REGGIE WAYNE: Reggie was a steady pro who likely left a HOF resume on the field. He played in 21 post season games. At the time of his retirement, no player had more receiving yardage versus Bill Belichick led teams.

 

ANQUAN BOLDIN: I watched every snap of his first pro game at Detroit. He had 217 beast like yards. Boldin was eventually the go to guy on a world champion. He played a month after having seven plates and 40 screws put in his face.

 

STEVE SMITH: Nobody wore that chip on the shoulder better than Steve Smith. He was so fierce, and was one of the top playmakers of his generation. He’d catch it, pivot the other direction and it would look like he was part of the field.

 

ANDRE JOHNSON: Some guys should simply be awarded in the category of “what was your level while you played”? Johnson was elite at his job. Three times he had 1, 500 plus yard seasons.

 

RECEIVERS THAT STILL DESERVE A LOOK:

Chad Johnson

Rod Smith

Gary Clark

Harold Carmichael

Henry Ellard

Otis Taylor

Wes Welker

Larry Fitzgerald will be a first ballot guy when he’s done. Guys like Antonio Brown can think ahead to how the yellow jacket may fit them. The game will continue to be full of volume passing totals. More receivers are getting in this long line to be recognized. Who else deserves to be on my list?