NFL Top 100 Players of 2023: Analysis

I berated the players for their crappy rankings in the Top 100 NFL Players of 2011 and people seemed to like that. I ran other critiques of the Top 100 NFL Players of 2012, the Top 100 NFL Players of 2013, the Top 100 NFL Players of 2014, the Top 100 NFL Players of 2015, the Top 100 NFL Players of 2016, the Top 100 NFL Players of 2017, the Top 100 NFL Players of 2018, the Top 100 NFL Players of 2019, the Top 100 NFL Players of 2020, the Top 100 NFL Players of 2021 and the Top 100 NFL Players of 2022. I’ve gotten many requests to keep doing this, so here we are.

I really find it amazing how NFL players can screw up these rankings. As I pointed out before, if you’re in an office, you and your other co-workers can probably rank the best employees and come to a smart consensus. NFL players, however, continuously bungle things like this, probably because many of them don’t watch film or pay attention to the other games. They ranked Michael Turner in the top 100 eleven years ago, yet the guy couldn’t even move. Seven years ago, Carson Palmer was 12th, Blake Bortles was 56th, and Chris Ivory was 78th! Here was my reaction:

OH MY GOD. CHRIS IVORY IS 78TH?!??!?! ARE YOU F***ING SERIOUS??? CHRIS IVORY… IS 78TH!?!??!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!??!?!

Six years ago, DeMarco Murray was voted in as the 31st-best player in the NFL. Yes, DeMarco Murray, the guy who lost his job during the year. The NFL players ranked Murray ahead of Kam Chancellor, Joey Bosa, Bobby Wagner, Trent Williams, and Jadeveon Clowney.

The following year, Case Keenum was 51st. Let me repeat that. Case Keenum was 51st. Here’s what I wrote:


The NFL players thought that Case Keenum was a better player than Philip Rivers. It was almost as bad in 2019, when Jared Goff was slotted in 32nd place. Yes, NFL players thought Goff was the 32nd-best player in the NFL. Like I said, these players have no clue.

The big screw-up in 2020 was Jimmy Garoppolo, who was somehow slotted at No. 43. Here were my thoughts:




I don’t think 2021 was as bad, but the players still put Ryan Tannehill at No. 83. And in 2022, they rated Mac Jones 85th. Really? Mac Jones, 85th?

Predictably, there were some very dumb choices in the NFL Top 100 Players of 2023. I’ve highlighted them, marking the underrated players in blue and overrated players in red.

NFL Top 100 Players of 2023: 100-91:

100. DeVonta Smith, WR, Eagles
99. DeMarcus Lawrence, DE, Cowboys
98. Tristan Wirfs, OT, Buccaneers
97. Harrison Smith, S, Vikings
96. Trevor Lawrence, QB, Jaguars
95. Jamaal Williams, RB, Saints
94. Trevor McLaurin, WR, Redskins
93. Eric Kendricks, LB, Chargers
92. Marlon Humphrey, CB, Ravens
91. Dalvin Cook, RB, Vikings

96. Trevor Lawrence: I find it amusing that the players from a year ago thought Mac Jones is better than Trevor Lawrence is now. What!?

95. Jamaal Williams: OMG JAMAAL WILLIAMS SCORED SO MANY TOUCHED DOWNS SO HE MUST BE GRATE OMG OMG OMG!!! Ugh. Come on. Damien Harris and LeGarrett Blount also scored a ton of touchdowns in one season. Did they deserve to be in the top 100?

93. Eric Kendricks: Do NFL players even pay attention? I mean, really. Eric Kendricks once belonged on this list, but he can barely move anymore.

91. Dalvin Cook: Oh yeah, Dalvin Cook is great. Except, his team cut him, and no one really wants to sign him all that much. Whoops.

NFL Top 100 Players of 2023: 90-81:

90. DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Titans
89. Marshon Lattimore, CB, Saints
88. Aidan Hutchinson, DE, Lions
87. Chris Lindstrom, G, Falcons
86. Justin Fields, QB, Bears
85. Laremy Tunsil, OT, Texans
84. Za’Darius Smith, DE, Browns
83. Terron Armstead, OT, Dolphins
82. Tua Tagovailoa, QB, Dolphins
81. Christian Wilkins, DT, Dolphins

After than 100-91 fiasco, this grouping isn’t so bad. You could argue against Tua Tagovailoa because he can’t stay healthy, but perhaps that’ll change this year.

NFL Top 100 Players of 2023: 80-71:

80. Mark Andrews, TE, Ravens
79. Dre Greenlaw, LB, 49ers
78. Talanoa Hufanga, S, 49ers
77. Geno Smith, QB, Seahawks
76. Tariq Woolen, CB, Seahawks
75. Trey Hendrickson, DE, Bengals
74. Garrett Wilson, WR, Jets
73. Budda Baker, S, Cardinals
72. Lamar Jackson, QB, Ravens
71. DeForest Buckner, DT, Colts

77. Geno Smith: In what world is Geno Smith about 20 spots better than Trevor Lawrence? Smith is coming off a great year, but come on.

76. Tariq Woolen: Did Pete Carroll pay off the players to vote for his guys? Tariq Woolen is coming off a good rookie year, but he’s not the 76th-best player in the NFL. Not yet, anyway.

NFL Top 100 Players of 2023: 70-61:

70. Joey Bosa, DE, Chargers
69. Matt Milano, LB, Bills
68. Zack Martin, G, Cowboys
67. Amon-Ra St. Brown, WR, Lions
66. Jared Goff, QB, Lions
65. Darius Slay, CB, Eagles
64. Aaron Jones, RB, Packers
63. Grady Jarrett, DT, Falcons
62. Bobby Wagner, LB, Seahawks
Deebo Samuel, CB, 49ers

70. Joey Bosa: Joey Bosa is one of the top edge rushers in the NFL, so he should be ranked higher than this. Then again, he has a dubious injury history.

68. Zack Martin: Martin is arguably the best guard in the NFL, so he should be much higher than this.

64. Aaron Jones: Aaron Jones owes most of his success to Aaron Rodgers. Let’s see how he does without him.

62. Bobby Wagner: Pete Carroll apparently paid for Bobby Wagner as well. Seriously though, what’s with these old linebackers being slotted in the top 100? Wagner deserved a spot in the top 50 once upon a time, but he’s way past his prime.

NFL Top 100 Players of 2023: 60-51:

60. Trevon Diggs, CB, Cowboys
59. Justin Simmons, S, Broncos
58. Jeffery Simmons, DT, Titans
57. Jordan Poyer, S, Bills
56. Dak Prescott, QB, Cowboys
55. Tony Pollard, RB, Cowboys
54. Brian Burns, DE/OLB, Panthers
53. Mike Evans, WR, Buccaneers
52. Jonathan Allen, DT, Redskins
51. Aaron Rodgers, QB, Jets

56. Dak Prescott: Dak Prescott led the NFL in interceptions last year, so what is he doing inside the top 60?

NFL Top 100 Players of 2023: 50-41:

50. Cameron Jordan, DE, Saints
49. Patrick Surtain, CB, Broncos
48. Haason Reddick, DE, Eagles
47. Cooper Kupp, WR, Rams
46. C.J. Mosley, LB, Jets
45. Cameron Hayward, DT, Steelers
44. Jaylen Waddle, WR, Dolphins
43. Demario Davis, LB, Saints
42. Kirk Cousins, QB, Vikings
41. Lane Johnson, OT, Eagles

50. Cameron Jordan: Here’s another example of an old player being ranked too high, solely based on past production. The Saints had a bottom-10 pressure rate in the NFL last year. Some of that was on Jordan, whose pass-rushing ability dimished. He was still a force against the run, but he’s now 34, so some regression was expected.

46. C.J. Mosley, LB, Jets: C.J Mosley, now 31, is always hurt. When he’s not hurt, he’s playing mediocre football. I don’t know why he’s so high in the top 100.

42. Kirk Cousins, QB, Vikings: Ugh, come on. Why is Kirk Cousins almost inside the top 40? Top 140, maybe, but not the top 40.

NFL Top 100 Players of 2023: 40-31:

40. Quinnen Williams, DT, Jets
39. Ja’Marr Chase, WR, Bengals
38. Khalil Mack, DE, Chargers
37. Jason Kelce, C, Eagles
36. Jalen Ramsey, CB, Dolphins
35. Christian McCaffrey, RB, 49ers
34. CeeDee Lamb, WR, Cowboys
33. Matthew Judon, DE, Patriots
32. Justin Herbert, QB, Chargers
31. Saquon Barkley, RB, Giants

I don’t see anything wrong with this list. I’m glad to see Jason Kelce finally getting some respect!

NFL Top 100 Players of 2023: 30-21:

30. Derwin James, S, Chargers
29. Nick Chubb, RB, Browns
28. Dexter Lawrence, DT, Giants
27. T.J. Watt, DE, Steelers
26. Jaire Alexander, CB, Packers
25. Derrick Henry, RB, Titans
24. Roquan Smith, LB, Ravens
23. Sauce Gardner, CB, Jets
22. A.J. Brown, WR, Eagles
21. Austin Ekeler, RB, Chargers

27. T.J. Watt: T.J. Watt is arguably the best defensive player in the NFL. The Steelers were 8-2 with him last year and 1-6 without him. How can he possibly be ranked outside of the top 10?

NFL Top 100 Players of 2021: 20-11:

20. Myles Garrett, DE, Browns
19. George Kittle, TE, 49ers
18. Minkah Fitzpatrick, S, Steelers
17. Maxx Crosby, DE, Raiders
16. Stefon Diggs, WR, Bills
15. Fred Warner, LB, 49ers
14. Trent Williams, OT, 49ers
13. Davante Adams, WR, Raiders
12. Josh Jacobs, RB, Raiders
11. Aaron Donald, DT, Rams

I have no significant issues with this group. Maybe Josh Jacobs, but he’s the reigning rushing champion.

NFL Top 100 Players of 2021: 10-1:

10. Chris Jones, DT, Chiefs
9. Micah Parsons, DE, Cowboys
8. Josh Allen, QB, Bills
7. Tyreek Hill, WR, Dolphins
6. Joe Burrow, QB, Bengals
5. Travis Kelce, TE, Chiefs
4. Nick Bosa, DE, 49ers
3. Jalen Hurts, QB, Eagles
2. Justin Jefferson, WR, Vikings
1. Patrick Mahomes, QB, Chiefs

I don’t hate anything in the top 10. At least the NFL players got this segment right.

NFL Top 100 Players of 2023 – Snubs:

Christian Darrisaw, OT, Vikings – If you want to see the sort of impact that Christian Darrisaw had for the Vikings, check out the games in which he was sidelined. Minnesota’s offense was not functional without Darrisaw.

Creed Humphrey, C, Chiefs – Jason Kelce was the top center in the NFL for years. You could make the case that Creed Humphrey deserves that distinction now, so why wasn’t he listed in the top 100?

Drake London, WR, Falcons – Drake London was incredible this year, and he should play even better with some experience. He should have been in the 100-75 range.

D.K. Metcalf, WR, Seahawks – D.K. Metcalf wasn’t on this list last year either. He’s a terrific receiver who should .

Von Miller, DE, Bills – Look at the 2022 Bills’ defense before and after Von Miller’s Thanksgiving injury. Buffalo may have won the Super Bowl with Miller, but completely fell apart in the wake of his departure..

Penei Sewell, OT, Lions – Penei Sewell is one of the reasons why Detroit maintained an elite offensive line last year. He has helped open up the offense, so he should have been listed in the top 60 or so.

Preston Smith, DE, Packers – Preston Smith was rewarded with a $52 million contract last offseason because of his great play with the Packers. He has 33.5 sacks in four years with Green Bay.

A.J. Terrell, CB, Falcons – A.J. Terrell is coming off a bit of a down year, but he’s still one of the most talented cornerbacks in the NFL.

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