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NFL Network Top Ten Underrated Players of All-Time


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#1 rocketman44

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 01:03 PM

For the first time last night (I'm sure it's aired before) I watched another installment in the series of "Top 10" on the NFL Network. These somewhat annoying (they interview the same people all the time) and sometimes downright silly programs (Top 10 Uniforms included Cheerleaders' and Pop Warner League uniforms) do occasionally prove interesting.

Here's the Top 10 Most Underrated Players according to NFL Network:

10. Len Dawson
9. Brian Westbrook
8. Ken Anderson
7. Randall Cunningham
6. Marvin Harrison
5. Andre Reed
4. Ottis Anderson
3. Charles Haley
2. Roger Craig
1. Bart Starr

Mostly, I'd agree with this list, though I might be inclined to elevate Len Dawson and lower Marvin Harrison (who, to me, may have been overlooked mainly due to not being a big mouth a la Terrell Owens and Randy Moss), but I think it's a pretty sound listing.

I definitely agree with the ranking of Ottis Anderson, who was one heck of a back with the 1980s Cardinals and was MVP of Super Bowl XXV late in his career. He was Rookie Of The Year, Comeback Player Of The Year ten years later, and rushed for 10,273 yards and 86 TDs. I think he's underrated because, in my experience, he's seldom mentioned in discussions of great running backs.

I'm looking for some opinions, even if you didn't see the program. Is there anyone you'd add/delete to/from this list? Are there any you strongly agree/disagree with?

#2 Regal

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 01:11 PM

Seth Joyner should be on that list. He's one of the best LBs ever, yet no one ever mentions him outside of Philly.

#3 Froggy

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 01:15 PM

That's a great list. Recently I've thought to myself that Kevin Greene doesn't get as much love as other pass rushers from his era, even though statistically only Bruce Smith and Reggie White had done it better.

#4 cmart102

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 01:29 PM

That's a great list. Recently I've thought to myself that Kevin Greene doesn't get as much love as other pass rushers from his era, even though statistically only Bruce Smith and Reggie White had done it better.

Kevin Greene for sure

#5 faceman

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 01:31 PM

Bobby Bell and Willy Lanier- I believe these two have been overlooked due to playing their careers in one of the NFL's smallest
markets in KC. Bell not only could rush the passer,he could also run with and cover opposing Wr's. He was also the Long snapper
and on the hands team for onside kicks. He was the pioneer of the style of LB play Lawrence Taylor brought to the Giants a generation
later. Lanier broke the color barrier at the MLB position, paving the way for future greats like Mike Singletary and Ray Lewis.

Sam Mills- Imo he should be in the HOF already. Former Saints and Colts HC Jim Mora once said Mills was the best player he ever
coached. He was also extremely smart. During NFLN's Top 10 Lb'ng units, Jamie Dukes said during a game, Mills called every one
of their plays before the snap.

#6 Stephen1

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 01:36 PM

not sure how Bart Starr is underrated, I believe he was a 1st Ballot HOFer and is considered an all-time great.

How about Phil Simms?

Hershel Walker comes to mind, 2nd all-time in most combined yardage when he retired (7th now), He is the only player to gain 4,000 yards three different ways: rushing, receiving and kickoff returns. He is one of six players (Jim Brown, Lenny Moore, Marcus Allen, Marshall Faulk and Thurman Thomas) to exceed 60 touchdowns rushing and 20 touchdowns receiving. He is the only NFL player with a 90+ yard reception, 90+ yard run and a 90+ yard kickoff return in one season (1994), and yes to most is seen as a bust.

Bobby Bell and Willy Lanier- I believe these two have been overlooked due to playing their careers in one of the NFL's smallest
markets in KC. Bell not only could rush the passer,he could also run with and cover opposing Wr's. He was also the Long snapper
and on the hands team for onside kicks. He was the pioneer of the style of LB play Lawrence Taylor brought to the Giants a generation
later. Lanier broke the color barrier at the MLB position, paving the way for future greats like Mike Singletary and Ray Lewis.

Sam Mills- Imo he should be in the HOF already. Former Saints and Colts HC Jim Mora once said Mills was the best player he ever
coached. He was also extremely smart. During NFLN's Top 10 Lb'ng units, Jamie Dukes said during a game, Mills called every one
of their plays before the snap.


Sam Mills is a good one!

#7 MightyJNC

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 01:38 PM

Hard to see how they consider Charles Haley to have benn "underrated", for a stretch there in his career he was viewed as the mssing ingredient for a team with legit SB aspirations but that only lacked a dominant pass rusher.

Nice to see BWest on the list and someone else mentioned Joyner, but for the Birds I always though Harold Carmichael was underrated outside of Philly too.

#8 CMPunk

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 02:07 PM

Derrick Thomas for Kansas City never gets any love outside of KC.

#9 Froggy

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 02:09 PM

Derrick Thomas for Kansas City never gets any love outside of KC.



:huh: ya he does...

#10 MightyJNC

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 02:22 PM

Derrick Thomas for Kansas City never gets any love outside of KC.


:wacko:


#11 CaliEagle

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 02:52 PM

Bobby Bell and Willy Lanier- I believe these two have been overlooked due to playing their careers in one of the NFL's smallest
markets in KC. Bell not only could rush the passer,he could also run with and cover opposing Wr's. He was also the Long snapper
and on the hands team for onside kicks. He was the pioneer of the style of LB play Lawrence Taylor brought to the Giants a generation
later. Lanier broke the color barrier at the MLB position, paving the way for future greats like Mike Singletary and Ray Lewis.

Sam Mills- Imo he should be in the HOF already. Former Saints and Colts HC Jim Mora once said Mills was the best player he ever
coached. He was also extremely smart. During NFLN's Top 10 Lb'ng units, Jamie Dukes said during a game, Mills called every one
of their plays before the snap.

I agree with you. I would argue that Lanier and Bell were far more important to the Chiefs' success than Len Dawson.

#12 faceman

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 03:18 PM

I agree with you. I would argue that Lanier and Bell were far more important to the Chiefs' success than Len Dawson.


I agree with your take as well. The Chiefs defense from that era is rarely mentioned as being the best of all time. Imo,they
weren't,but deserve to be in the conversation. Besides Bell and Lanier,they also had HOF'ers Emmit Thomas and Buck
Buchanon on their defense. DT Curley Culp was also there and he's the veterans committee nominee for 2013. Imo,he
should make it like Chris Hanburger did a few years ago.

#13 Froggy

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 03:55 PM

This might be the wrong place to say this, but I think Brian Dawkins is gonna end up being an underrated player many years down the road. When talking about Safeties from the last 10-15 years with fans of different teams, I always seem to be the only one who mentions Dawkins' name. The two staples who always come up are of course Reed and TroyP...


Eagles fans actually overrate him by claiming he's a surefire first ballot HOFer, fans around the league underrate him by being oblivious to just how good he was for a long time.

#14 Innocence096

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 04:00 PM

Bart Starr number one? really?

#15 Gmen4ever

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 04:39 PM

Westbrook was underrated? I'm not implying that he was OVERrated, but pretty much everyone knew who he was, and when he was on the field. I find it hard to believe that anyone would underrate a great ballplayer like him, because I personally never saw/heard anyone do it. Thats the only one on that list I disgree with. He was a beast, and he always got the right amount of credit IMO.

#16 GA4M

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 04:48 PM

Seth Joyner should be on that list. He's one of the best LBs ever, yet no one ever mentions him outside of Philly.


Um, that would be LT.

#17 Gmen4ever

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 04:51 PM

Um, that would be LT.


He did say 'one of', not 'Joyner was the best ever'

Joyner WAS a great LB

#18 Rodney_Zero

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 05:00 PM

Clyde Simmons

#19 RedskinsFan01

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 07:10 PM

London Fletcher

#20 Froggy

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 07:27 PM

London Fletcher



Do you know anything about the Redskins before the current team? Come on, make some kind of historical contribution. How about Art Monk? Despite actually being in the Hall, he can actually be considered to be overlooked by many in his era...

#21 SD_Eagle

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 08:15 PM

Seth Joyner should be on that list. He's one of the best LBs ever, yet no one ever mentions him outside of Philly.


First person that popped in my mind when I saw the thread title was Joyner. Top 3 weren't under rated at all.

#22 SD_Eagle

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Posted 21 December 2012 - 08:17 PM

Westbrook was underrated? I'm not implying that he was OVERrated, but pretty much everyone knew who he was, and when he was on the field. I find it hard to believe that anyone would underrate a great ballplayer like him, because I personally never saw/heard anyone do it. Thats the only one on that list I disgree with. He was a beast, and he always got the right amount of credit IMO.


You appreciate him more because you saw him more. He wasn't revered league wide like Tomlinson or other RBs were during his playing span. In Philly we considered him the best offensive player in the league at one point but league wide he never got that recognition.

#23 skipsharp

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 12:26 AM

Tra Thomas. One of those 10 year left tackles.

#24 Innocence096

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 12:48 AM

Do you know anything about the Redskins before the current team? Come on, make some kind of historical contribution. How about Art Monk? Despite actually being in the Hall, he can actually be considered to be overlooked by many in his era...

i think he makes a point with fletcher though. The guy has been a tackling machine for over decade now and he is hardly a household name. He is as steady as they come

#25 Froggy

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 12:59 AM

i think he makes a point with fletcher though. The guy has been a tackling machine for over decade now and he is hardly a household name. He is as steady as they come




The thread seemed to have a common theme when it comes to players being mentioned..,none of them are currently playing.

#26 theJesterr

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 01:29 AM

Irving Fryar, Warrick Dunn, Troy Vincent, And as a position on a whole the fullback... there are many good fullbacks that get essentially no love because of the position they play.

#27 Pegger

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 02:36 AM

London Fletcher

id have to agree. He's been doing it forever and always got overlooked by Uracher and Willis.

#28 700level4life

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 03:42 AM

I have trouble placing Bart Starr #1. I didn't see the show, but I assume that there was good reason for the #1 ranking. Ernest Byner was very underrated.

#29 Happyfoosball

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 04:01 AM

Really glad to see Otis on there. There is a guy who retired 8th all time leading rusher in NFL history or something ridiculous like that. He was top 10 in yards and TD's when he hung it up. He's won a super bowl MVP and absolutely belongs in the hall of fame. Yet I have never heard his name mentioned.

#30 Gmen4ever

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Posted 22 December 2012 - 05:32 AM

You appreciate him more because you saw him more. He wasn't revered league wide like Tomlinson or other RBs were during his playing span. In Philly we considered him the best offensive player in the league at one point but league wide he never got that recognition.


I have to disagree a bit. Of course he wasn't completely hyped like Tomlinson, but who was, as a RB, during that time period? Tomlinson was the best in the business at the time. I always saw a ton of much deserved accolades for Westbrook on a regular basis. He was certainly no Tomlinson, but he was still damn good, and a LOT of people knew it.