The NFL Network is releasing its annual NFL’s 100 Best Players list although they’ve only named the top 80 players, Steelers Nation has bone to pick.
- Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger comes in at 26th.
OK, each NFL team carries 53 players on their active rosters, up to 10 on their practice squads, and let’s say an average of 5 players on injured reserve. Multiply that by 32 NFL teams, and you have 2,176 players under the employ of the NFL in any given season. Actually, that number is probably higher and one could conservatively round it up to 2200.
- That puts Ben Roethlisberger in the top 1.5% of all NFL players.
Not bad, huh?
While placing in the top 1.5% is certainly an accomplishment, it still fails to do Roethlisberger justice. To understand why, put yourself through a simple test: If all NFL players were suddenly declared eligible for a re-draft, would Ben Roethlisberger be the 26th player chosen in the said draft?
- Almost certainly not.
Andrew Luck would probably certainly go first. Tom Brady and Peyton Manning (Neal Coolong of The Steelers Wire has some interesting observations on Manning) almost certainly would go before Ben, as would Aaron Rogers. But outside of that, how many other quarterbacks would be taken before Roethlisberger? How many other players? JJ Watt? Sure. There are others. Because of his age, Ben might not even make it into the top 10.
- But there’s no way that Roethlisberger, as one of the 3 active quarterbacks with more than one Super Bowl ring, would go 26.
There’s no way getting around it. NFL Network is dissing Ben Roethlisberger, even if 26th is an improvement over his 2014 rating of 31, and even if 26 is his best ranking yet.
Thurs far the Pittsburgh Steelers are not finding much love in the NFL Networks Top 100 players list. Marukice Pouncey qualified as the 83rd best player, and is the only other Steelers to make the list. Antonio Brown is certain to make into the top 20, and perhaps, perhaps, Le’Veon Bell will make it as well. And while recognition of Bell would be welcome, placing Le’Veon Bell ahead of Ben Roethlisberger is a mistake.
Ben Roethilsberger not getting his just due from the rest of the NFL is nothing new. In 2006 ESPN rated 100 sure Hall of Famers and left Ben Roethlisberger out declaring him as a “Game Manager” while putting Matt Leinart as a sure-fire bet for Canton….
- How that one work out?
Since that time Roethlisbeger has of course won another Super Bowl and led his team to a second. You’d think the pundits in the national media would simply accept that Roethlisberger has earned elite status. Guess not….