Two lists in two days! Fox Sports released their list of the top 100 players in the NFL. This isn't fantasy football, this list is about the real thing. The list is not particularly kind to the Eagles as only one makes the top 50 and he got there just barely. The lack of many Eagles on the list is not because of the Eagles' high profile defections this offseason. Donovan McNabb landed at #83 on the list(nearly 60 spots below Romo & Manning) and Brian Westbrook wasn't even on it. That said, I don't have huge disagreements with most of this list save for one which you'll see that later. Here's the Eagles on their list, where they fell, and what they had to say about them.
50. Asante Samuel - A two-time Super Bowl champion, three-time Pro Bowl participant and two-time All-Pro, Samuel's evolved into a senior leader in the Eagles locker room. Though he rarely plays press coverage and isn’t exactly Dick Butkus when it comes to tackling, he's one of the league’s premier interception artists. In the last two seasons, the 29-year-old's recorded 13 regular-season interceptions, including two in the playoffs. His nine picks last year were tied for most in the NFL.
53. DeSean Jackson - Though he had a monster rookie campaign in 2008, last season was Jackson’s real breakout year as a pro. In 2009, he became the first player in NFL history selected as a starter in the Pro Bowl at both receiver and kick returner. Voted an All-Pro punt returner as well, he’s the ultimate weapon. Whether he can have the same production with Kevin Kolb at quarterback as he did with Donovan McNabb, however, is the great unknown.
65. Jason Peters - One of the top left tackles in the sport, Peters will be asked to watch Kevin Kolb’s blindside in 2010. Undrafted out of Arkansas, Peters has made the Pro Bowl the past three seasons. He seamlessly made the move from AFC to NFC last year and anchored the Philly offensive line. When the Eagles acquired Peters last year, Philly coach Andy Reid told reporters, "Jason Peters is the best left tackle in football. He is a powerful and athletic tackle and I have admired his play over the last few years on film." If he’s not the best, he’s certainly in the conversation.
95. Trent Cole - Cole’s improved each year he’s been in the NFL and in 2009 was selected to his second Pro Bowl. Though he rarely is mentioned in the conversation of the league’s top pass rushers, he’s accumulated 47 sacks in six years, with 12.5 in 2009. The Eagles drafted Brandon Graham, a sack demon out of Michigan, to give Cole some help in the pass rush game in 2010. Another reason to like Cole? He’s one of the most entertaining guys in the league when the NFL Films mikes are on him.
Laughably, Fox Sports ranks the Cowboys Anthony Spencer and his whopping 10 career sacks last year eight spots above Cole... Not by any measure is be a better player than Cole. As he has been his whole career, Cole is criminally underrated and the funny thing is that everyone seems to know it. You can't read an article or listen to an announcer talk about Cole without them saying how he's underrated... So why not start rating him people? You're the ones underrating the guy!