There’s a television show on NFL Network called the Top 100 Players of 2012. It features a list based on who the players felt were the top 20 NFL players. No further methodology is provided to elaborate on how a list of the top 100 players was formed.
During the 2011 NFL lockout NFL Network devised a way to fill air-time and get viewers to watch the channel by creating the Top 100 Players of 2011. Just like the 2012 version of the show, the Top 100 of 2011 list was controversial. Somehow this year’s list is even more baffling than the previous one.
According to the list Cam Newton is a better quarterback than Matthew Stafford, Steve Smith and Victor Cruz are better wide receivers than Mike Wallace, and that Vonta Leach (one of two fullbacks in the top 100) was the 45th best player in 2011. There are other trivial rankings on the list but it all adds up to one thing: the players didn’t take their time with the survey form and did not put a great deal of thought when completing their surveys.
When conducting a survey a statistician should always ensure that all invalid surveys are disposed of. So if a survey taker rushes through and doesn’t take the time to think about the questions being asked, then the statistician excludes that document from their results since it would skew the data.
Clearly the NFL Network have devised an arbitrary method to produce a list which allows them to have a television show for the sole purpose of filling air-time during the off-season.