The NFL Network is once again airing its top-100 player rankings. This week, players 41-50 were revealed, and Cam Newton came in at number 46, falling six spots from last year’s ranking.
Interestingly enough, Newton squeezes into the league’s top-10 quarterbacks according to the list, beating out Colin Kaepernick (81), Matthew Stafford (76), Ben Roethlisberger (61) and Russell Wilson (51).
Nine quarterbacks will finish ahead of Newton on the list, as Eli Manning finished 42nd, while Peyton Manning, Tom Brady, Tony Romo, Drew Brees, Matt Schaub, Andrew Luck, Phillip Rivers, Robert Griffin III and Matt Ryan have yet to hear their names called.
With that said, I have a few disagreements with the network’s ranking. For one, Eli Manning should be rated much higher, especially with Rivers, Schaub and Romo evidently to be rated higher as list is further revealed. Big Ben’s rating is also curious; Russell Wilson is a better quarterback than Rothlisberger? This is a player poll, so I’m wondering if it has become a popularity contest.
It seems odd to call Newton a top-10 quarterback, as his 2012 was a tumultuous. Newton threw a total of five touchdowns to eight interceptions in September and October. However, he rebounded during the second half of the season, throwing 13 touchdown passes to just four picks.
Last year, Newton’s on-field performance was overshadowed by his touchdown celebrations and post-game press conferences. The reality is that Newton is one of the most talented quarterbacks in the league and finished the season strong.