Linebacker DeAndre Levy‘s place among the Top 100 Players of 2013-14 list was revealed a few weeks ago, and although it could be considered a surprise to many, Levy was justifiably ranked as the 59th best player in 2014, as voted by his NFL peers. After not being ranked last year, which wasn’t a huge surprise, Levy had a breakout season in 2013. He finished the season with 119 tackles (19th in the NFL), 15 passes defended (tied for seventh), six interceptions (tied for second) and one defensive touchdown. Despite his outstanding season, he didn’t actually make the Pro Bowl, arguably because of the depth at the position in the NFC, but it’s good to see that his peers are giving him some long overdue recognition for what he did last season.
Levy’s defensive touchdown came in Week 2 against the Arizona Cardinals with a 66-yard pick-six off Carson Palmer, and actually had another pick-six against the Minnesota Vikings in Week 1, but a clipping penalty by Ndamukong Suh negated the touchdown. Levy started all 16 games last season, and his best games came against the Green Bay Packers in Week 5 with 14 combined tackles and a pass defense, and against the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 12 with 12 combined tackles and three passes defensed.
In 2014, Levy is projected to start once again at outside linebacker alongside middle linebacker Stephen Tulloch and rookie Kyle Van Noy. It will tough for Levy to replicate his 2013 season not only from a statistical standpoint, but now that he is starting to become a big-time player, defenses will try to game plan around him. If he is indeed able to be a top-60 player in the NFL again in the 2014 season, perhaps he will earn some more Pro Bowl recognition and cement his place among the best outside linebackers in the NFL.