Our friends at Pro Football Focus compiled a list of the top 101 players from 2012, and there were some interesting results. The AFC North had 10 players make the list, which is three less than the San Francisco 49ers. This is a division that sent two teams to the playoffs and had one team with a losing record. And, the Super Bowl champion came from the AFC North.
Here are the AFC North players who made the list:
3. Geno Atkins, Bengals defensive tackle
32. Marshal Yanda, Ravens guard
34. Joe Thomas, Browns offensive tackle
41. A.J. Green, Bengals wide receiver
70. Ben Roethlisberger, Steelers quarterback
89. Lawrence Timmons, Steelers linebacker
92. Ray Rice, Ravens running back
97. T.J. Ward, Browns safety
99. Reggie Nelson, Bengals safety
100. Joe Flacco, Ravens quarterback
The biggest snubs for each division team were: Bengals defensive end Michael Johnson (11.5 sacks), Browns linebacker D'Qwell Jackson (118 tackles) or kicker Phil Dawson (if you're including former players in the 2012 list), Ravens returner Jacoby Jones (NFL-leading 30.7-yard kickoff average, two touchdowns) and Steelers tight end Heath Miller (71 receptions, eight touchdowns).