Our countdown of the SEC’s 25 best players is winding down. It’s safe to say this next guy is a pretty fair player.
No. 2: A.J. Green, WR, Jr., Georgia
2009 numbers: Led Georgia with 53 catches for 808 yards and six touchdown receptions. His average of 80.8 receiving yards per game ranked second in the SEC.
Most recent ranking: No. 24 on the 2009 postseason countdown and No. 6 on the 2009 preseason countdown.
Making the case for Green: The only thing holding Green back last season was a spate of injuries, because he was nearly unstoppable the first two months of the season. Seven games into the season, he already had 41 catches for 682 yards and six touchdowns. But he bruised a lung against Florida and missed the Tennessee Tech game. And then in the second quarter against Auburn, he injured his left shoulder and missed the next two games. The 6-4, 207-pound Green insists that he’s all the way back as we approach the 2010 season -- which is bad news for opposing defenses. You just don’t find many receivers with Green’s combination of size, speed and leaping ability. A former star basketball player in high school, he’s outstanding at using his body to shield defenders and then has the athletic ability to go up and get anything that’s thrown near him. Green was a first-team All-SEC selection each of the past two seasons and enters the 2010 season as one of the favorites to win the Biletnikoff Award as the top receiver in college football. He’s just an explosive offensive weapon all the way around and is truly one of those players that would impact the game no matter where he lined up. He blocked a fourth quarter field goal to help Georgia beat Arizona State last season and is lobbying to return punts this coming season. The Bulldogs would be wise to put the ball in his hands as many times as they possibly can. He's a game-changer in every sense of the word.
No. 10: Jerrell Powe, NT, Sr., Ole Miss
No. 13: Kelvin Sheppard, LB, Sr., LSU
No. 16: Mark Barron, S, Jr., Alabama
No. 19: D.J. Williams, TE, Sr., Arkansas
No. 21: Clint Boling, OT, Sr., Georgia
No. 22: Greg Childs, WR, Jr., Arkansas
No. 23: Washaun Ealey, RB, So., Georgia
No. 24: Chris Marve, LB, Jr., Vanderbilt
No. 25: Luke Stocker, TE, Sr., Tennessee