To preview the 2020 NFL season, we asked more than 50 league executives, coaches, scouts and players to help us stack the top 10 players at 11 different positions (sorry, special-teamers). The results might surprise you. They surprised me.
Here's how it worked: Voters gave their best 10 to 15 players at a position, then we compiled the results and ranked candidates based on number of top-10 votes, composite average, interviews and research. We had several ties, so we broke them by isolating the two-man matchup with additional voting and follow-up calls. Each section is packed with quotes and nuggets from the voters on every guy -- even the honorable mentions.
The objective is to identify the best players right now for 2020. This is not a five-year projection or an achievement award. Who's the best today? Pretty simple.
We'll roll out a position per day over the next 11 days. Here's the schedule:
Interior offensive line play probably isn't what it used to be. Despite some big-time talent at the top, league evaluators bemoaned the lack of dominance, particularly at center.
As one veteran NFL defensive lineman put it, years ago every team played power football but now they have to mix it up because "you can't just line up and drive players 10 yards off the ball. There will be a stalemate at the line. You have to get creative."
Several players on this list beg to differ with their play, including a two-man faceoff for the No. 1 spot that required a tiebreaker.
Only four centers made the Top 10, but the honorable mentions list features men in the middle.