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AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Boston Globe

Discussion in 'NFL Football Forum' started by jmt57, May 12, 2013.

  1. Ice_Ice_Brady

    Ice_Ice_Brady Rookie

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    Huuuuhhh!!!!????? I know he is off to a great start in his career, but I think no way is he top-5. Although I think you are correct, because there is no way MW would not have been listed at this point... he should be in the 8-12 range. If we are looking at guys who just coming into their own, Solder is just as logical in the top-5 as Wilkerson.
  2. Get it shawtaay

    Get it shawtaay Rookie

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    #32 Jersey

    Well I'd base the assumption that Wilkerson is #5 on two things:

    -As you mentioned, he hasn't been listed yet, but is too good to be outside the top 25. And he hasn't been mentioned yet.

    -Mr. Frenz references PFF/FO a lot in these pieces, who I know are all very high on Wilkerson. Back when I had paywall access to PFF I read something claiming Wilkerson was the second-best 3-4 DE in the league after JJ Watt.
  3. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Globe; Jets DL Mo Wilkerson #5

    Ding Ding Ding Ding Ding ...
    We have a winner, come on down and claim your prize!


    AFC east top 25, No. 5: Jets DL Muhammad Wilkerson - Going Deep - Boston.com

    Texans defensive end J.J. Watt was unquestionably the best 3-4 defensive end in the NFL in 2012, but immediately behind Watt in the hierarchy of 3-4 defensive ends, though, is Muhammad Wilkerson. Were it not for Watt's incredible season, Wilkerson would have gotten his share of recognition for solid stats across the board: 70 tackles, five sacks, four pass deflections, three forced fumbles, a fumble recovery and a touchdown.

    The position of 3-4 defensive end is typically regarded as less than glamorous. That's because, mostly, they are "space-eaters" whose job it is to occupy as many blockers as possible to free up the linebackers behind them to make plays. With the Jets, however, the onus is on everyone to create pressure in an aggressive one-gap style of defense under Jets head coach Rex Ryan. According to Pro Football Focus, Wilkerson logged 22 pressures, 10 hits and five sacks in 2012, all of which ranked him among the top five 3-4 defensive ends in the league.

    His pass-rushing potency was not the only thing that stood out for him last year. Pro Football Focus charted him with 46 "stops" in the running game, the second-most for any 3-4 defensive end. Advanced NFL Stats gave him 71 successes on the season, the second-most for any defensive end. Thus, it seems no matter who you ask, Wilkerson was dominant in 2012.

    His talent may not supersede any deficiencies on the Jets roster, but it will certainly go a long way to helping the Jets maximize the pass-rushing potential and overall effectiveness of their 3-4 defense -- or any other alignment they choose to run.


    Chris Gross of TurnOnTheJets.com delivers an in-depth look at what the Jets defensive line could look like in 2013 and for years to come.​
    Last edited: May 29, 2013
  4. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Globe; Pats TE Rob Gronkowski #4

    AFC East top 25, No. 4: Patriots TE Rob Gronkowski - Going Deep - Boston.com


    The influx of athletic tight ends in the NFL has run rampant, but Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski set the bar -- not just by being one of the most prolific pass-catching tight ends in NFL history, but by being so much more than simply a pass-catcher.

    He is a matchup nightmare.

    Put a linebacker on Gronkowski, and his speed and quickness creates a mismatch in passing situations. Against a safety, his size is overwhelming, and the Patriots clearly have the advantage when running the ball in that situation.

    It would be easy to put Gronkowski in this spot simply by virtue of his 38 receiving touchdowns in the first three years of his career -- the third-most for any player in the first three years of their career behind only Jerry Rice and Randy Moss -- or the fact that, according to Pro Football Focus, quarterback Tom Brady has thrown just four interceptions in his career when targeting Gronkowski.

    Gronkowski's game goes much further than all that, though. He has developed into one of the better run-blocking tight ends in the game, as well. He has graded out among the top five run-blocking tight ends each of the past three years, and ranked No. 1 in 2011 according to PFF.

    If Gronkowski can get healthy this offseason and stay healthy in 2013, he will likely continue his reign of terror on opposing defenses without a hitch.


    Did you know?

    Gronkowski's 29 red zone touchdown receptions are the most by any player over the past three years -- nine touchdowns more than second place, Falcons tight end Tony Gonzalez and Saints tight end Jimmy Graham.


    Bonus reading

    Khaled Elsayed of Pro Football Focus breaks down the first downs and touchdowns conversion rate for all tight ends, and not surprisingly, Gronkowski was the top tight end in a landslide.​
  5. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Globe; Pats DL Vince Wilfork #3

    AFC East top 25, No. 3: Patriots DT Vince Wilfork - Going Deep - Boston.com


    The plight of Vince Wilfork will forever be the unglamorous role he plays. Even in the Patriots' 4-3 scheme, he is asked to occupy multiple blockers to free up space for his linemates.

    At this point, few teams utilize a nose tackle the way the Patriots do, but nose tackles like Wilfork are a rare breed. On Grantland.com, Chris Brown -- author of The Essential Smart Football -- wrote about the Patriots defensive versatility and how Wilfork is the engine that makes everything else run effectively. The Patriots defensive scheme is one-of-a-kind, and is tailored to Wilfork's ability to be effective wherever he lines up.

    Sacks are not typically the measure of solid play from Wilfork, but he logged 3.5 in 2011 and three in 2012, hitting those marks for the first time in his career. He also ranked in the top five defensive tackles in success count each of the past two years according to Advanced NFL Stats, a website which tracks the number of times a player was directly responsible for a successful play for the defense.

    The Patriots are still looking to find the missing piece at defensive tackle: a solid pass-rusher who can complement Wilfork's space-eating ability when the team needs to get pressure on the quarterback. With Wilfork at one tackle spot, whoever is lining up next to him will have a much easier job as a result.


    Did you know?

    Wilfork might be the most honest defensive linemen in the game.


    Bonus reading

    Who could forget Greg Bedard's story on Wilfork after he and the Patriots dominated the Jets on Thanksgiving?​



    [​IMG]
  6. Sfpat

    Sfpat Rookie

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    #80 Jersey

    Re: AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Globe; Pats DL Vince Wilfork #3

    Brady is #1. Who's second?
  7. JMC00

    JMC00 On the Roster

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    Re: AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Globe; Pats DL Vince Wilfork #3

    Cameron Wake
  8. patsfanincleveland

    patsfanincleveland Rookie

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    Re: AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Globe; Pats DL Vince Wilfork #3

    That's the same guy who constantly gets run over.

    #2 for road grader fodder seems a lil high.
  9. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Boston Globe; Miami DE Cameron Wake #2



    AFC East top 25, No. 2: Dolphins DE Cameron Wake - Going Deep - Boston.com

    Why Cameron Wake?

    I think the better question is "why doesn't Cameron Wake get the attention he deserves?"

    The answer to that is relatively simple: he plays for a losing team, the Miami Dolphins, a team that hasn't been relevant since 2008 -- the year before Wake joined the team.

    Other than that caveat, Wake has it all going for him. Wake plays one of the defensive "glamour" positions as a pass-rushing edge defender, and is one of the best at it in the game right now. He's put up monstrous numbers, with 43 sacks in his first four seasons, and is one of just seven players in NFL history to have two seasons of over 14 sacks in his first four seasons in the league.

    He's also incredibly scheme flexible, having lined up in the 3-4 as an outside linebacker, and last year in the 4-3 as a defensive end. His versatility gives the Dolphins a world of options in how to execute their defensive scheme next season.

    Stats website Pro Football Focus rated him among the best pass-rushers in the league at either spot, so the Dolphins would be getting bang for their buck without question.

    [​IMG]

    The Dolphins made it a priority to improve their pass-rush by drafting DE/OLB hybrid Dion Jordan. How he fits in the defense remains to be seen, but if the two are feeding off one another, the possibilities are frightening for opposing quarterbacks. Wake could be headed for another huge season, and maybe then, he'll finally get the attention he deserves.


    Did you know?

    According to TurnOnTheJets.com, the New York Jets nearly signed Wake out of the CFL, before general manager Mike Tannenbaum said he didn't want him, which allowed the Dolphins to swoop in.


    Bonus reading

    Ben Stockwell of Pro Football Focus delivers a profile on Wake's strengths and weaknesses as a pass-rusher.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2013
  10. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #51 Jersey

    There is no ******* way on this bright big earth that Cameron Wake is a better or more valuable footballer than Vince Wilfork. That's laughable.
  11. ctpatsfan77

    ctpatsfan77 PatsFans.com Supporter PatsFans.com Supporter

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    The inevitable No. 1 is out.

    You should have, Erik.
  12. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Globe; Pats QB Tom Brady #1

    About the most anticlimatic finish you will ever have to one of these rankings:

    AFC East top 25, No. 1: Patriots QB Tom Brady - Going Deep - Boston.com


    Brady is the only quarterback in NFL history to throw for 34 or more touchdown passes and 12 or fewer interceptions in four career seasons. That's twice as many seasons as Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning, Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers and 49ers legend Steve Young. Those single-season numbers have been achieved by only eight other quarterbacks in NFL history, and Brady has made it part of his yearly routine.



    His career accomplishments read like a resumé for a future Hall-of-Fame quarterback. We all know about the three Super Bowl wins, the two Super Bowl MVPs and the two regular season MVPs, but his accomplishments span over a decade:
    • 334 career touchdown passes ranks fifth all-time
    • 2.1 career interception percentage is tied for seventh all-time
    • 63.7 career completion percentage ranks ninth all-time
    • 44,806 career passing yards ranks ninth all-time
    • NFL-record 50 touchdown passes in 2007
    • NFL-record 358 regular-season passes without an interception from 2010 to 2011
    • NFL-record 0.8 interception percentage in 2010 (for any quarterback with over eight starts in the season)
    He has put together these remarkable achievements despite a constantly changing set of circumstances -- offensive line, wide receivers, tight ends, running backs and offensive coordinators have come and gone, and Brady's success has continued.

    All those things happened in the past, but Brady is still spinning it with the best of them, ranking eighth in yards per attempt (7.6), sixth in passer rating (98.7), fourth in touchdowns (34) and first in interception percentage (1.26) last season.

    He has been one of the best in late-game situations, as well. He is tied for ninth all-time with 26 career fourth-quarter comeback victories, and tied for fifth with 37 career game-winning drives when his team was not trailing in the fourth quarter.

    [​IMG]

    As analysts, it's our job to nitpick, but Brady has left us with very few nits to pick except for questions about waning deep accuracy -- questions which are better addressed in the context that a) Brady hasn't had a deep threat since 2010 and b) he's been throwing more, not fewer, deep passes over the past few seasons.

    There's nothing left for Brady to accomplish; at this point, anything else is simply adding to a legacy that's long been cemented.


    Did you know?
    Brady set a postseason record with a 92.9 completion percentage (26-of-28) against the Jaguars in the '07-'08 Divisional Round.


    Bonus reading
    Carve out 10 minutes to read this amazing post by Peter King of Sports Illustrated, where Brady says he has "never felt better throwing the ball."
  13. Sparetire

    Sparetire Rookie

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    #24 Jersey

    Re: AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Globe; Pats QB Tom Brady #1

    Am i the only one that when i read something about TFB i get all...gay?
  14. SuperStang83

    SuperStang83 Rookie

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    #24 Jersey

    Re: AFC East Top 25, per Erik Frenz of the Globe; Pats QB Tom Brady #1

    Haha, me and you both brother!
  15. LetsGoBuffalo

    LetsGoBuffalo Rookie

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    I know i'm a homer here, but Spiller at 6 is nuts. Spiller is top 10 in the NFL, at worst. One of the most electric and dynamic players in the league.
  16. ausbacker

    ausbacker Brady > Manning. PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #51 Jersey

    These are some non-Patriots players I can think of who immediately push Spiller outside the top 10;

    Adrian Peterson
    Ray Rice
    Aaron Rodgers
    JJ Watt
    Darrelle Revis
    Calvin Johnson
    Drew Brees
    Jimmy Graham
    Jason Pierre-Paul
    DeMarcus Ware

    Spiller may well end up becoming a top 10 player in the NFL. As of right now, he'd be lucky to make the top 20.
  17. strngplyr

    strngplyr On the Roster

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    Aldon Smith
    Von Miller
    Peyton Manning
    Arian Foster
    Nndamakong Suh
    Larry Fitzgerald
    Terrel Suggs
    Richard Sherman

    Just to name a few more. Spiller is great, and he COULD be one of the best, but he's often injured and schematically underused. The latter of which PROBABLY isn't his fault, but it does count against him because there could be an underlying reason that we view him as underused (ie: conditioning, worn out after X amount of touches, something the coaches know that we fans don't, etc.)
  18. LetsGoBuffalo

    LetsGoBuffalo Rookie

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    JPP?
    Ray Rice?
    Suh?
    Foster?
    Freaking Suggs?

    If we are talking about right now, Spiller is far superior to any of those players. It's not close. The guy is top 10 talent.
  19. LetsGoBuffalo

    LetsGoBuffalo Rookie

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    Can you do me a quick favor and link the games he's missed due to injury?
  20. jmt57

    jmt57 Moderator Staff Member PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I think Spiller is very capable of deserving to be ranked much higher than he currently is. However, until (a) the Bills utilize his talents more than they have in the past, and (b) he maintains a high level of production for more than one season, then I would say Frenz' ranking looks about right to me.

    To be ranked higher there needs to be some more consistency from him. Spiller had five games with fewer than 40 yards rushing last year; five games may not sound like a lot, but that represents nearly one-third of the entire season.

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