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Patra's Top 10 players of 2014

We've reached the end of the yellow brick road on the NFL Network's The Top 100 Players of 2014 countdown.

On Wednesday night, players 10 through 1 were revealed. The Around The League team offers up our own top 10 selections. Please note that NFL players had zero input in the creation of these lists. We bring glad tidings and overt sanity.

Where's that voiceover lady NFL Network uses? Try to read this post in her sly intonation if you have that ability.

1. Aaron Rodgers
2. J.J. Watt
3. Peyton Manning
4. Tom Brady
5. Drew Brees
6. Calvin Johnson
7. Earl Thomas
8. Adrian Peterson
9. LeSean McCoy
10. Richard Sherman

» The top four quarterbacks all deserve high rankings, but I'm breaking them up with J.J. Watt. The Texan causes more disruption than any single defensive player over the past two decades. Watt can dominate by overpowering offensive tackles and being too athletic for interior blockers. He could even be more disruptive under Romeo Crennel, which is a scary thought.

» Megatron changes defensive game plans more than any other non-quarterback. Even with all that attention Johnson gets open and still possesses speed and tackle-breaking ability in space. He can also do this.

» I slotted Earl Thomas solidly in my top 10 because of the versatile defense he allows the Seahawks to play. His sideline-to-sideline ability covers up any weakness against both the run and passing games. He's a wrecking ball who plays with swagger and allows teammates to take chances and make plays while knowing he's got their back.

» I'd still take Peterson over McCoy. When he's healthy there is no running back save All Day who demands a stacked box and still runs through it like soiled cardboard.

» I went with Sherman just edging out Patrick Peterson. Sherman locks down physical receivers and can run with speedy ones. He plays the ball in the air as well as any defender. Even though he plays only one side of the field in Seattle, he locks that side down. (Possessing the ability to shadow and not being asked to shadow the top receiver are two separate issues.)

The latest "Around The League Podcast" ranked the top quarterbacks in the NFL today.

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