Published: July 30, 2019 at 09:58 p.m.
Updated: July 30, 2019 at 10:19 p.m.

DeAndre Hopkins, Saquon Barkley deserved top-10 slot in 'Top 100'


The "Top 100 Players of 2019" ends Wednesday night, with the 10 highest vote-getters -- as voted on by the players themselves -- revealed on NFL Network at 9 p.m. ET. The names were revealed Tuesday in alphabetical order:

» Tom Brady, QB, New England Patriots
» Drew Brees, QB, New Orleans Saints
» Antonio Brown, WR, Oakland Raiders
» Aaron Donald, DT, Los Angeles Rams
» Todd Gurley, RB, Los Angeles Rams
» Julio Jones, WR, Atlanta Falcons
» Khalil Mack, OLB, Chicago Bears
» Patrick Mahomes, QB, Kansas City Chiefs
» Von Miller, OLB, Denver Broncos
» Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay Packers

A strong case can be made for each player from that list to be included in the top 10, but is there another player who deserves a spot in the elite group? Who is the biggest snub?

"The Top 100 Players of 2019" will conclude Wednesday, July 31 at 9 p.m. ET on NFL Network.

The fact that Hopkins has never been in top 10 floors me
DeAndre Hopkins was 13th in the top 100 last year, and after another phenomenal performance in 2018, he missed the top 10 by ONE spot this time around. Come on! The veteran wide receiver has carried the Texans' offense for years and 2018 may have been his best yet. Hopkins had the highest percentage of his team's targets, receptions and receiving yards of any player in 2018. He also had the most receptions (115) without a drop in a season since Pro Football Focus started charting drops in 2007. He makes catches that are out of this world, has the production and is a huge reason the Texans have been in the playoffs three of the last four years.
Saquon did everything for the Giants ... and then some
Saquon Barkley got hosed. The Giants running back finished his rookie season with 2,028 scrimmage yards -- third-most by a rookie in NFL history. He did all of this behind a poor O-line, and I'm convinced he would have been an MVP candidate if the Giants had stayed relevant down the stretch. Yet, he was voted No. 16 in this year's top 100. Look at it this way: Ezekiel Elliott posted 1,994 scrimmage yards as a rookie in 2016, and was voted No. 7 in the ensuing top 100 list. Barkley deserves the same kind of respect.
Christian McCaffrey landing at No. 42 on the list is a joke
If you would have given me three guesses to select the top running back on this list before it was released, I would have picked three guys ahead of the player who occupies that spot, Todd Gurley. Not that Gurley isn't great. He is. But I would have selected Saquon Barkley, Alvin Kamara and Christian McCaffrey. The CMC ranking absolutely blows my mind. He's a candidate for the top 10 and he didn't even crack the top 40, which is the biggest snub since "Pulp Fiction" was denied the Oscar for best picture in 1995, which went to "Forrest Gump". Tell me right now, if they were both available on Netflix, are you watching "Pulp Fiction" or "Forrest Gump"? I thought so.

But this McCaffrey thing is insanity. He is the sixth player in NFL history to lead his team outright in carries, rush yards, rush touchdowns, receptions, receiving yards and receiving touchdowns. He was the whole team. Rushed for 1,000 yards. Had 107 receptions. He's going to be a threat to go 1,000/1,000 this year. What more do you want from him?
Bobby Wagner-led defenses always have a chance
This one goes to Bobby Wagner hands down. He was ranked 15th in the top 100, but he's a top-10 player in this league -- I know " Madden" agrees. As his teammate in Seattle in 2016, I saw just how impactful he was to the Seahawks' defense both on the field and off. Wagner is a student of the game and has a relentless motor, which allows him to disrupt plays on a regular basis. I'd take Wagner over two of the defensive players ranked above him in the top 100 list -- No. 12 J.J. Watt and Von Miller, whose ranking will be revealed in Wednesday's final episode.
DeAndre Hopkins has done more with less his entire career
Even though DeAndre Hopkins is annually one of the best receivers in the league, he still is underappreciated, as evidenced by his No. 11 ranking in the top 100 this year. Receivers who perform at Hopkins' level usually have a consistent or above-average quarterback, and this goes all the way back to Jerry Rice (with Joe Montana and Steve Young) in San Francisco. Being a former NFL wide receiver, I know a lot of your success is predicated on whether or not your quarterback is good. This has not mattered for Hopkins. He has been a model of consistency long before the Texans found it in a quarterback. Quit overlooking Hopkins and start giving him the earned and well-deserved credit.

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