NFL Network continues to reveal its list of the top 100 players in the NFL for 2011, which is determined by a player poll. Ravens quarterback Joe Flacco was voted the NFL's 90th best player and running back Ray Rice came off the board Sunday as the 56th best. It looks like at least three Ravens should crack the top 50.
One of those players will most certainly be safety Ed Reed (Ray Lewis, Haloti Ngata and Terrell Suggs are also contenders). NFL.com recently released a sneak preview of Terrell Owens hyping up Reed for the list, and the outspoken wideout said Reed is one of the best safeties in the game and will be a Hall-of-Famer.
"This is a guy that has an uncanny ability to be around the football, find the football," Owens said, channeling his inner Jon Gruden. "If he's not involved somewhat in a play, it's somewhat surprising. This is a guy you really have to pay attention to. If it's a little off-target and it's not on point, this guy will pick it off."
In 2010, Reed had eight interceptions in 10 regular-season games. He has picked off 54 passes in nine NFL seasons and has returned six of them for touchdowns.
"He's a guy you have to account for," Owens said. "He's like offense on defense. Sometimes, their defense can be their best offense. If he's not scoring touchdowns, he's going to allow someone else to score a touchdown. He's going to run it as far as he can, then they're pitching it around. Ed Reed [is definitely] one of the best free safeties in the National Football League."
I think they should have had Owens introduce Donovan McNabb for pure entertainment value. But it was kind of cool to hear Owens, a notorious Debbie Downer, giving props to Reed.
So where will Reed land on this list? We may have to wait a few weeks to find out because NFL Network is going to drag this out. But I am really starting to miss football, so I'm OK with it.
It's going to be interesting to see where Lewis, Ngata and Suggs rank, too. Lewis and Ngata are locks to be somewhere in the top 50, but Suggs isn't. And if Suggs isn't in the top 50, then he's not in the top 100 at all, which would be a major snub in my opinion. Hopefully Suggs' peers have recognized his all-around game.