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Alge Crumpler has been a HELL of a player for us this year. One of the better blockers overall on our team, including offensive linemen. He's been a difference maker run blocking and has helped out in pass protection.
On defense, it has to be Mike Wright. One of the better pure pass rushers on our team, we struggled applying heat on Manning when he was out. He also plays gaps extremely well on running plays, albeit he gets pushed back due to relative lack of strength. Dane Fletcher has also helped us out a lot of special teams and passing downs and looks to have a pretty bright future here for us.
Jonathan Goff- im pretty sure hardly anyone outside of NFC east fans know him, he's replaced one of the smartest MLB's in recent years in the league and handled his own and then some. He also has a good DL playing infront of him, but he's improved his coverage a whole lot while consistently stuffing the run.
Ahmad Bradshaw- Our OL has been pretty average in run blocking, and our TE's and FB's have been awful. Those guys ceil the edge and lead block, and they havent been getting it done. Bradshaw has been cutting back too much, but its been working and he has led the league in 20 yard and 10 yard runs by 'running for his life'.
Antrel Rolle- He has became a leader, spoken up and told to shut up but he was right and gave the Giants a wakeup call. He has been amazing in the run game, and right now against the Eagles is looking Allpro. He hasn't gotten the interceptions like we giants fans predicted, but he's no bum.
Shaun Andrews- coming from near retirement to joining the giants, he's become a legit OL for us and IMO and many of the giants fans i know, he should stay at LT.
It's difficult for the Steelers this year, players that would usually go un-noticed are getting their due recognition this year.
But players that are playing above their name recognition are;
1: Lawrence Timmons
2: Maurkice Pouncey
3: Nick Eason
Definitely agree with the guys you mentioned. Timmons has been getting some recognition as of late, but he's playing at an amazing level, up there with the best in the league.
Pouncey has been great as well. Every now and then he has a mistake, but it's usually minor and something that is normally attributed to his inexperience (such as recognizing stunts and things of the sort). Still, he's been very, very good.
Tough question, and hard to evaluate/judge, because a lot of it depends on other people's perceptions.
But for my Packers, I can think of 3 guys off the top of my head.
#1- Josh Sitton, RG
This guy is without a doubt a Pro Bowler right now. I don't think there's another OG in the league we would trade him for considering how good he is and how young he is. But nobody outside of the ice village up there is aware of him and he'll get screwed out of the Pro Bowl. Dallas' POS Leonard Davis will probably beat him for the Pro Bowl based on his name and team.
#2- Tramon Williams, CB/PR
He might be starting to make a name for himself, but most fans around the country still don't know how good this guy has been playing. Ask Packer fans who's been covering better this whole season, him or Woodson. Williams contract is up, and this guy is going to win a big lottery. Hopefully it's the Wisconsin Powerball. Tramon (and Sam Shields) is the reason why the Packers shockingly let Al Harris go a few weeks ago.
#3- Cullen Jenkins, DE
I still remember opening week of the 2007 NFL Season, and the big Tuna Parcells was in the booth for someone, and he mentioned this guy's name out of the blue as a great underrated player. Still, I don't think other team's fans have a clue how good this guy is.
In 2008, when he went down with the torn pec when we were 2-1 or something like that, our defense totally fell apart after that game and the season was a loss. He's a better 4-3 DT, but he's still great for us in the many schemes that Dom Capers throws out there. I still don't know why Kris Jenkins has a big name, but Cullen doesn't. Cullen says it's because of the colleges.
How bout your team?
Pretty much spot on with all of this, although Tramon is slowly getting a name for himself but considering he's playing as a top 5 CB right now it's too slowly.
All three are pro-bowlers and near the top at their positions.
I wish I could change something different but you pretty much nailed it.
- I think this kid is one of the most underrated players in football, Has been tremendous at the left tackle spot, I don't even think he's allowed a sack all season, maybe one.
2. Fred Robbins DT
- He's come here and solidified the Defensive Line, Rams have 28 sacks on the season and going in to week 11 that was leading the NFL, huge improvement from last season when they had something like 23 sacks on the entire season.
3. Craig Dahl SS
- Has looked better than James Butler, even when Butlers been healthy.
I don't think I can still say Kyle Williams. He's gotten good press this year and Tasker gushes over him every week. But there aren't many options, and the guy is great.
Stevie Johnson isn't really underrated because he's a well-publicized fantasy darling, but I feel like not too many people really know how he puts up those numbers. A fantastic route runner with good hands and brilliant after the catch running. He's so good at making his first move just as he catches the ball to shake the guy covering him. He's been able to go over the top a few times this year. He finds space so easily. Not the biggest or fastest, and certainly not the toughest, but he just makes it happen out there. Amazing red zone target, too. He breaks off of coverage phenomenally. Very good one-cut guy.