Being that my last NFL column was underrated players, let’s go with overrated now.
When it comes to overrated and underrated, I feel like sports fans misinterpret those terms when discussing teams and players. Typically when I talk to people and say someone is overrated, it automatically equates to “they are trash.” On the flip side when I say someone is underrated, it means “people think they are bad.” However, underrated is exactly what the word says it is, people underestimate them and their value.
In underrated I eliminated offensive lineman and QBs because I don’t know of too many who are truly underrated especially at QB and lineman tend to get more looked at as units.
10. Clay Matthews – Los Angeles Rams – Linebacker
For such a promising start to what looked like a legendary career, Clay Matthews has fallen into the realm of pedestrian. I still feel like the pulse on him is still higher than it should be for a guy who hasn’t hit a double digit sack total in 4 years. In 2015, he did transition to middle so the sack numbers should dip. However, he moved back to the outside and hasn’t reached that double digit mark again.
9. Stefon Diggs – Minnesota Vikings – Wide Receiver
I like Stefon Diggs. I really do. But there is no rhyme or reason why the guy should get the love he gets when Thielen plays on the other side. In 2018, he finally cracked 100 catches and/or 1,000 yards for the first time and people talk about him like the savior of the Vikings pass game. Wrong.
8. Vic Beasley Jr. – Atlanta Falcons – Linebacker/Defensive End
Aside from one massive season, he has been a disappointment and spot rusher to say the least. For a guy selected 8th overall and entering his 5th season, 29.5 sacks aided by one boom year where he had more than half of his career total, no bueno.
7. Melvin Gordon – Running Back – Los Angeles Chargers
He is looked at as a top 10 back because of his fantasy value alone. Fantasy value and real life value are not one and the same. Running backs tend to get banged up more than most positions so I won’t dock him too harshly for that considering he has played more than three quarters of the season every year. I will dock him for the fact that 2018 was the first season he eclipsed 4.0 yards per carry and last season he eclipsed 1,000 yards for the only time in his four year career.
6. AJ Green – Wide Receiver – Cincinnati Bengals
I don’t like the fact that Green gets mentioned in Top 10 territory when he hasn’t been for years. His two best seasons came in year two and three in the league. Since then, between injuries and inconsistencies, he doesn’t deserve to be mentioned there. In the last five years, he has three 1,000 yard seasons. Two of which, he barely passed the mark. As far as pay dirt goes, he has 34 touchdowns in the last five years compared to 29 in the first three. My biggest knock on him is his consistency week to week. In addition to that, he has 18 100-yard games in the last five years compared to 15 over the first three.
5. Ben Roethlisberger – Quarterback – Pittsburgh Steelers
He has always gotten love as one of the elites. By elites, I mean he gets mentioned in the same breath as Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees. He shouldn’t be. After the 2010 run, his playoff record is 3-5 with sub par numbers. His offenses haven’t put up points consistently. They have four games where they failed to score 20 points. That is also being paired with the best running back and receiver for a while. One of those games where they did manage 42 was against Jacksonville. The offense didn’t get moving until Jacksonville went into prevent for most of the second half.
4. Malcolm Butler – Cornerback – Tennessee Titans
Remember when he was almost traded to the Saints? Thank God he wasn’t. I remember hearing so many fans scream about how the Saints needed him and it was a good trade for Brandin Cooks…my ass. The QB rating against Butler that year was over 100.0. He is inconsistent and hasn’t lived up to his contract with the Titans. The man is living off one play in the biggest game of the year.
3. Sammy Watkins – Wide Receiver – Kansas City Chiefs
Barf. Whoever his agent is, sign me up.
2. TY Hilton – Wide Receiver – Indianapolis Colts
He has gaudy numbers and he is a great receiver. The problem, he is one dimensional. He is nothing more than a glorified burner. Too many times, you hear him mentioned as a top receiver. Not even close. He can’t take over games. He needs too much volume to be effective. Of the 17 receivers who reached the 1,000 yard mark last season, he was 15th in catch rate. I would like to point out it was a career high for him at 63.3%. In fact, it is only the second season he has reached 60%. The other major pain point is his game is it doesn’t translate to pay dirt. He also had the lowest touchdowns of everyone who eclipsed that mark because of how one dimensional he is. Once he gets in the redzone, he is worthless.
1. Marcus Peters – Cornerback- Los Angeles Rams
As his mouth has gotten louder in recent years, his play has as well. However, it is on the wrong side of loud. The major problem with Peters is he is awful against other elite receivers. He has always been one of the most targeted corners. From 2015-2017, he had the most targets against him. He only allowed them to complete 50.4% of their passes. That number jumped to over 70% in 2018 about midway through the season. Some of the league’s best like Michael Thomas, Davante Adams and Adam Thielen feasted on him. He wound up having a stronger finish than beginning, but you have to wonder what is to come in 2019. Was it a down year or a sign of things to come.