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The NFL's top 100 players in 2022, 70-61

Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Ceedee Lamb
Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Ceedee Lamb
Halil's Real Footballtalk

The 2022 NFL campaign is almost upon us and teams are playing their preseason matchups. This seemed like a good time to take a look at the top players in the league. Ranking NFL players in any position is controversial. It only gets harder when you expand that to every player in the NFL.

Every player on this list is extremely talented. Many players didn't make the cut because there's only 100 spots on the list. With strong campaigns in 2022, they could easily be on this list next year.

Let's count down the top-100 players in the NFL. Here are players 70-61:

#70. Marcus Williams, Baltimore Ravens

New Orleans Saints v Carolina Panthers
New Orleans Saints v Carolina Panthers

Marcus Williams is one of the most underrated players in the entire league, regardless of position. In five years as a pro, he has never missed more than two games in any season, while intercepting 15 passes and breaking up another 38.

As the closest defender in coverage, his completion percentage, yards per target and passer rating allowed have gone done in each of the past four seasons. He's only missed 6.5 percent of his tackling attempts over the last two. You can ask him to drive on routes in quarters, patrol the deep post or buzz down as a robber, to figure out where help is needed in man-coverage. He’s also come up with several key stops in space for New Orleans.

#69. Wyatt Teller, Cleveland Browns

Cincinnati Bengals v Cleveland Browns
Cincinnati Bengals v Cleveland Browns

While Joel Bitonio has earned the mantle of ranking ahead of Wyatt Teller overall, he may be the most dominant run-blocking guard in the game. Whether it’s riding defenders down the line on zone schemes or burying guys on different pulling assignments, he’s constantly opening up lanes.

Wyatt Teller is the best Right Guard in the NFL #Browns. https://t.co/WCyzERbqX8

In 2020, he was the highest-graded offensive lineman for Pro Football Focus at 93.8. He was graded very well last season (84.9), with a nearly identical pressure rate per dropback (4.0%). Cleveland as a team actually increased their average yards per rush to 5.1, which was tied with the Indianapolis Colts for number one.

#68. Kyle Pitts, Atlanta Falcons

New York Jets v Atlanta Falcons
New York Jets v Atlanta Falcons

Kyle Pitts becoming just the second tight-end to crack 1,000 receiving yards as a rookie is highly impressive, but at the same time he wasn’t really used as a tight end. What he can do split out wide and beating corners as a true X might be even crazier.

A look back at @kylepitts__ rookie year stellar moments 🌟 https://t.co/PpyjYirhb0

He only reached the end-zone once, but he did convert 41 of his 63 grabs into first downs and George Kittle was the only other tight-end to finish in the top 20 for yards per target (9.2). Pitts is a true unicorn with his height, speed and body control, and he was able to shine despite very limited receiving help in Atlanta. It will be interesting to see how they use him and top-ten pick Drake London (USC) this season.

#67. Brian Burns, Carolina Panthers

Carolina Panthers v Atlanta Falcons
Carolina Panthers v Atlanta Falcons

To be honest, it would have been nice to put Brian Burns a little higher, because I was a big fan of him coming out of Florida State. I thought he’d stay on his recent trajectory to become one of the premier edge rushers in the NFL. Last season, that somewhat stagnated, as he put up nearly identical numbers to 2020, with 21 tackles for loss, 18 sacks, 39 QB hits, eight PBUs and five forced fumbles combined.

BRIAN BURNS STRIP SACK https://t.co/l4u9ph0qXY

Now, much of this lack of increase in production had to do with operating from negative game-script situations. He was, after all, playing for a team that lost all but two of their 14 final games. Burns is one of the biggest speed threats off the corner that in the NFL.

#66. Ryan Ramczyk, New Orleans Saints

Houston Texans v New Orleans Saints
Houston Texans v New Orleans Saints

Tristan Wirfs has probably taken the title of best right tackle in the NFL today. After that, we can have a conversation about two other guys who should be next. Ryan Ramczyk has been a model of consistency, with last season being his first of five with more than one game missed and in terms of how seldom he loses.

Only once has he surrendered more than two sacks in a season and his PFF run-blocking grade of 91.4 since entering the league gives him the highest WAR (wins above replacement) for any tackle across that stretch.

#65. Matthew Judon, New England Patriots

Miami Dolphins v New England Patriots
Miami Dolphins v New England Patriots

Looking back at the 2021 list, Matthew Judon would have been in the 130’s on the original blue-print. I have always liked him as a player and he was one of the key figures for that Ravens defense over a few years. But when he signed his big free-agent deal with New England, Judon really took off.

Matthew Judon has been a pass rushing force since joining the Patriots this offseason.🔥https://t.co/JmdPZH6uYj

In the 2021 NFL campaign, he racked up 14 tackles for loss, career-highs in sacks (12.5) and additional pressures (42). This gave him the fifth-highest pressure rate among EDGEs (16.0%), as the one true disruptor this defense had, other than rookie Christian Barmore.

#64. Antoine Winfield Jr., Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Super Bowl LV
Super Bowl LV

Once again, in the safety conversation, you kind of have those five guys at the top that people look at as having a little separation from the rest. But the next name up is Antoine Winfield Jr. who has been a phenomenal addition to this Buccaneers secondary. They used him in a variety of ways to make coverages work, including as a deep middle safety when they used to rotate Jordan Whitehead down.

Antoine Winfield Jr. MOSSED HIM for the INT 🤯(via @Buccaneers)https://t.co/NLOucw4grE

In 13 games last NFL season, he forced two fumbles, intercepted two passes and broke up another six, while his yards per target and touchdowns allowed improved notably from his rookie campaign.

#63. Kyler Murray, Arizona Cardinals

Buffalo Bills v Arizona Cardinals
Buffalo Bills v Arizona Cardinals

All the offseason drama and trade rumors have somewhat taken away from the player Kyler Murray really is. You can certainly point to the drop-off we've seen from Arizona’s offense and their young signal-caller over the latter halves of the past two NFL seasons. But you can put a lot of the blame on Kliff Kingsbury’s inability to adapt his offense.

Happy 25th Birthday, Kyler Murray! https://t.co/rhp6DZvjRZ

The Cardinals would have been foolish not to sign Murray to a long-term deal. His completion percentage, TD-to-INT ratio and yards per attempt have all increased in each of his three years in the NFL. This is while bailing out an offense that routinely dies if the replacement for DeAndre Hopkins can't win their one-on-one on the backside. Murray regularly moves around and somehow creates a secondary play.

#62. Corey Linsley, Los Angeles Chargers

Los Angeles Chargers v Washington Football Team
Los Angeles Chargers v Washington Football Team

The distance has closed down to some degree between the top centers in the NFL with a couple of younger guys emerging, but Corey Linsley still ranks at the top of that list. While other additions certainly played their part, he was key in turning around a rough Los Angeles Chargers offensive line. As such, they did a much better job of protecting their young stud quarterback Justin Herbert.

Linsley wasn’t responsible for a single sack and allowed a pressure on just 1.48% of his snaps in pass-protection, whilst L.A. as a whole averaged 0.5 yards more per rush (4.3) compared to the 2020 NFL season.

#61. Ceedee Lamb, Dallas Cowboys

Philadelphia Eagles v Dallas Cowboys
Philadelphia Eagles v Dallas Cowboys

Ceedee Lamb could really blow up this fall. He’s already an excellent receiver, catching 79 passes for 1,100 yards and six touchdowns last season. He did provide some big plays, but it was more about moving the chains with him and converting 54 of those grabs into first downs.

CeeDee Lamb just shook Malcolm Jenkins https://t.co/wEB73ZECAj

Lamb is really tough to mirror with his unpredictable route-running and he’s a YAC specialist, breaking 12 total tackles and averaging 5.6 yards post-snap last season. His one issue in the NFL has been drops, with eight in each of his first two years.

For more in-depth breakdowns of the NFL and college football, head over to halilsrealfootballtalk.com and the YouTube channel.


Edited by John Maxwell

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