Another week, another batch of 20 players unveiled on the annual NFL Top 100 Players list. Each year, players are asked to casttheir votes for their projected top players in the NFL for the upcoming season. Each year, they show the football world why players are typically a poor judge of other players’ talent. On the 2013 list, there were no St. Louis Rams projected to be in the Top 100, despite having two defensive ends with 10+ sacks and a middle linebacker that led the NFL in solo tackles at the end of the 2012 season. Moreover, Janoris Jenkins had led the NFL in defensive touchdowns as a rookie, and Steven Jackson had just notched his eighth-consecutive 1,000+ season in the league. Still not votes. So, what should we expect for the 2014 list?
Well, Robert Quinn will obviously be on the list, after filling the trophy case with his first 1st-team All-Pro designation and his first Pro Bowl invitation. In fact, he was among four of the first captains of the “new” Pro Bowl, after finishing the season with 19.0 sacks and seven forced fumbles, leading to him being voted as the Professional Football Writers of America’s 2013 Defensive Player of the Year. Outside of Quinn, it is anyone’s guess who will end up in the Top 100 for 2014 rankings.
Zac Stacy finished the year with nearly 1,000 yards in only 12 games, leading the league in rushing yards for a majority of the season from Week 5 through the end of the year. Alec Ogletree ranked Top 10 in solo tackles and 3rd overall in forced fumbles (6). Jake Long finished the season graded 8th overall among offensive tackles, and 2nd overall as a run blocker (via Pro Football Focus). Tavon Austin showed some dynamic abilities in the latter portion of the year, finished the year with six touchdowns, including one rushing and one on a 95+ yard punt return. Will any of them make the list?
On Wednesday, the NFL released players No.81-90, adding to the previously released No.91-100. So far, no Rams have cracked the list. In fact, the list may be a little disheartening, with Pro Bowl studs like Cameron Jordan, Eric Weddle, and T.J. Ward ranked relatively low in the Top 100. Even Sheldon Richardson, the 2013 Defensive Rookie of the Year, barely snuck onto the list, ranking No.94. Only time will tell how the rest of the list will play out, but for now, it does not look promising for the St. Louis Rams.