2013 NFL Top 100: where did Peyton Manning and Von Miller finish?

USA TODAY Sports

Peyton Manning and Von Miller were the last two Broncos standing amongst 8 other NFL players, here's how the Countdown went:

10. Patrick Willis, LB, San Francisco 49ers

Was voted 10th despite seeing a drop off in his career numbers across the board. Willis posted 120 tackles (88 solo) to go along with 1 forced fumble, 2 INT's, and half a sack. Willis has now been selected to the pro bowl every season as a pro (6 straight years) and has been a 1st team all pro for four consecutive seasons.

9. Von Miller, LB, Denver Broncos

If not for JJ Watt's insane campaign in 2012, Von is your DPOY. Von Miller is in a very elite group to have recorded 30 sacks in his first two seasons as a pro. Von recorded 6 forced fumbles, had a pick 6, and batted down a couple of balls. Miller time in Denver meant a bad time for opposing offenses as he proved to be just as beastlike in run support as he did rushing the passer. Von ranked in the top 5 in sacks, forced fumbles, tackles for losses. He was voted all pro for the 1st time to go along with his 2nd consecutive pro bowl. Pro Football Focus ranked Von #1 amongst all OLB and edge pass rushers.

8. Arian Foster, RB, Houston Texans

Once again proved to be the most valuable piece to the Texans offense. As Foster goes so do Matt Schaub and Andre Johnson. Foster eclipsed the 1,200 yard mark for the third consecutive season gaining 1424 yards on 351 carries (a career high. The zone running beast also caught at least 40 balls for the 3rd consecutive season. Altogether Foster posted 1,641 all purpose yards to go along with 17 total TD's. Foster has been voted to three consecutive pro bowls.

7. Aldon Smith, LB, San Francisco 49ers

For registering 19.5 sacks, Aldon Smith sure is overrated. His sheer number of pass rushing snaps when compared with his actual production puts him middle of the pack. Sacks like TD passes are sexy numbers, and there's no way this one dimensional players deserves to be in the top 10.

6. Aaron Rodgers, QB, Green Bay Packers

Finished 2013 with the highest QBR amongst all starting QB's. Aaron posted his 4th 4,000 yard passing season in 5 years. He was the stability of a Packers offense that faced so many injuries along the offensive line and at the skill position. Despite this, Rodgers posted a fantastic 1.4 INT % tossing only 8 picks in 552 attempts. His 39 TD's fall just short of the 45 he tossed a year before. He led his team to their fourth consecutive 10-win season and was voted to the pro bowl.

5. J.J. Watt, DE, Houston Texans

Had the best year out of any defensive player in the NFL. Watt surged into the record books as an interior pass rusher racking up an outstanding 20.5 sacks. What makes Watt so special as a player is his ability to disrupt any play from the inside. Watt also logged an unheard of 16 passes defensed (batted down) to go along with 4 forced fumbles. Watt led the league in tackles for loss. An amazing year for this All Pro and DPOY, well deserving of his accolades!

4. Tom Brady, QB, New England Patriots

Brady led the Pats to their 9th AFC East title in 10 seasons. He completed 401 passes on 637 attempts for 4,827 yards, 34 TD's, and 8 INT's to go along with a 98.7 QBR. Brady was voted to his 10th career Pro Bowl and has posted 10-double digit win seasons in 11 full years as a starter. He leads all active quarterbacks with a .777 winning percentage as well as 5 super bowl appearances and three titles.

3. Calvin Johnson, WR, Detroit Lions

What a record setting year! Calvin Johnson broke Jerry Rice longstanding receiving yards record with 1964 yards in 2013. He caught 122 balls total for an astounding 16.1 average per reception. Though he experienced a drop off in TD numbers, Calvin beat rolled coverages week in and week out posting 8 consecutive 100 yard receiving games. Megatron was 1st team All Pro and a pro bowler for the 2nd consecutive season.

2. Peyton Manning, QB, Denver Broncos

Led his team to a 13-3 record and playoff berth in his first season back after a devastating neck injury sidelined him in 2011. Others might laud the seasons that Aaron Rodgers, Drew Brees, and Tom Brady had at the QB position, but they did so in familiar situations under familiar circumstances. Manning set Broncos records in completions (400), completion percentage (68.6), yards (4,659), and TD's (37). He passed Brett Favre with most games with at least 3 TD's passing (73), was named AFC Offensive Player of the Week for the 22nd time, led his team to a 10 win season for the 12th time, and was voted to his 12th pro bowl. Peyton was also voted 1st team All-Pro.

1. Adrian Peterson, RB, Minnesota Vikings

Coming off an ACL injury late in 2011, AP bounced back to have one of the most impressive seasons for a running back in NFL history. In 2012 AP rushed for 2097 yards, coming just shy of breaking Eric Dickerson's all time record of 2105 yards. What is amazing about his season was the fact that he averaged 6.0 yards per carry over the course of 348 carries!. Peterson averaged 131.1 rushing yards per game and posted 8 consecutive 100 yard games. AP was voted to his 5th pro bowl in 6 seasons and was also named 1st team all pro for the 3rd time.

My Take

Aldon Smith should NEVER be ahead of Willis or Von Miller

Look we all know what a craptacular smoz fest this list is, but lets get a few things straight. Patrick Willis is a great all around, every down player just like Von Miller, and Von Miller is the best pass rusher.

Here's the stat line,

Smith: 649 pass rush snaps, 72 hits/hurries/pressures, 19.5 sacks

Miller: 498 pass rush snaps, 86 hits/hurries/pressures, 18.5 sacks.

Miller is far more efficient with his pass rushing opportunities. And he's far more impactful in the running game.

J.J. Watt should be 4th, Aaron Rodgers should be 5th

Watt barely cracked the top 5, he deserves to be a spot ahead of Tom Brady and Aaron Rodgers should be ahead of Tom Brady.

Manning is the last QB standing, this they got right

In any other year, Aaron Rodgers is the top QB. But again, what Peyton Manning overcame gives him the nod over every QB on the list after the amazing season he had. If things are so close statistically, tie goes to the guy who over came a career threatening injury that sidelined him for the better part of a year and a half.

New team, new receivers and Manning puts up career numbers just about across the board. #18 as the last QB standing is the right choice

AP is #1

If AP doesn't have like 200 yards rushing that final regular season game, finishing 8 yards shy of Dickerson, Manning is both #1 and the NFL MVP. As it stands, AP's season was truly historic and I have no problem with him at #1

Other Broncos to make the list:

Demaryius Thomas #68

Wes Welker #44

Champ Bailey #53

What do you think about the top 10 MHR?

Von Miller ownage of Cam "I'm scared outta my boots" Newton


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