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NFL.com: 2007 All-Underrated Team (Guess which Cowboy Made the Team)

Discussion in 'NFL Zone' started by theogt, Jun 19, 2007.

  1. theogt

    theogt Surrealist Zone Supporter

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    2007 All-Underrated team [IMG]
    By Dave Gladow
    NFL.com

    (June 19, 2007) -- Last year, like most years, the NFL saw several players post great seasons and yet fail to receive proper recognition for their efforts.

    It's a common theme. For whatever reason, some players just don't seem to get their due.

    In an attempt to help change that, I'm presenting my All-Underrated team for public consumption. This is a starting 22 of players who had great seasons in 2006 and yet are still flying under the radar headed into 2007.

    I'm making no promises that any of these players can repeat what they accomplished last year, let alone improve. What I am saying is that they should be applauded for what they did last year and that folks would be wise to keep an eye on their 2007 performances -- it wouldn't surprise me to see some Pro Bowlers emerge from this group.

    2007 All-Underrated team

    Damon Huard, QB, Chiefs -- Last season, Huard posted an 11-to-1 touchdowns-to-interceptions ratio and a 98.0 quarterback rating in relief of the injured Trent Green. He was promptly benched when Green came back. In the offseason, he was rewarded with a new contract and Green was traded, sparking new optimism. Now, the word in Kansas City is that second-year man Brodie Croyle (who has attempted seven passes and been intercepted twice) is the favorite to start. When even your own team underrates you to that degree, you deserve to be on this list.

    Fred Taylor, RB, Jaguars -- He was overshadowed last year by his teammate Maurice Jones-Drew, but for the sixth time in his career Taylor rushed for at least 1,100 yards while averaging at least 4.6 yards per carry. He's gotten the "Fragile Fred" tag with good reason, but there's no reason this man should be an 0-fer for his career in Pro Bowl nods with that kind of track record.

    Dan Kreider, FB, Steelers -- Pittsburgh is one of the few teams that still regularly uses a fullback, and Kreider is one of the best. The Steelers averaged a respectable 124.5 yards per game and 4.2 yards per carry last year with Kreider paving the way.

    Laveranues Coles, WR, Jets -- Coles has averaged 85 catches and 1,072 yards over the past five seasons, culminating in a 91-catch season last year, yet he never seems to get the credit he deserves. He gets it here.

    Mike Furrey, WR, Lions -- Entering his fourth NFL season, Furrey had recorded 21 career catches. In 2006, he notched 98 to go with 1,086 yards and six touchdowns. Furrey has limited explosiveness (as evidenced by his zero catches over 31 yards), but he shined as a possession receiver last year and few people outside the fantasy realm even noticed.

    Owen Daniels, TE, Texans -- Houston had options at tight end last year, so it was a surprise when a rookie, Daniels, came on to start 12 games and score five touchdowns (on 34 catches for 352 yards). He should continue to be a major factor in the Texans passing attack.

    Chad Clifton, OT, Packers -- A seven-year veteran, Clifton has done a solid job for the Packers over his career. Last year, he was charged with protecting Brett Favre's blind side and Favre was sacked just 21 times ... which ranked in the bottom third of the league.

    Justin Smiley, G, 49ers -- Last year, the 49ers improved their rushing average by 20 yards (135.8 from 105.6) and their yards per carry by a whole yard (4.9 from 3.9). Obviously, the addition of Larry Allen was a big factor in that, but equally important was the continued development of Smiley, a third-year player who really played well despite having to fight through injuries. If healthy, he could be even better.

    Nick Mangold, C, Jets -- As a rookie he stepped right in for the departed Kevin Mawae at center and the team didn't miss a beat. While fellow top pick D'Brickashaw Ferguson had his ups and downs at tackle, Mangold was as solid as a rock in the middle. He looks like a fixture at the spot for at least the next 12 years.

    Kris Dielman, G, Chargers -- The Chargers wisely came through with a big contract for Dielman this offseason, keeping one of the cornerstones of their offensive line in town for the foreseeable future. Fans will be certain to hear more of his name in the coming seasons.

    Jason Peters, OT, Bills -- Peters is one of the rising stars in the NFL. A converted tight end who came into the league as a true project, Peters has already blossomed into a solid offensive tackle in Buffalo. The scary part is he may not be done improving -- a rough proposition for opposing defenders.

    Robert Geathers, DE, Bengals -- A breakout season for Geathers in 2006 went largely unnoticed among fans and media, but the Bengals (like the Chargers with Dielman) paid attention and, more importantly, paid Geathers with a brand-new contract. Geathers notched 10 1/2 sacks in just his third season in the league. More impressively, it was the first double-digit sack performance by a Bengals player since 1992.

    Kelly Gregg, DT, Ravens -- Four separate players on the Ravens defense recorded at least 9 1/2 sacks last year. That doesn't happen by accident. The space-eating Gregg, who is an expert at occupying multiple blockers, is a big reason why. Allowing the team's athletic pass rushers free reign at the quarterback, Gregg does the dirty work that rarely gets noticed. Except here.

    Ty Warren, DT, Patriots -- Often a defensive end, other times a tackle, Warren's game is versatility in the Patriots' ever-changing defensive front. And while he can do many things, the important thing to note is that he does all of them very well. Warren had a career year in 2006 with 84 tackles and 7 1/2 sacks, and opposing offenses can no longer simply gameplan for fellow defensive lineman Richard Seymour. Seymour still gets the recognition among fans thanks to his Pro Bowl appearances, but Warren is quickly becoming his equal in on-field accomplishments. He should have been in Hawaii last year.

    Mark Anderson, DE, Bears -- There's nothing wrong with including a few specialists on this list, and Anderson is certainly that with just 28 total tackles last year. However, the explosive rookie also recorded an impressive 12 sacks as a situational pass rusher on a dominant Bears defense, making him a player to watch in 2007 ... especially with Alex Brown on the trading block.

    DeMeco Ryans, LB, Texans -- As the less-celebrated defensive rookie on the Texans (behind first-overall pick Mario Williams), Ryans did not play second fiddle to anyone in 2006, leading the NFL in tackles with 125. It wasn't a fluke either. Ryans proved adept at the mundane chore of filling lanes, but he also made his share of big plays with 3 1/2 sacks, a forced fumble and an interception.

    Kirk Morrison, LB, Raiders -- An unheralded player out of San Diego State, Morrison was pressed into immediate action as a rookie for a team weak at linebacker. He quickly made it into a strength, recording 91 tackles in his first season. Last year, he followed that performance up with 101 tackles, a sack, two interceptions, a fumble forced and a defensive touchdown on a fumble recovery. There's no reason not to expect even more in 2007.

    Demorrio Williams, LB, Falcons -- Another player who is thought more of as a specialist, Williams is one of the top nickel linebackers in the league. A young player with great range, Williams' best season came in 2005 when he notched 127 total tackles. Last year, his numbers dipped, but he still recorded two passes defensed and an interception to go along with his 90 total tackles. If he works hard, he could become a special player.

    Nnamdi Asomugha, CB, Raiders -- It's hard to ignore eight interceptions, but Pro Bowl voters did just that last year in not awarding Asomugha a trip to Hawaii. The young athlete has gotten better every season since he entered the league in 2003, and among many scouts and coaches he's now regarded as one of the best cornerbacks in the NFL.

    Terence Newman, CB, Cowboys -- It should be a crime that Newman has yet to be elected to the Pro Bowl, particularly after his masterful 2006 season. In an era when cornerbacks rarely hold their own in downfield coverage, Newman regularly wins one-on-one matchups in the deep sector of the field, so much so that teams rarely even throw at him anymore ... hurting his interception totals. Newman's ability to match up one-on-one with the opposition's best receiver also allows safety Roy Williams to do the freelancing he does (which incidentally gets him voted to the Pro Bowl and keeps Newman out). Newman is simply one of the best in the game and should be regarded as such.

    Kerry Rhodes, S, Jets -- As a rookie, Rhodes established himself as a steady player in the secondary with his 105 total tackles. Last season, he stepped his game up to an all-pro level, keeping his tackles up (98) while also recording five sacks, four interceptions and nine passes defensed. He's one of the league's bright young stars.

    Donte Whitner, S, Bills -- He may have been a rookie, but he sure didn't play that way. Despite being derided for taking Whitner as high as they did in the draft (eighth overall), the Bills laughed last as Whitner instantly became the team's top defensive back in '06. The rookie notched 104 total tackles and an interception, and he'll look to improve on those numbers in 2007.
  2. ThreeSportStar80

    ThreeSportStar80 Benched

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    Yeah it's truly awful... Just because Newman doesn't self promote he gets left out the conversation of best CB's in the game.
  3. superpunk

    superpunk Benched

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    That's a pretty nice list, especially getting guys like Morrison, Geathers, and Asomugha on there. Noone gives a crap about Burgess, either, but he's fantastic.

    At this point on Newman, he's been on these underrated lists so long, I think people know he's good already. You know who's underrated on our team?

    Roy Williams. By virtue of erroneous "overrated" claims for the past three years. Wrap heads around that for awhile.

    Also Aaron Kampman and Jason Ferguson are underrated. We had one of the highest run stuffing success rates to the middle last year, and that was Ferguson dominating his assignment (no matter how archaic it was) for the most part.
  4. theogt

    theogt Surrealist Zone Supporter

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    I have zero doubt that Newman makes the pro bowl this year. It's become sort of league mantra (not just Coboys fans) that he's underrated.
  5. Chocolate Lab

    Chocolate Lab Run-loving Dino

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    I almost wonder if the Jerry P.R. machine is at work with Parcells gone or something. Newman's gotten more positive press the last few months than he's gotten in years -- without a game even being played.

    And the kicker is that he wasn't as good last year as he was the year before.
  6. Number82

    Number82 No Helmet; No Problem

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    WOW! Great list. I don't think I could have done a better job myself. Newman has got to make the Pro Bowl list this year. He should also make 1st-team All-Pro as well. I think he's arguably the best player on this team. The only player you could probably argue is better is DeMarcus Ware.
  7. Vintage

    Vintage The Cult of Jib

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    Yeah, but lots of people thought it last year too...and he didn't get in.

    You have to figure Barber and Hall are locks. I mean, if Hall can play as poorly as he did last year and still make it, you gotta figure he is going to a Pro Bowl year in, year out now. How many CBs get sent to the Pro Bowl? 3? 4?

    Lucas if healthy has the talent to be a Pro Bowler.... he isn't a lock.....
    Sheppard and Newman will also be fighting.
  8. superpunk

    superpunk Benched

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    When I read this post, I thought about the scene in Star wars where Vader strikes down Obi-Wan.

    Now that Parcells is gone, I'm realizing that he is more powerful than I could ever comprehend.

    PS: I love you.
  9. 5Stars

    5Stars Here comes the Sun... Zone Supporter

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    Isn't it funny, punk...everything that went wrong with the Cowboys somehow was Parcells fault?

    :confused:

    Yeah, he did not accomplish what he set out to do, but this team is way better for him being here...whether anyone will admit it or not.

    But, this is a new era? We shall see?
  10. Chocolate Lab

    Chocolate Lab Run-loving Dino

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    :laugh2:

    I don't even get that, but it's funny...

    But anyway -- How was what I said a slam of Parcells at all? If anything, it's a slam on Jerry. Jerry loves to pimp his own players, especially the ones he drafted. I just can see Jerry telling every writer and person within sight, "You do know that other teams consistently tell us that Turnse Newmun is the best player on our team, doncha?" Maybe he wasn't so apt to tout his players so much when Parcells was here. That's all I'm saying.

    It's just weird that he seems to be getting more of these mentions than he ever did, even coming off a worse year than what he had the year before.
  11. Bob Sacamano

    Bob Sacamano Benched

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    hopefully McQ can become that promising, whether it be at OG or OT
  12. Bob Sacamano

    Bob Sacamano Benched

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    I see your point, any praise Jerry would shell out, Parcells would be ready w/ a quote to curb everyone's enthusiasm
  13. Vintage

    Vintage The Cult of Jib

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    Hopefully someone of the McQuistan, Free, or Marten does it....

    Would be nice...
  14. superpunk

    superpunk Benched

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    Slamming? No. But somehow in there, Parcells was keeping Newman from getting his due.

    It's not like people didn't notice him last year. He got noticed for shutting down Smith. Parcells praised him in camp, even dropping the no TDs allowed nugget we all loved so much from Adam. He was on underrated lists, independent columnist's all-pro lists, he just can't crack the pro-bowl. I guess it just takes your average pro-bowl voter a while to catch on. It doesn't help that most voters are on there to vote for DEs, QBs, WRs, and RBs, and don't care much for the other spots - so when NFL.com shows it's little summary next to the names, with the first stat being INTs, people just gloss over.

    Newman's been getting his due for awhile now. Until he ups that INT count, though, that same tired "Champ Bailey is the closest thing to..." well...you know the rest....will be repeated.
  15. Bob Sacamano

    Bob Sacamano Benched

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    yes it would
  16. Chocolate Lab

    Chocolate Lab Run-loving Dino

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    SP, I didn't even know I was blaming that on Parcells. My posts must be so deep, they're like, Henry James novels or something.

    Or, maybe the sensitivity level on your Parcells Defense Meter is a little overtuned right now. ;)

    Really, not everything is a slam on the man.

    (Does it seem like everyone has a little cabin fever lately?)
  17. superpunk

    superpunk Benched

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    You just can't help yourself. It's subconscious. I think it has to do with wanting to have sex with your mother. Ask Sigmund.

    Nothing I said was a defense - I'm just amused at what is attributed to the ex-coach now that he's gone.

    Julius was average - Parcells held him back.

    Newman wasn't getting DAP - Parcells was keeping Jerry from spreading propaganda

    PacMan makes it rain - Parcells has tits.

    That was the point of the obi-Wan thing. Parcells is gone/struck down, and he's become more powerful than I could ever imagine.
  18. Bob Sacamano

    Bob Sacamano Benched

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    Parcells sucks

    Goodell is king!
  19. CrazyCowboy

    CrazyCowboy Well-Known Member

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    Should of known--Newman.
  20. big dog cowboy

    big dog cowboy THE BIG DOG Staff Member

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    If TNew could have made a statement on punt returns like taking on all the way he would get more face time.

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