NFC North: 2011 Top Players Power Rankings

From Tuesday: Congratulations to the NFC North, which placed two players among the first six listed in ESPN.com's Power Rankings of the NFL's top 10 players. Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers finished No. 4 overall, while Minnesota Vikings tailback Adrian Peterson ranked No. 6.

You'll see that our list is pretty quarterback-heavy, accounting for the top four players and six of the top 10. So goes the position's importance, be it the Year of the Quarterback or the Year of the Rabbit. (It's both, actually.)

We debated Rodgers' standing among quarterbacks in April, and I continue to maintain my position that he deserves to be No. 2 behind Tom Brady of the New England Patriots. Simply put, that's why I voted Rodgers the No. 2 player in the league. As I noted in the award-winning video below, the No. 2 quarterback in the NFL is the No. 2 player for me.

For those who missed the original debate, I've included the chart I compiled to help explain why I ranked Rodgers ahead of Peyton Manning of the Indianapolis Colts and Drew Brees of the New Orleans Saints. For those wondering why I sentenced Brees to the No. 8 position, I just felt that I needed more diversity at the top and cut off the quarterback run with Manning at No. 3.


I gave Peterson his highest ranking at No. 4, and he was surprisingly left off three of the eight ballots. Ultimately, at No. 6, Peterson was the highest-ranked offensive player who isn't a quarterback.

I hope you've enjoyed the madness that has been our offseason Power Rankings. I know I've learned a lot, mostly about how seriously these lists are taken. Point noted.

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