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    • michael89156

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      2014 NFL Rankings: 10 Most Underrated Players In Football By Cooper Allen June 30, 2014 7:39 pm david_zps6bf09aff.pngUnderrate: To rate or evaluate too low; underestimate. That is the official definition of the word, according to dictionary.com. While you may know some or all of the players featured in this article, that does not necessarily mean they are rated correctly.Some individuals are discussed a lot more often than others, but it is not always in a positive manner. This list culminates a group of men, some of which are overlooked, unknown to the average fan or unfairly criticized. Each man contributes greatly to their respective team, but for one reason or another, do not get the credit they deserve.Here are the 10 most underrated players in the NFL.Ben RoethlisbergerFantasy football players tend not to like him because he does not put up the big numbers that Aaron Rodgers and Peyton Manning do. Non-fantasy playing fans like to criticize his accomplishments because of how “great” the Pittsburgh defense is.Don’t get me wrong, the Steelers had a feared defensive group early in Roethlisberger’s career, including the Super Bowl years. With that being said, there comes a point in time where the quarterback has to make a play and Ben consistently made the plays he needed to win.Big Ben has been a top seven quarterback in this league for many years and you could make a pretty strong argument for him being top five. As the Steelers defense has gotten worse with age, Roethlisberger continues to carry the team and put up solid numbers, despite playing behind one of the NFL’s worst offensive lines.Matt ForteIt is mind boggling how so many analysts can overlook this guy. Sure, Chicago has not been to the playoffs since 2010 and may not get the same publicity as other teams, but the talent speaks for itself.Throughout Forte’s career, the Bears have not had top tier quarterback play, their offensive line has been slightly above average at best and the passing game was not feared by anyone until last year. In spite of that, the lowest amount of total yards Matt Forte has had in a single season is 1,400.He averages over 1,600 yards per season and has been one of the best dual-threat running backs in the league since entering in 2008.Antonio BrownWhile I do believe that he was overrated in the NFL Network top 100 countdown, he is definitely underrated in other media outlets. Antonio Brown checked in at No. 23 on that top 100 list, but a lot of people still do not consider him a top 10 wide receiver. In fact, I have talked to people who have said he is not a No. 1 receiver.I do not understand these comments. He has gotten better each season and was finally able to put it all together in 2013, stepping up in a time when the Steelers desperately needed help at the position.Brown caught 110 passes last year for 1,499 yards and found the end zone eight times. These types of numbers put him right up there with Calvin Johnson and AJ Green, statistics-wise. By no means is he on that level, but he certainly does not get enough credit for the year he just had.Kyle RudolphSince catching 53 passes for 493 yards and nine touchdowns in 2012 and being named the MVP of the Pro Bowl, Kyle Rudolph’s name has been on the down low. He missed 8 games in 2013 with a broken foot, but was on pace to set a career-high in receptions and receiving yards.If he is healthy for a full season in 2014, there is no reason why he cannot make the Pro Bowl again. With Teddy Bridgwater replacing Christian Ponder, Rudolph should put up some solid numbers and get some more publicity. In a year from now, it wouldn’t surprise me if people are talking about him as a top tight end.Evan MathisThe fact that Evan Mathis is not being talked about like he is one of the best football players in the world makes him underrated. He is a top 20 player in the NFL, easily the best at his position and I would even go as far as to say the top offensive lineman.The 32-year-old offensive guard has allowed just three sacks in his last 54 starts. In 2013, he allowed pressure only once every 49 snaps and, as evident by LeSean McCoy’s year, was second to none in terms of run blocking.Calais CampbellIn 2013, Calais Campbell finished second among all 3-4 defensive ends in quarterback hurries, tied for second in quarterback hits and batted passes and finished third in sacks. If you asked a lot of football junkies to rank 4-3 defensive ends, though, most of them would probably leave Campbell out of the top three.By no means is he on JJ Watt’s level, but barely anyone talks about him outside of Arizona. He is probably the team’s best kept secret and someone who will make multiple Pro Bowls in his career.Rob Ninkovich All you have to do is listen to the Patriots game on the radio to know what type of player Rob Ninkovich is. You will hear announcers say his name many times throughout the course of a game as he is involved in just about every play. Outside of these games, however, it is rare to see anything in the media about him.He is consistently making things happen and is a big part of why the Patriots were able to return to the playoffs again in 2013. In 16 starts, Ninkovich recorded 91 tackles, eight sacks and graded out as the top run defender among 4-3 defensive ends.John AbrahamWhen the Atlanta Falcons released him in the 2013 offseason, many people seemed to forget about John Abraham. No one really batted an eye when he signed with Arizona and even after he recorded 11.5 sacks and forced four fumbles with the team, no one really made anything of it.Sure, he was named to the Pro Bowl, but the focus certainly was not on him. Heading into 2014, no one is really talking about him at all. When most talk about the Arizona defense, Patrick Peterson and Tyrann Mathieu are the names that are brought up. It almost seems as if they forget that the Cardinals have a guy with over 130 career sacks in their front seven.Lavonte DavidI said in my top 100 players of 2014 piece that Lavonte David is underrated and I will continue to say it until he gets the credit he deserves. He has 139 and 145 tackles in each of his first two seasons and stepped it up in 2013 with an additional seven sacks, five interceptions and two forced fumbles. He also allowed just one touchdown, despite being targeted 81 times throughout the season.Even with these great numbers, David has yet to be invited to a Pro Bowl and was easily one of 2013’s biggest snubs. He is one of the best defensive players in the game today and it is time people start talking about him like so.Chris Harris Jr. When the Denver Broncos are the topic of discussion, people are more than likely talking about the team’s offense. When they talk about the defense, it is usually about Von Miller. Even if the secondary ever came up in the conversation it would be about Champ Bailey and/or Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.What should be noted, however, is the play of Chris Harris Jr. He played in over 1,000 snaps in 2013, was thrown at 89 times, and yet only gave up one touchdown all season long. Losing him for the conference championship game and Super Bowl hurt the Broncos defense a ton. He tore his ACL in the playoffs against San Diego, but no one seemed to care about that storyline during Super Bowl media week. link

    • Anonymous

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      I agree with forte, LD, and mathis. The rest feel like they don’t fit this discussion for one reason or another.

    • Anonymous

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      David is under the radar because he doesn’t play an important position.

    • Anonymous

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      Forte is still underrated? I thought it was pretty much universally accepted now that he’s right behind Shady and AP as far as elite backs go?

    • Anonymous

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      David is under the radar because he doesn't play an important position.

      ^ This guy lolooooool

    • Anonymous

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      David is under the radar because he plays in Tampa.

      Fixed this for you

    • Anonymous

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      David is under the radar because he doesn't play an important position.

      ^ This guy lolooooool

      Freeman's little brother is at it again.

    • Anonymous

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      David is under the radar because he doesn't play an important position.

      Is that why Brooks was a former Defensive Player of the Year and 1st ballot Hall of Famer?

    • Anonymous

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      David is under the radar because he doesn't play an important position.

      Is that why Brooks was a former Defensive Player of the Year and 1st ballot Hall of Famer?

      Game has changed in the last 10-15 years if you haven't noticed.

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