Stop Me If You Can: The X-Factors of the NFL

David ArreolaSenior Analyst IFebruary 23, 2009

You have all heard of the term: "X-Factor."

What is an X-Factor?

An X-Factor is an unknown variable. Something that cannot be predicted or planned.

Well, actually, it can be predicted. You can predict that this player will stand out from the rest.

Whether it is a huge sack on third down, or a kick-off returned for a TD, this player will make something happen to help their team win.

Last season we saw several X-Factors arise for each team.

I decided to compile a list of all 32 NFL team's X-Factors.

Who is your team's X-Factor?


Bears- Devin Hester

There is almost no doubt here. He is the kind of player that can take any play to the house with his sheer speed. Don't kick to Devin Hester.


Bengals- Chad Johnson?

I put a question mark because he has lost his step and there really aren't too many play makers on this team...sorry Bengals fans...maybe you can draft an X-Factor.


Bills- Roscoe Parrish/Lee Evans

These men are fast, real fast. Whoever is throwing to them next season will definitely enjoy their break away speed.


Broncos- Jay Cutler

A quarterback? What? Yes, that is right. Jay Cutler is an X-Factor. With a canon arm, he can turn a busted play in a touchdown. His mobility makes him a deadly quarterback.


Browns- Braylon Edwards

Ok, so maybe he can't catch a simple five-yard catch, but he can make a one-handed catch in double coverage. That is pretty X-Factor-esque.


Buccaneers- Antonio Bryant

Are you seeing a trend? Speed kills, badly. Problem for Bryant is he seems to have a new quarterback every other week...He can't get a rhythm with anyone.


Cardinals- Larry Fitzgerald

Kurt Warner must have the easiest job in the NFL. Throw anywhere in a 10-foot radius of Fitzgerald and he will catch the ball over anyone. Fitzgerald is also explosive and could possibly be the best receiver in the NFL.


Chiefs- Tony Gonzalez

How can an old dude like Gonzalez be an X-Factor? When he catches 96 balls for over 1,000 yards and 10 touchdowns.


Chargers- Antonio Cromartie

Why isn't it L.T? Because he is on the decline. Cromartie is a freakish athlete who can make the big plays. Such as a 109 yard play.


Colts- Peyton Manning

The best passer of his time, Manning can dissect a defense like nobody else alive. He will make your gameplans look stupid and your defense even stupider.


Cowboys- DeMarcus Ware

He does one thing and one thing alone, sack the quarterback. If he spent anymore time in the backfield, he will have to start paying RENT.


Dolphins- Ronnie Brown

Is there another back that means as much to his team's W's than Brown? If last season was any indication the answer is, no.


Eagles- Brian Westbrook

Westbrook is the most complete running back in the NFL. With that title, he is the X-Factor of the Eagles.


Falcons- Michael Turner

His first year in Atlanta has turned into a big one. With a budding star a quarterback, look for Turner to continue his big production. Who knows, will his young quarterback replace him on this list next year?


49ers- Patrick Willis

Anytime a linebacker can single-handedly scare the s*** out of your quarterback, he is an X-Factor. Willis absolutely dominates his position.


Giants- Brandon Jacobs/Ahmad Bradshaw/Derrick Ward

The good thing about the Giants running game, is that it never gets tired. These three need each other to be productive, no single back is complete without the other two.


Jaguars- Maurice Jones-Drew

Since his rookie season, MJD has been a huge part of the Jaguars offense. Now that Fred Taylor is out of town, he could become THE Jaguars offense.


Jets- Leon Washington

Leon Washington could be the single most explosive, game changing player in the NFL. He does it all. Kick returns, running, receiving. Leon Washington is the very definition on an X-Factor.


Lions- Calvin Johnson

He is a freak. Fast, tall and scary. Too bad he is the only one like that on the Lions.


Packers- Greg Jennings

Jennings is fast and deceptively athletic. His hands are money and he really competes when a ball is in the air. He has done wonders for his two quarterbacks and will continue to make the big plays.


Panthers- Steve Smith

Nobody his size is any better at wide receiver. He is too fast to catch and his will is too dominant to break. Steve Smith is a true competitor and a true X-Factor.


Patriots- Video Cameras...just kidding....Randy Moss

Pats fans, did you like that one? Haha, Randy Moss is a monster...That is all that is needed to be said.


Raiders- Nnamdi Asomugha

THE lock down corner in the NFL. Quarterbacks just don't throw his way; that is a bad idea.


Rams- Steven Jackson

Sorry, Torry Holt. When Jackson is at 100 percent he is tough to stop. Perhaps there isn't an X-Factor on this team...not even THE ORIGINAL X-Factor: Dante Hall.


Ravens- Ed Reed

Do I need to explain this one? He is a magnet to the ball, he can't exist without it. He makes the best quarterbacks look awful. Just ask Chad Pennington.


Redskins- Clinton Portis

Still in his prime, Portis is a fantastic combination of speed and power. Give him the ball 20 times, he will get you 120 yards.


Saints- Reggie Bush

Maybe he isn't the most productive player on this team, but if his two punt returns for TD's on MNF say anything, they say X-Factor.


Seahawks- Qwest Stadium

Man, it kinda stinks that your X-Factor can only participate in eight games a year...


Steelers- Ben Roethlisberger

Roethlisberger is a gutsy quarterback who throws his big frame around like a rag doll. I think Brett Favre when I see him dancing around and slinging the ball for first downs.


Texans- Andre Johnson

Speed, hands, intelligence. Andre Johnson is all of these things and then some. He simply amazes us every weekend with his football ability. X-Factor, hands down.


Titans- Chris Johnson

The only rookie to represent his team on my X-Factor list. Perhaps it has something to do with his blistering speed.


Vikings- Adrian Peterson

The best running back in the NFL carried his team to the playoffs this year. Give him a decent quarterback and he is winning Super Bowls. A.D. is the X-Factor of this team.