After seeing Blake's Tennessee Titan piece, I felt I'd take my own crack at rating my hometown Green Bay Packers.
I remember always getting the new version of Madden for my PS2, putting it in, and being simply devastated with the horribly bad or far-off ratings of my favorite players.
The catching, strength, injury, and speed is almost always off to some degree, which inevitably would affect the overall rating of each player.
Obviously it's not all bad, and rating each NFL player isn't an exact science, but it's also an interesting thought and practice.
Read on for a basic breakdown of every projected Green Bay starter, their rating (by me), and a brief analysis.
QB Aaron Rodgers 89
Rodgers put up 31 combined touchdowns and over 4,000 passing yards last season, which is more than enough to get him in the high 80's.
However, his IQ is still lower than most quarterbacks due to his lack of late-game heroics, as well as his mere 6 wins as a starter.
His injury rating would have held up find in 2008, but I'm not so sure he'll be so lucky in the future.
Another season like last year should catapult him to a 92 rating or better.
RB Ryan Grant 85
Grant put up solid numbers for a starter (1,200 yards), but scored a meager four touchdowns on the ground.
He's not an overly gifted receiver, and he tends to run into piles too often, routinely missing wide open gaps.
With suspect vision, nagging injuries, and an at-times sketchy offensive line, rating him above 85 seems like a crime.
RB Brandon Jackson 80
Jackson isn't as far behind Grant as people think. He's come a long way as far as learning the offense, and has shown in spurts that he could handle the load as a starter.
He has decent speed and good vision, while he continues to improve as a receiver.
FB Korey Hall 82
Hall has been an adequate lead-blocker for Green Bay, but fullback isn't his natural position, and he tends to share time with Green Bay's other fullback, John Kuhn.
Also, with the addition of LSU's Quinn Johnson, Hall's role may be reduced.
WR Greg Jennings 95
Jennings no longer has "deceptive" speed. He's just plain old fast.
The guy can burn and get past the secondary, as justified by his solid 14+ YPC. He's a TD machine, too, and with Rodgers getting more comfortable, he'll only get better.
WR Donald Driver 87
Driver may be 34, but he can still play, and he's got some life in those legs.
He's still good for 70-85 catches and 1,000 yards.
WR Jordy Nelson 79
I truly think Nelson is on the brink of being a good receiver, and the only thing stopping him is the position in the offense he plays.
His body and style of play are designed for a vertical game, not running slants in the slot.
I think Driver should wind up operating more out of the slot in 2008, while Nelson gets more looks on deep balls and goal-line opportunities.
TE Donald Lee 83
Lee is a serviceable tight end, but his only "truly" good season was with Brett Favre at the helm.
Favre always loved his tight ends, and he probably made Lee look better than he actually was.
Lee has solid speed for a tight end, but his hands and blocking are both suspect.
LT Chad Clifton 85
Clifton isn't as fluid as he once was, and is getting older and slower ad the years go by.
Still, with his experience and knowledge, he's still one of the better linemen in the NFC North.
LG Daryn Colledge 82
Colledge is a beast of a man with not much skill to go with his brute strength.
He still has a lot of learning to do, despite playing almost every game since his rookie year.
C Scott Wells 87
Wells is probably Green Bay's most consistent and reliable lineman, and he excels in the ground game (as most linemen often do).
RG Jason Spitz 84
Spitz is an underrated guard who has excellent versatility.
He can play center or either guard position, and could even spot-fill at a tackle position, if needed.
RT Allen Barbre 81
Barbre needs to prove himself, but unless Mark Tauscher re-signs for cheap, he's the guy on the right side.
LE B.J. Raji 83
Raji is a rookie and playing somehwat out of position. I see him as the future inside tackle, but he's too good to not have playing right away.
DT Ryan Pickett 86
I still think Pickett is a dominant run-stopper, and can fill up holes in the ground game. His downside is his lack of pass-rushing skills.
This fact will see him rotating in and out with rookie B.J. Raji.
RE Cullen Jenkins 85
Jenkins was off to a solid start before getting hurt and going on IR in 2008.
If he can return to full health, he can help the Packers defense get back to respectability.
OLB Aaron Kampman 83
As a DE, Kampman is easily in the 90's, but with a transition to a new position and a new defensive system, he drops down, considerably.
I still like his work ethic and ability enough to think he can still be a dominant player, but not necessarily in year one.
MLB A.J. Hawk 86
I still feel that Hawk has the talent and athleticism to be great in this league, and now that he's at his more natural middle-linebacker position, I can see it happening.
He was never meant to be covering tight ends and receivers. He's meant to scour the middle of the field.
MLB Nick Barnett 88
Barnett has to come back from injury and learn a new defense, but his responsibilities will remain the same, for the most part.
He's still the best linebacker on this team until Hawk makes the leap, or Kampman shocks the world.
OLB Jeremy Thompson 81
Thompson has been getting all kinds of praise throughout the off-season, so he is currently the projected starter.
His athleticism and size suggest he could be a perfect fit for Dom Capers' new 3-4 system.
CB Al Harris 85
Many would have Harris up in the 90's or high 80's, but I think it's obvious that he's regressing.
He's 34, and can't be left on an island by himself with a receiver anymore.
I'm sure Green Bay will continue to use him as they have, but with lessened speed, it will become more and more clear that his career is coming to a close.
CB Charles Woodson 92
Woodson is one of the most underrated defensive backs in the entire league. Like Harris, he's getting up there in age, but Woodson is still a premier play-maker and disruptor.
He seems to always be around the ball, is strong and aggressive in attacking the ball and offensive players, and simply makes things happen.
His injury rating has only gone up since coming to Green Bay, as he's been mostly healthy for his entire time with the Packers.
S Nick Collins 94
Collins is an athletic play-maker with solid coverage skills and a nose for the ball.
Contract negotiations aside, he's primed for another big year in a new defense that creates opportunities for the secondary.
S Atari Bigby 85
Bigby is slightly overrated, as he takes too many chances, and gets burned more than his team would like to admit.
However, he's a solid ball-hawk with a hard-hitting mentality, and is a true defensive weapon for his team.
K Mason Crosby 88
He had a sensational rookie season, and then had a bit of a sophomore slump.
That will happen to any kicker with the elements and pressure of playing in cold winters and other ridiculous conditions.
He has the talent and attitude to get up over 90, though, and I'm sure he will.
Note: I don't rate punters or long snappers. Making them feel like they're actually football players is like saying soup is a meal. It's a bold-faced lie.