All-Division Series (Two of Eight): NFC South

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All-Division Series (Two of Eight): NFC South

 

What makes a great division? Ponder that question for a second. No matter what your answer is, the answer is anything.

What falls under anything? You guessed it. Passion for your team and the rivalry from the other teams in the division drive a fan to defend their division over others.

There are many things that make the NFC South great. The one driving force in this division is the constant competitive nature of every team in it. Over the past decade this division has been up and down with every team.

Each year is a guessing game for this division, and I will be eager to see the standings at the end of next season.

For the All Division Series, this was a great division to cover and learn more about. While I did my best to represent each team, it is merely an opinion and any of the selections are up for debate.

If you have not read part one, it can be read below:

http://bleacherreport.com/articles/373500-all-division-series-1-of-8-afc-east

So there is one division completed right now, the AFC East, which I sense has an advantage with offense over most of the divisions. Read on and see how the NFC South stacks up.

 

Quarterback: Drew Brees (NO)

There should be no doubt with this pick. Brees is one of the most exciting players to watch in the NFL. He has the arm to deliver passes down field, tight rope a throw on the sideline, or make simple dump-off passes. He makes each throw with tremendous accuracy.

 

Running Back: DeAngelo Williams (CAR)/Jonathan Stewart (CAR)

A Carolina-Panther-represented backfield, these two running backs pack a one-two punch that is powerful, explosive, and effective. This could be the best backfield in the NFL.

 

Fullback: Brad Hoover (CAR)

Hoover has been around for years, and has been one of the most consistent fullbacks during that time.  He is a hard-nosed and powerful blocker.

 

Wide Receiver: Steve Smith (CAR)/Roddy White (ATL)/Marques Colston (NO)

This is a very deep group of receivers. Smith is an absolute play-maker, being able to make nothing into something. Roddy White is a deep threat that can burn any cornerback. Marques Colston is a sure-handed receiver who should be the go-to guy in any pressure situation. This group would make any defense cringe.

 

Tight End: Tony Gonzalez (ATL)

What else can you say about Gonzalez besides the fact that he is one of the best tight ends to ever play in the NFL? Everyone should cherish every moment they get to watch Tony play, because he is the kind of player you will be talking to your kids or your grandkids about in 30 years. He will be a NFL legend.

 

Offensive Tackle: Jordan Gross (CAR)/Jonathan Stinchomb (NO)

While there are no real kept statistical categories for offensive lineman, it is quite appararent Jordan Gross and Jonathan Stinchomb have been great tackles for their teams. True offensive prowess starts in the trenches, and without these guys, the offense would go nowhere.

 

Offensive Guard: Justin Blalock (ATL)/Jahri Evans (NO)

Two young-and-coming players, these two have anchored their respective offensive lines, and will continue to do so for many years.

 

Center: Ryan Kalil (CAR)

Starting every game since his entrance into the NFL, Kalil has proven he is one of the most consistent lineman in this division.

 

Defensive End (4-3): John Abraham (ATL)/Will Smith (NO)

John Abraham is still playing with extreme intensity despite his age. Will Smith (not the Fresh Prince of Bel Air), made it a habit of getting to the quarterback last season, a habit you want every defensive end to have.

 

Defensive Tackle (3-4): Jonathan Babineaux (ATL)/Sedrick Ellis (NO)

Not a flashy defensive line unit, these guys are the kind of blue collar players that get the job done and get it done right.

 

Middle Linebacker: Jon Beason (CAR)

This is a deep position in the division, but you can't argue against Beason. He is a consistent tackler like Jonathan Vilma and Barrett Ruud, but brings it to a new level on getting pressure on the quarterback and dropping back into coverage. Beason isn't talked about enough as being one of the best linebackers in the NFL.

 

Outside Linebacker: Geno Hayes (TB)/Mike Peterson (ATL)

This is a grouping of a play-making newcomer and the jack-of-all-trades veteran. Peterson has been a great linebacker ever since he came into the NFL, while Geno had a break-out year this season.

 

Cornerback: Chris Gamble (CAR)/Aqib Talib (TB)

This isn't a very deep group in this division, but they can definitely hold their own against the pass. These guys tend to fly under the radar as solid starting corners.

 

Strong Safety: Roman Harper (NO)

Not known for forcing many turnovers, Harper has made a name for himself as a sure tackler and a hard-hitter. He provides crucial run support for the Saints.

 

Free Safety: Darren Sharper (NO)

Darren Sharper, at 34 years old, did what no other defensive back could do before him: He gained more interception yards in a season than any player in NFL history with 376 yards off of nine interceptions. Ed Reed held the record before, amassing 358 yards.

 

Punter: Jason Baker (CAR)

Baker has the ability to kick the ball very far and pin an opponent inside the 20. In the NFL, field position is of utter importance, and Baker provides ample insurance when the team needs him.

 

Kicker: John Kasay (CAR)

While Kasay is not incredibly accurate, he has great range for a kicker. Being 40, he can still kick 50-yarders with some ease.

 

Punt Returner: Reggie Bush (NO)

Any time Reggie Bush gets the ball he has the ability to take it to the house. Though his 2009 season wasn't too successful in the return game, I have no doubt that he will continue to demand respect as a punt returner.

 

Kick Returner: Sammie Stroughter (TB)

As a rookie, Stroughter came out of nowhere as a returner and a receiver. He averaged a phenomenal 29.5 yards per return on kicks and took one to the house.

 

Honorable Mention :

Matt Ryan (QB)

Pierre Thomas (RB)

Cadillac Williams (RB)

Michael Turner (RB)

Kellen Winslow (TE)

Jeremy Trueblood (OT)

Keydrick Vincent (OG)

Todd McClure (C)

Jonathan Vilma (MLB)

Barrett Ruud (MLB)

Quincy Black (OLB)

Thomas Davis (OLB)

Ronde Barber (CB)

Tracy Porter (CB)

Dunta Robinson (CB)

Erik Coleman (SS)

Tanard Jackson (FS)

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