The Worst Tackler on Every NFL Team

Brian Wright@@BrianWright86Correspondent IIDecember 7, 2011

The Worst Tackler on Every NFL Team

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    An old axiom in football is to "see what you hit and hit what you see."

    Unfortunately, some players in the NFL have difficulty with their vision. Tackling is one of the absolute basic fundamentals of the game. Yet some can't seem to get a grip on it, in more ways than one.

    All teams in the league have a player taking down an opposing ball carrier. Here is the worst from each club.

    Note: information for this slideshow was courtesy of Football Outsiders, Pro Football Reference and Pro Football Focus

Arizona Cardinals: Kerry Rhodes

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    If this article were done at this point in 2010, the answer would be Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie.

    But with DRC shipped off to Philly in the offseason, it's Rhodes who takes the cake. Last year, he had a 26 percent run stop rate.

Atlanta Falcons: William Moore

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    Opponents broke free of 11 of Moore's tackle attempts over the course of the 2010 season.

    That gives the University of Missouri product 15.3 percent of his tries to bring down the ball carrier unsuccessful.

Baltimore Ravens: Ed Reed

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    A poor tackler doesn't always mean a poor player.

    Such is the case with Ed Reed, a future Hall of Fame safety on one of the most consistent defenses over the past decade.

    Reed can anticipate a quarterback's pass better than anyone in the league. However, tackling is not his strong suit. Between 2008 and 2010, there were 27 missed tackles to his name.

Buffalo Bills: Dwan Edwards

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    Edwards is the lone defensive lineman to make this rundown.

    Over the course of the 2010 campaign, Edwards had a run stop rate of 65 percent. While that is superb for a defensive back, it's less than mediocre for a player at the line of scrimmage. His rate was sixth among DL's.

Carolina Panthers: Sherrod Martin

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    In his third year out of Troy, the Panthers defensive back hasn't been all that adept at bringing down a ball carrier.

    Over the course of his initial two seasons, Martin missed 20 tackles with 5.53 attempts per whiff.

Chicago Bears: Lance Briggs

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    Briggs is one of the unquestioned leaders of a solid Bears defense.

    His 16 missed tackles per season should in no way be held against him, as he does plenty more good than bad for Chicago.

Cincinnati Bengals: Reggie Nelson

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    A solid performance last year still couldn't keep him off.

    Nelson had the reputation of being an awful tackler when he donned the colors of the Jacksonville Jaguars. However, in 2010 with Cincinnati, he turned it around with zero broken tackles and 37 solo tackles.

    But that one season of solid play isn't going to wash away his reputation completely.

Cleveland Browns: Chris Gocong

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    Gocong isn't the main reason why the Browns have the second-worst defense in terms of stopping the run...but he certainly is a contributing factor.

    The former Eagle and current Cleveland linebacker missed out on a chance to bring down a ball carrier 13.3 percent of the time.

Dallas Cowboys: Mike Jenkins

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    The Cowboys couldn't get a handle on Larod Stephens-Howling when he took a screen pass all the way for a touchdown, one that helped the Arizona Cardinals prevail in overtime last week.

    Jenkins wasn't in the picture on that play, but he's been on the wrong end of many Dallas defensive efforts.

Denver Broncos: D.J. Williams

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    When you have many opportunities to make a play, there are going to be some times in which you swing-and-miss.

    Such is the case for the Broncos' linebacker. Williams recorded 119 tackles in 2010, but his 52 percent run stop rate was among the worst in the league.

Detroit Lions: DeAndre Levy

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    From 2008 through 2010, no linebacker had a lower attempts per miss rate than this man.

    Levy had 123 tackles and 15 assists during that three-year span. It's the 28 misses that count on this list.

Green Bay Packers: Nick Collins

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    Nobody is perfect.

    That's the case even on a team that may finish this regular season with an unblemished record.

    Nick Collins' record isn't all stellar. Despite putting up quality numbers in some areas (13 INTs since 2008, three Pro Bowls), he suffers from a run stop percentage of 26.

Houston Texans: Glover Quin

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    The 75 tackles that Quin produced in 2010 were overshadowed by the fact that 13.1 percent of his tries to reel in a ball carrier turned out to be futile.

    The king of this dubious category was Bernard Pollard before he went to Baltimore.

Indianapolis Colts: Antoine Bethea

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    Bethea improved his fundamentals, reducing his broken tackle amount from eight in 2009 to just three the next season.

    Despite that, it wasn't quite enough to keep the two-time Pro Bowler off.

Jacksonville Jaguars: Drew Coleman

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    Six sacks in the past three-plus seasons is impressive for a player at his position.

    However, 16 missed tackles and a rate of 5.94 attempts per whiff from '08 to '10 is not so superb.

Kansas City Chiefs: Brandon Flowers

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    The cornerback from Virginia Tech was responsible for seven broken tackles in 2009, which was followed by a 38 percent stop rate against the run in 2010.

    The latter statistic has decreased with each passing season, although he remains a viable part of the K.C. secondary with his ability to cover the pass.

Miami Dolphins: Vontae Davis

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    With an average of 6.21 tackle attempts per miss from 2008-10, Davis qualifies justly. 

    He would have wished that Benny Sapp was still on the squad. That's because Sapp's poor showing against Wes Welker on a Monday night in Week 1 was great reason to include him in this rundown.

Minnesota Vikings: Jamarca Sanford

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    With two interceptions to his credit in 2011, the third-year player out of Ole Miss is on pace to have his best year as a pro.

    However, when you consider that he's had just 30 tackles in 11 games played (and started), he's also had some duds, too.

New England Patriots: Josh Barrett

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    In 2010, the Patriots had the least amount of broken tackles against them. Therefore, finding a player that was egregiously bad at wrapping up an opponent was a difficult task.

    Josh Barrett seems to be the most qualified for this list. In five games as a member of the Pats, he's posted 12 tackles in five contests. During his two seasons in Denver, Barrett recorded 13 tackles in 20 games.

New Orleans Saints: Malcolm Jenkins

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    Malcolm Jenkins has been a consistent member of the Saints secondary for his three pro seasons.

    In fact, he led the NFL in interception-return TDs with five in 2010. It's his ability to stop players who are running with the football that is his weak spot.

    Jenkins' broken tackle percentage last season was 15.2, which rated him 10th among defensive backs.

New York Giants: Deon Grant

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    While the Saints' Jenkins rates at the edge of the top 10 in the dubious list of struggling tacklers in the secondary, Grant is two spots better (or worse).

    His percentage was 16.1, ranking eighth.

New York Jets: Donald Strickland

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    Rex Ryan's club boasts a solid defense. And while that is mostly true, it doesn't mean that all his players are elite in all phases of the game.

    Antonio Cromartie struggles when it comes to making successful tackles. As does Strickland. Since 2008, he has just 69 tackles and 16 misses.

    No wonder he's bounced around to five different teams over the course of his nine-year career.

Oakland Raiders: Stanford Routt

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    A second-round pick by Oakland, Routt has donned the silver and black for the entirety of his pro career.

    The cornerback's numbers have never been all too stellar. He has just nine interceptions and, more importantly, has never eclipsed the 50-tackle mark in a season.

Philadelphia Eagles: Nnamdi Asomugha

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    The team with the most ineptitude at tackling plays in Philly.

    Asante Samuel, Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Brian Rolle all are candidates to be the Eagles' representative.

    However, let's give it to the team's big free-agent signing this August.

    Asomugha hasn't been a total disappointment in midnight green. In fact, his lack of tackling was seen even when he was starring in Oakland.

Pittsburgh Steelers: William Gay

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    Pittsburgh's defense isn't known for its missed tackles. Rather, it has been known recently for fine-inducing tackles.

    Gay isn't as terrible as some of the others mentioned, but he has compiled just 34 tackles in the 12 games played this season (10 starts)

San Diego Chargers: Quentin Jammer

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    When Jammer came out of the University of Texas, he was a highly-touted prospect. The Chargers bought in, making the cornerback the No. 5 overall pick in the 2002 NFL Draft.

    Since then, he has produced solid (but unspectacular) numbers. His amount of tackles has decreased after his 73 in 2008.

San Francisco 49ers: Shawntae Spencer

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    For three seasons, the Niners boasted one of the best tacklers in the game in Takeo Spikes.

    Shawntae Spencer apparently didn't learn much from him. During the time Spikes was in San Francisco, Spencer had 6.21 attempts per miss.

Seattle Seahawks: David Hawthorne

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    Hawthorne's tackling amounts have decreased. Unfortunately, his misses are still more than most at his position.

    The 6-foot, 230-pound linebacker is tied with many others with 11 broken tackles.

St. Louis Rams: Ben Leber

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    This is Leber's first season with St. Louis. He brought his leadership and consistent statistics with him from his days in Minnesota.

    He also brought about a pension for his misses. More specifically, 8.43 attempts per miss.

Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Tanard Jackson

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    The Bucs are the kings of the muffed tackles.

    In one three-game stretch, they missed 42. Through Week 11 in the 2011 campaign, Tampa has 15.54 percent of attempted tackles missed. That number is above and beyond anyone else in the league.

    With dishonorable mention going to Ronde Barber and Quincy Black, the champion of this bunch is Jackson, who has a whopping 44 percent of tackle attempts come up empty.

Tennessee Titans: Michael Griffin

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    According to Football Outsiders, no player in the NFL had more tackles broken in 2010 than Michael Griffin. His final total: 17. A rate of 16.2 percent. 

    On the bright side, his 88 tackles were a career high.

Washington Redskins: Rocky McIntosh

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    The former University of Miami linebacker had 77 tackles recorded in 2010. He could have added 11 more.

    Unfortunately, they're the reason he's the Redskins' representative on this list. His 12.4 percent missed tackle rate was in the top 10 among LBs.