Deshaun Watson deserves higher ranking in NFL Top 100 Players of 2020
Houston Texans star Deshaun Watson was ranked the seventh-best NFL quarterback on the annual player-voted list via NFL.com.
In the immortal words of comedian Rodney Dangerfield, Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson just “don’t get no respect.”
Mere weeks after it was announced that Watson was only the eighth-highest ranked quarterback by Madden rating in the popular video game franchise, Watson was ranked the seventh-best quarterback in the league according to the annual player-voted rankings list: the Top 100 NFL Players of 2020.
In the Madden ratings, Watson was behind (from No. 1 through No. 7) Patrick Mahomes, Russell Wilson, Lamar Jackson, Drew Brees, Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, and Matt Ryan.
In the Top 100 list, Watson’s No. 20 overall ranking fell behind No. 1 Jackson, No. 2 Wilson, No. 4 Mahomes, No. 12 Brees, No. 14 Brady, and No. 16 Rodgers.
It’s one thing for Watson to be criminally underrated by a bunch of outside engineers and statisticians working in video game development.
It’s quite another for him to once again be underrated by a jury of his peers within the NFL itself.
Most of the outrage around media circles this week has been around Mahomes’ No. 4 ranking, which falls behind Wilson (No. 2) and Jackson (No. 1).
That’s all fine and good, but where’s the outrage over Watson’s ranking? He’s behind the likes of Brees, Brady, and Rodgers — three living legends, no doubt — but all players who had subpar 2019 seasons compared to Watson.
Consider that in last year’s playoffs, only Mahomes and Rodgers advanced further than Watson. Wilson and Jackson both also lost in the Division round along with Watson, and Brees and Brady lost in the Wild Card round the week previous.
Deshaun Watson statistically was better than most of these other QBs too
Even if you choose to discount the on-field results in the postseason and actual games won, consider the individual stats then.
Watson’s 67.3% completion rate was sixth-best in the league. Among quarterbacks who played in at least 15 games of the regular season last year, only Jimmy Garoppolo, Kirk Cousins, and Derek Carr had a better completion rate — and none of them were ranked higher than Watson obviously in this Top 100 Players list.
Among players ranked higher than Watson on this list, only Wilson, Brady, Mahomes, and Rodgers threw for more passing yards. Among players ranked higher than Watson on this list, only Jackson, Wilson, Brees, and Rodgers threw for more passing touchdowns. Among players ranked higher than Watson on this list, only Brees, Jackson, Wilson, and Mahomes finished with a higher overall quarterback rating.
In fact, the only relevant individual quarterback statistic in which Watson probably deserves to be ranked behind these six other signal-callers is in interceptions, where he finished in seventh-place among them.
Any way you slice it, Deshaun Watson deserves better than being ranked No. 20 overall — and No. 7 among quarterbacks — in the Top 100 NFL Players of 2020 list. At very worst, he should have finished fifth or sixth — but certainly not seventh.