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Vikings Player Power Rankings

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This is a concept that started with our outstanding Cleveland Browns blog, Dawgs by Nature, and something that I'm ripping off borrowing for this site.  I decided to wait until the mid-point of the season to break them out, though.

This should spur a little debate, if nothing else.  Basically, it's a ranking of the play of everyone on the roster this season.  Here's what I've got.

Player Power Rankings
Rank Player Comment
1 Adrian Peterson, RB Well, so far this season, he's. . .you know, I really don't think I need to justify this one.
2 E.J. Henderson, LB My vote for Vikings' defensive MVP.  An absolute beast against the run, and his coverage skills have gotten better.
3 Kevin Williams, DT Best in the league at his position, yet only the third best player in Minnesota.  Goes to show that, yes, this team has talent after all.
4 Steve Hutchinson, G Seems to have finally gotten the hang of the "zone blocking" thing, and opposing defensive linemen are paying the price.
5 Pat Williams, DT Let he who hath understanding reckon the number of the beast, for it is a human number.  Its number. . .is 94.
6 Matt Birk, C Savvy veteran is as good at making line calls as any center in the league, and it shows.  And he went to Harvard.
7 Chris Kluwe, P I'm almost loathe to put a punter this high, but Kluwe has been pretty outstanding this season.  The Vikings need to play field position football, and Kluwe really helps them to do that.
8 Darren Sharper, S It still tickles me that the greatest safety in Green Bay history is still starting. . .and playing at a pretty high level. . .for the Beloved Purple.  He may have lost a step, but 95% of the time you really can't tell.
9 Antoine Winfield, CB His coverage skills may have taken a bit of a hit, but there's no better run support corner in the league than 'Toine.  I personally wouldn't be surprised to see him moved to safety in the very near future.
10 Bryant McKinnie, OT Yeah, he's still susceptible to the speed rush.  But his run blocking skills have really improved. . .and if you don't believe me, I'm sure Adrian Peterson will vouch for him.
11 Ben Leber, LB Leber's nickname should be "XM Radio," because it seems like he's everywhere all the time.
12 Kenechi Udeze, DE Yeah, we gave BKU a hard time after going 0-for-2006 in the sack department.  Don't look now, but he currently leads the Vikings in sacks (4.0) and is still solid against the run.
13 Chester Taylor, RB We're quick to forget that in 2006, this offense was the Chester Taylor Show.  But he's taken the Adrian Peterson phenomenon in stride. . .oh, and is still averaging 4.6 yards a carry when called upon.
14 Brian Robison, DE The rookie from Texas has been a part of an improved Vikings' pass rush, and currently ranks second on the Vikings AND among NFL rookies in sacks (3.5)
15 Ray Edwards, DE I really could have put Robison and Edwards in either order.  But the second-year man from Purdue has been a big part of the pass rush, too.
16 Visanthe Shiancoe, TE Still overpaid, but is proving to be a reliable target when called upon.  Now, if only Tarvaris Jackson knew he was alive.
17 Sidney Rice, WR For a guy that should be playing in his junior (not senior, junior) season at South Carolina, he's asserted himself pretty well.
18 Dwight Smith, S Has gotten toasted plenty of times this year (see the last 3 minutes of the Chicago game), but has made some fine plays, too.
19 Chad Greenway, LB Shows good energy and a nose for the ball, but has gotten beaten in coverage plenty of times.
20 Tony Richardson, FB Has been effective when called upon.  In this offense, that's pretty good.
21 Cedric Griffin, CB Speaking of getting beaten in coverage, Griffin hasn't taken quite the step forward that I had hoped he would this year.
22 Ryan Longwell, K Still one of the most accurate kickers in the league, and still has the range, too.  Check out the last play of the Chicago game for proof.
23 Jim Kleinsasser, TE His pass-catching skills have basically evaporated, and he isn't quite the run blocker he once was, but he's still very good.
24 Anthony Herrera, G The offensive line play improved quite a bit once he was given the starting spot at RG.
25 Brooks Bollinger, QB Yes, I've finally hit a QB.  Bollinger looked terrible in the pre-season, but has looked like Minnesota's best QB to this point. . .which, I'll admit, is a lot like being the best shortstop in Norway.
26 Heath Farwell, LB Don't see him much, other than on special teams, but he seems to be in on every special teams play.
27 Bobby Wade, WR Never met a punt that he couldn't fair catch.
28 Tank Williams, S Filled in ably for Dwight Smith in the games he was out.  Still a great hitter from the S spot, too.
29 Troy Williamson, WR I'm still holding out hope for this kid.  All that speed, and it looks like his hands HAVE improved, but he may never be more than a #3 WR.  Damn shame, too, because nobody works harder than Troy Williamson.
30 Dontarrious Thomas, LB See him on special teams every once in a while, but honestly, there are times that I forget he's even on the roster.
31 Spencer Johnson, DT Seems like he's been on this team for about 10 years, even though it's only his 4th NFL season.  A capable backup for the law firm of Williams & Williams.
32 Marcus McCauley, CB Like Griffin, has gotten beaten a few times (most notably in the Green Bay game), but has shown a lot of potential.  He's a keeper.
33 Charles Gordon, CB Hasn't gotten much playing time this year, but hasn't been terrible when he has.  Which is good.
34 Vinny Ciurciu, LB Almost strictly a special teamer like Farwell, but much less visible.  Which, considering what we paid him this off-season, is a shame.
35 Mewelde Moore, RB Are we not men?  We are MeMo!  He'd be better if he could actually, you know, get on the field.
36 Tarvaris Jackson, QB Yep, way down here for T-Jack.  I don't know what it says about the kid that, had Ryan Longwell's field goal attempt in Detroit been 6" to the right, Jackson would be 4-1 as a starter this year.  Really unsure about his future at this point.
37 Naufahu Tahi, FB Given the nod over Jeff Dugan because his name is more fun to say.
38 Jeff Dugan, FB See above.
39 Aundrae Allison, WR Outside of the major gaffe in Kansas City, has proven to be a pretty good returner.  I do wish he could get more snaps at WR, though.
40 Robert Ferguson, WR Wasn't a big fan of the signing when it was made. . .and Fergy hasn't done much to change my mind.
41 Cullen Loeffler, LS Hey, I don't remember any bad snaps this year, do you?  Let's show the guy some love.
42 Kelly Holcomb, QB He's this far down because. . .well, he's not THAT good, and because I really don't think he has a place in Minnesota after this year.
43 Ryan Cook, OT Always good for a couple of dumb penalties every game.  Still a waste of a second-round pick, in my opinion.
44 Mike Doss, S Wasn't he supposed to help our depth?  He really hasn't done a hell of a lot this year.
45 Fred Evans, DT DON'T TAZE HIM, BRO!!  (Don't groan, you knew it was coming.)
46 Artis Hicks, G Single-handedly killing drives in the red zone since 2006.
47 Jayme Mitchell, DE Doesn't see the field much.  Can't say anything about him, really.
Non-Ranked Players
Rank Player Comment
NA Marcus Johnson, G If you can't even beat out Ryan Cook, you're not worthy of a comment.
NA Garrett Mills, TE Yeah, we stole him from New England.  Well, "stole" might be the wrong word.  A "steal" might actually "play."
NA Erasmus James, DE Can we get this guy to stay healthy for five minutes, please?
NA Darrion Scott, DE Lost year for Scott, and at the worst possible time. . .he's a free agent at the end of the year.
NA Martin Nance, WR Would love to see him get a shot, but I don't know if he'll ever make it off the practice squad with all the talent we have at WR (end sarcasm here).
NA Joel Filani, WR Don't know much about him.
NA Chase Johnson, OT Hasn't seen the field.
NA Brian Daniels, G Hasn't seen the field.
NA Koy Detmer, QB Has been on the roster for approximately five minutes. Really, nothing to see here.
NA Ronyell Whitaker, CB Cut to make room for Detmer. . .should have been sponsored by Quizno's. . .mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm, TOASTY!

What say you, ladies and gentlemen?

[editor's note, by Gonzo]

CRAP, I forgot Darren Sharper. I'll edit him in when I get home from work tonight. He'll be in the Top 10 someplace. I just can't believe I left him off.

Update [2007-11-7 18:49:20 by Gonzo]:

Crisis averted. . .Sharper is up there now. Again, I apologize to #42.