Inside the numbers of the ‘Top 100 Players of 2022’

It began with Kyle and it concluded with Tom.

The NFL Network’s Top 100 Players of 2022 — voted on by the players themselves — has been unveiled, starting with No. 100 Kyle Juszczyk and ending with No. 1 Tom Brady, the latest in an ever-growing list of accolades for the G.O.A.T. In between, there were superstars who earned rightful acclaim and overlooked talents left on the outside looking in.

Here’s a look inside the numbers of the Top 100:

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0 — Amount of Jaguars, Jets, Lions and Texans in the Top 100. They are the four teams without players on the list (whether they were on the team last season or are on the roster for 2022). With zero players from Jacksonville or Houston, the AFC South had a division-low eight players recognized.

2 — The ranking of Rams defensive lineman Aaron Donald, who in 2019 became one of just two defensive players (along with J.J. Watt in 2015) to garner the No. 1 spot.

3 — Aaron Rodgers’ ranking in each of the last two years after winning AP NFL Most Valuable Player. Rodgers was No. 2 in the list in 2015 after winning the 2014 MVP. Having won four MVP awards, Rodgers has only one Top 100 No. 1 ranking to his credit in 2012, which came after winning the 2011 MVP.

4 — Tom Brady has now been voted No. 1 in the Top 100 four times. No other player has ever won the accolade more than once. Brady has been voted No. 1 in 2011, 2017, 2018 and 2022.

6 — Amount of rookies in the Top 100: Falcons TE Kyle Pitts (No. 92), Patriots QB Mac Jones (86), Chargers OT Rashawn Slater (79), Dolphins WR Jaylen Waddle (63), Bengals WR Ja’Marr Chase (24) and Cowboys LB Micah Parsons (16).

7 — There are seven Rams (including free-agent Odell Beckham Jr., new addition Bobby Wagner and free-agent departure Von Miller) on the list, the most in the NFC.

8 — That the team with the most selections is Los Angeles, isn’t surprising. That it’s the Chargers is. The Bolts have seven players on the list who were with them in 2021 and one addition in cornerback J.C. Jackson.

9 — Nine NFC North players, including Davante Adams — who was traded from the Packers to the Raiders during the offseason — are on the list, which is the least for any NFC division.

10 — The top spot for a tight end, occupied by Chiefs TE Travis Kelce. It’s the second year in a row Kelce is the top-ranked player at his position and in which he landed in the top 10, after his No. 5 placement last year. Kelce has been the top-ranked TE in three of the last four years, a run split up only by George Kittle’s No. 7 ranking in 2020.

12 — This is the 12th installment of the Top 100. It began in 2011 with Tom Brady taking the top spot and continues over a decade later with Brady still on top.

14 — Niners offensive lineman Trent Williams garnered the highest spot ever bestowed on an offensive lineman at No. 14.

16 — Dallas linebacker Micah Parsons, the AP NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year, set a new standard for the highest ranking for a rookie defensive player, squeaking past the previous best of Nick Bosa, who was No. 17 in 2020.

20 — J.C. Jackson is the highest-ranked undrafted defensive player in the history of the list and one of five UDFAs on this year’s list. He’s joined by new Chargers teammate Austin Ekeler (No. 46), fellow cornerback Kenny Moore II (82), Buccaneers pass rusher Shaq Barrett (87) and Ravens kicker Justin Tucker (94).

21 — The age of Falcons tight end Kyle Pitts, the youngest player ranked in this year’s Top 100.

30 — The number of players ranked on the list for the first time in their careers (including rookies). Those 30 players are bookended by running backs: Bears back David Montgomery at No. 98 and Colts dynamo Jonathan Taylor at No. 5.

39 — Combined amount of seasons played for Tom Brady (22) and Aaron Rodgers (17), who are the only two players to have been ranked in each edition of the Top 100.

44 — Robert Quinn was ranked No. 44 in 2015. Six years later, he’s ranked No. 48 after a big season with the Chicago Bears. The six-season absence was the biggest time gap between being ranked of anyone on the 2022 list.

45 — The age of Tom Brady, who set the mark for the oldest player to be voted No. 1. Brady broke the previous standard set by … Tom Brady, who was 40 at the time of his 2018 honor.

48 — Tristan Wirfs moved up 48 spots from 2021 (No. 89) to 2022 (No. 41), which was the biggest jump up for any player ranked both last year and this year.

49 — Russell Wilson fell 49 spots from 2021 (No. 12) to 2022 (No. 61), which was the biggest drop for any player ranked both last year and this year.

89 — In 2020, Rams receiver Cooper Kupp checked in at No. 89. It was the only time in his career he was on the Top 100 until this year. He’s the top receiver at No. 4 following his triple crown campaign.

90 — Odell Beckham Jr., ranked 90th, is the only current free agent to find a spot on the list. He’s best remaining available player on Gregg Rosenthal’s Top 101 free agents list.

94 — On the strength of an NFL-record 66-yard field goal this past season, Justin Tucker has finally garnered enough respect from his NFL brethren to find a spot on the list for the first time in his sensational career. Tucker’s debut also marks the first time a kicker has been ranked since Adam Vinatieri in 2015 at No. 98.

99 — Kirk Cousins’ ranking, which is the last of 14 QBs ranked (or the first, depending on where you started reading).

100 — The ranking of fullback Kyle Juszczyk. The best fullback in the game is the only fullback to land on the list.

For the complete list of the Top 100 of 2022, click here.

Follow Grant Gordon on Twitter.

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