As the decade comes to a close and we welcome in a glorious 2010 and say goodbye to 2009, we've got to come to grips to who truly is the elite of the decade. For the rest of the week we will be reviewing the "Best Of" the decade with different subjects and topics for you the reader to debate. With that being said, you know we had to do a review of America's Pastime...football that is. You can feel free to hear me out, or you can begin cussing me out with the first person I selected as my quarterback. Regardless, read up and weigh in with your thoughts. Here we go...
QB - Tom Brady, New England Patriots: At first thought it seems that this should be more of a debate, as you have the soon to be 4-time MVP Peyton Manning who's reigned supreme at the QB position, and you have Big Ben with 2 Super Bowl titles as well. However, after really thinking about it...there is no debate, there's only one QB with 4 Super Bowl appearances, 3 Super Bowl titles, and most single-season touchdowns in NFL history. Yeah, I want that QB to by my general for team of the decade, and its not even close.
RB - LaDainian Tomlinson, San Diego Chargers: Probably the easiest selection of the team, 5-time pro-bowler, 4-time 1st team all-pro selection. Since the man started his career in 2001, he is now currently 8th on the all-time rushing list, and this is after just 9 seasons. Its truly possible that he could get that ever elusive title, he might be one of the 5 best backs in football. As for the decade? Crown's all his.
RB - Clinton Portis, Washington Redskins (Broncos): Its been a tale of two careers for Portis as we watched him blossom before our very eyes as the lead back for Mike Shanahan's zone read offense in Denver. Then, in one of the most monumental trades I've ever seen in football history, Portis got traded to Washington for perennial all-pro defensive back Champ Bailey. In 8 seasons, Portis has run for more than 1500 yards from seasons in 6 of his 8 years, and has been as steady as any back in football.
WR - Randy Moss, Minnesota Vikings (Raiders, Patriots): (please read below)
WR - Terrell Owens, San Francisco 49ers (Eagles, Cowboys, Bills): Moss and Owens, Owens and Moss...these two wide receivers dominated the game in totally different capacities, and both were total head cases in they own way. However, lets make one thing perfectly clear...no one was checking Moss one-on-one going deep, and no one as checking T.O. going over the middle. In a perfect world, I'd probably take Marvin Harrison and Torry Holt over both of them, but I know better. I need playmakers, and these two are the best that ever did it (in the decade) lol.
TE - Tony Gonzalez, Kansas City Chiefs (Falcons): He gets this title for the work he did at the Chiefs, and he gets the nod over Antonio Gates for the consistency of his work for the duration of his career. Besides, I gotta have some hispanic representation on the squad.
T - Walter Jones, Seattle Seahawks
G - Steve Hutchinson, Seattle Seahawks (Vikings)
C - Kevin Mawae, New York Jets (Titans)
G - Alan Faneca, Pittsburgh Steelers (Jets)
T - Jonathan Ogden, Baltimore Ravens
Gotta have the hogmollies...
DE - Michael Strahan, New York Giants: The new single-season sack leader with 22.5 sacks (even though Lorenzo laid down to give it to him) and helped lead the Giants to the most improbable Super Bowl victory of all-time. He was the epitome of what you wanted a defensive end to be, and that gap...oh that gap lol.
DT - La'Roi Glover, New Orleans Saints (Cowboys, Rams): Probably one of the toughest selections on the team, but from 2000-06 Glover was always a top-3 DT in the league. Plus, he set a record amount of sacks by a tackle with 17 in one season. Sad to leave off Sapp, Sam Adams, Richard Seymour, and Albert Haynesworth.
DE - Jason Taylor, Miami Dolphins (Redskins): Currently 11th on the all-time sacks list with 127.5, Taylor is a 6-time pro-bowler and 3-time 1st team all-pro. Who was guarding a 6'6" 255-pound defensive end who ran a 4.6? Nobody. Thus the reason of him being on the team.
LB - Zach Thomas, Miami Dolphins (Cowboys): Probably the most under appreciated MLB in football, Zach was a beast for many years in Miami.
LB - Ray Lewis, Baltimore Ravens: Maybe the best MLB in the history of football, definitely the most feared linebacker of the decade by far. To overcome what he has is ree-damn-diculous.
LB - Brian Urlacher, Chicago Bears: On a list as good as this one, to say someone is the best athlete of the bunch is saying a ton. Urlacher when healthy proved that he could literally make any play on the field you wanted him to.
LB - Derrick Brooks, Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Ol' #55 got the job anyway you needed it to be done. Phenomenal coverage linebacker, with a mean streak in getting to the ball carrier. Carried Tampa to a Super Bowl in 2003.
CB - Charles Woodson, Green Bay Packers (Raiders): Supremely tough decision here, as Ty Law, Troy Vincent, and Nnamdi Asomugha all had strong resumes...in the end, Woodson gets the nod more for his resurgence as an elite DB when some folks thought he was done.
CB - Champ Bailey, Denver Broncos (Redskins): The best defensive back in football over the decade, period.
FS - Ed Reed, Baltimore Ravens: Heart says Brian Dawkins...but I know Reed is better.
SS - Troy Polamalu, Pittsburgh Steelers: Heart says John Lynch...but I know that Polamalu is better.
KR/PR - Joshua Cribbs, Cleveland Browns: Probably one of the hardest choices to make on this team. I have to go with Cribbs over Dante Hall and Devin Hester due to the continued success with Cribbs, versus the desire to move the returner to wide receiver permanently. Cribbs now has the career record for most return TDs ever, and he gets the choice here.
K - Adam Vinatieri, New England Patriots (Colts): The most clutch kicker in NFL history. Easy choice.
P - Shane Lechler, Oakland Raiders: Because someone's gotta do it.
There were definitely some omissions...and definitely some judgement calls that had to be made, but what's your take? Who would you take off or add on? Let us know your thoughts on the team of the decade!