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Positional Battle by Division


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NFC South

Best Quarterback

Drew Brees – Coach Sean Payton is back and Brees is ready to rock not only the division but the league, too.

Matt Ryan – Has some serious weapons and a balanced attack. Super Bowl or bust for the Atlanta Falcons.

Josh Freeman – His completion percentage was only 0.4 better than Mark Sanchez. Enough said.

Cam Newton – A dual threat by ground and air but still, something’s missing. Oh yeah, leadership skills.

Best Running Back

Doug Martin – How can you not be No. 1 when your nickname is Muscle Hamster?

Steven Jackson – Best possible fit for this seasoned warrior, will give Martin a run for his money.

Darren Sproles – Points-per-reception monster, makes his presence known with the best hands out of the backfield.

DeAngelo Williams/Jonathan Stewart – Dual-headed threat … both overpaid and underused.

Best Tight End

Jimmy Graham – Arguably the best pass catching tight end in the game today.

Tony Gonzalez – OK, guys … one more year. Looks to make the most of it by dominating in the red zone.

Greg Olsen – Cam Newtown and Mike Tolbert are stealing those precious tight end touchdowns of his.

Luke Stocker – … Who?

Best WR1

Julio Jones – Choosing between Jones and Roddy White … Matt Ryan has 99 problems and this is not one.

Vincent Jackson – 19.2 average yards per catch last year. Highest in the NFL by two yards. Jackson has skills.

Marques Colston – A threat to go off any week as long as Drew Brees is tossing it up.

Steve Smith – Expect the yardage but not the touchdowns.

Best WR2

Roddy White – Choosing between White and Julio Jones … Matt Ryan has 99 problems and this is not one.

Mike Williams – A great touchdown threat and complement to Vincent Jackson.

Lance Moore – Too many weapons on offense to be a completely reliable WR2.

Brandon LaFell – Has potential … but potential doesn’t win you games.

NFC West

Best Quarterback

Russell Wilson – Sorry Matt Flynn, this is Wilson’s team. Also helped with the addition of Percy Harvin.

Colin Kaepernick – Sorry Alex Smith this is Kaepernick’s team. Also helped with the addition of Anquan Boldin.

Carson Palmer – Can still sling it and has an All-Pro wide receiver to throw too. He should make Arizona noticeably better.

Sam Bradford – Jury’s out on Bradford. Rookie wideout Tavon Austin looks to be a premier weapon for him to shine with.

Best Running Back

Marshawn Lynch – Lynch’s inch a pinch’s days are over. “Beast Mode” is fully activated now. Elite.

Frank Gore – Warning: Rated R for Gore! He’s getting older but still right up there with some of the best.

Rashard Mendenhall – Coach and running back re-united. Improved offensive line and a possibility to succeed.

Daryl Richardson/Isaiah Pead – Too early to tell. Pead was supposed to be their guy but Richardson took the reigns.

Best Tight End

Vernon Davis – Buy low, phenomenal athlete, but he and Colin Kaepernick don’t appear to be on the same page.

Jared Cook – Lots of upside. Jeff Fisher loves him and wants to use him.

Rob Housler – Great hands and potential but how he will be used remains to be seen.

Zach Miller – Used as a blocker for Marshawn Lynch 98 percent of the time.

Best WR1

Percy Harvin – Run heavy team but Harvin is one of the best playmakers in the game. He’ll get his.

Larry Fitzgerald – Top-3 as far as skill set goes but quarterback woes have left him forgotten as elite.

Tavon Austin – A tremendous skill player, a favorite for rookie of the year.

Michael Crabtree – Torn Achilles’, expected to return in November. Tough break for this standout.

Best WR2

Michael Floyd – Vastly improved and ready to take advantage of Larry Fitzgerald’s double coverage.

Anquan Boldin – Proved he’s still got it in Baltimore, now the No. 1 in San Francisco with an injured Crabtree.

Chris Givens – Could be a strong WR2 this year. The Rams offense has some nice potential.

Sidney Rice – Second wide receiver on a run-heavy offense. No thanks.