Last week we brought you the news that Chicago Bears running back Jordan Howard made the Pro Football Focus Top 101 NFL Players list. The rookie checked in at number 75 and he was the 5th running back on their list. He was also the only Bear to make the cut, which was probably deserving since they did finish with only three wins.
Even though PFF grades each player on a 0-100 scale, their Top 101 didn’t simply run things down according to the numerical grades they gave out. Instead, they subjectively tried to take an “all positions are created equal” stance, as to not have a number of quarterbacks dominate the top.
Howard may have been the only Chicago player on their list, but his 81.0 grade wasn’t the highest handed out to a Bear, that honor goes to the number one inside linebacker in the game today (according to PFF), Jerrell Freeman. PFF gave Freeman a position leading 93.8 grade. His best grade came in the coverage category, where he received a 94.9, with his worst coming in the pass rush category, with a 60.6. Since Freeman wasn’t asked to rush the passer very often, only 34 times according to PFF,. that’s not a very big deal.
Freeman wasn’t the only Bears defender to make the top 15 at his position, defensive end Akiem Hicks checked in at 15th among the interior defensive linemen. His 83.1 was just 2.1 away from a top 10 grade.
But back to the offense and Howard, he was their 7th graded tailback, with his highest grade coming in the pass block category (80.7) and his lowest as a pass catcher (49.0).
There were three other Bears that made the top 15 at their respective positions on offense. Center Cody Whitehair was Chicago’s highest graded offensive player at 87.2 and he was 6th among centers.
Josh Sitton’s 86.2 ranked him 10th among offensive guards and tight end Zach Miller checked in as their 8th graded tight end with an 81.7.
To check out the PFF top 15 at every position you can click this link to imgur.
Do any of these Bears’ rankings surprise you?