A horrible recent tradition in the NFL off-season is the NFL’s yearly drawn-out release of its Top 100 Players list. I can’t necessarily blame the league for doing it, or even milking the list for all it’s worth. Though I will say the fact that NFL Network has a reaction show for its list reveals is probably overdoing it at least a little.
Nevertheless, the list is an effective way to keep people talking about football at a time when absolutely nothing is going on. If anything, the problem is it’s too effective. People taking it seriously turns it into a bigger headache than a pointless list has any right to be. Fans get pissed about rankings. Media members take pains to be know-it-all assholes who pronounce who should be where. Even players get worked up about it.
While we admire the content-producing potential, we would like to have something more amusing replace it. A worst-ever players list would be the obvious counter, but that would just as likely be a magnet for tedious argument. Not to mention that, if we’re being honest with ourselves, the worst players in NFL history are ones who never made a roster or even a practice squad. So it’s best to meet somewhere in the middle, to find players who had nice long careers while being perfectly pedestrian and unexceptional. Kyle Orton might be the near ideal embodiment of that in the current game.
The Gay Mafia has already come up with more of a few of our own. Of course, we have our limitations in this endeavor. We only possess accurate recall of the last 30 years of the NFL. That’s the thing about the truly average: unless you saw them play, you more than likely were never made aware of their existence. Even the extremely awful get to live on through infamy and ridicule. The average just kind of fade into the background.
Now we will do our best to bring them back. To claim that this is a scientific inquiry is to drop turds in our punchbowl. We’re mostly in this to come up with a bunch of obscure names of forgettable players from yesterday and today. It’s already been a joy to dredge up names like Bernie Parmalee, James Jett and O.J. Santiago.
If you would like to aide us in our quest, send us suggestions by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll run our full list at some point next week.