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the best athlete on each NFL team ~ ~ ~


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NFL Nation looks at the best athlete in each NFL locker room.

~ ~ New York Jets: After posing the question in various corners of the Jets' locker room, the consensus was CB Antonio Cromartie. He is long at 6-foot-2, and even at 31, he's still fast enough to play man-to-man coverage and return kickoffs. He also has played a handful of snaps at wide receiver during his career. -- Rich Cimini

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>   http://espn.go.com/nfl/story/_/page/32for32x151216/the-best-athlete-nfl-team

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Absolutely correct.  As recently as last year he ran an (unofficial) 40 in 4.34 seconds, despite being on the wrong side of 30.  He can change directions quicker than any 6-2 corner should be able to, has a ridiculous vertical, and can even throw it further than many QB's.

The reasons he's never been elite are well documented.  Doesn't take criticism well (he once yelled "f*ck you!" at Mike Pettine after he calmly gave him simple advice), doesn't use his long arms in press coverage at all, instead choosing to give receivers tons of space.  Has mental lapses that lead to him getting burnt.  Doesn't particularly like to tackle people.  But still a ridiculous athlete.

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Absolutely correct.  As recently as last year he ran an (unofficial) 40 in 4.34 seconds, despite being on the wrong side of 30.  He can change directions quicker than any 6-2 corner should be able to, has a ridiculous vertical, and can even throw it further than many QB's.

The reasons he's never been elite are well documented.  Doesn't take criticism well (he once yelled "f*ck you!" at Mike Pettine after he calmly gave him simple advice), doesn't use his long arms in press coverage at all, instead choosing to give receivers tons of space.  Has mental lapses that lead to him getting burnt.  Doesn't particularly like to tackle people.  But still a ridiculous athlete.

I was thinking Marshall would get the call. But Cro is very athletic. Always has been. Remember when he came into the league and his rookie season snagged 11 pics?

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Absolutely correct.  As recently as last year he ran an (unofficial) 40 in 4.34 seconds, despite being on the wrong side of 30.  He can change directions quicker than any 6-2 corner should be able to, has a ridiculous vertical, and can even throw it further than many QB's.

The reasons he's never been elite are well documented.  Doesn't take criticism well (he once yelled "f*ck you!" at Mike Pettine after he calmly gave him simple advice), doesn't use his long arms in press coverage at all, instead choosing to give receivers tons of space.  Has mental lapses that lead to him getting burnt.  Doesn't particularly like to tackle people.  But still a ridiculous athlete.

They talked about him in in the Collision Low Crossovers book.

He is a freak athlete in a room full of super athletic men.

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I was thinking Marshall would get the call. But Cro is very athletic. Always has been. Remember when he came into the league and his rookie season snagged 11 pics?

Yep.  His raw athleticism will keep him in a job until he loses those physical gifts.  It's just a shame he never was able to translate that athleticism into being an elite corner.  Instead he was mostly a very good one.  Imagine if he had anything close to Revis' work ethic, preparation, and most importantly, willingness to learn and get better? 

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Yep.  His raw athleticism will keep him in a job until he loses those physical gifts.  It's just a shame he never was able to translate that athleticism into being an elite corner.  Instead he was mostly a very good one.  Imagine if he had anything close to Revis' work ethic, preparation, and most importantly, willingness to learn and get better? 

was actually thinking about the same thing. A corner with Cro's physical game and Revis's technique and mental game would be the most prolific corner ever.

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Sheldon may have turned into a ghost ever since he went Stroker Ace on the fuzz, but let's not forget the guy is 300 pounds and nearly chased down Jarius Wright from behind last year.

he's definitely Top 10. I can't say top 5 because I feel like I'm missing a few Jets who are exceptionally more athletic. L.Williams being one of them.

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was actually thinking about the same thing. A corner with Cro's physical game and Revis's technique and mental game would be the most prolific corner ever.

Revis was quoted as saying that once.  That as good as Cro is, with his athleticism he should be the best corner in the NFL.

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Revis was quoted as saying that once.  That as good as Cro is, with his athleticism he should be the best corner in the NFL.

Kind of a catch-22 situation, sadly.  Guys who are that gifted can rely purely on their talent their whole careers, and are still told how great they are even when they clearly aren't putting the work in that others are.  But when you get to the pros, that difference becomes magnified eventually. 

When you look at the best players of all-time, almost all of them had some kind of physical shortcoming they had to overcome.  Jerry Rice went to a small school and didn't have the prototypical size or speed you look for.  Ray Lewis was labeled as undersized.  Very rarely do superior athletic gifts align with an insane work ethic. 

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Kind of a catch-22 situation, sadly.  Guys who are that gifted can rely purely on their talent their whole careers, and are still told how great they are even when they clearly aren't putting the work in that others are.  But when you get to the pros, that difference becomes magnified eventually. 

When you look at the best players of all-time, almost all of them had some kind of physical shortcoming they had to overcome.  Jerry Rice went to a small school and didn't have the prototypical size or speed you look for.  Ray Lewis was labeled as undersized.  Very rarely do superior athletic gifts align with an insane work ethic. 

When it does, you get a JJ Watt, or a Deion Sanders (who I hated but every team mate said he worked his butt off).

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But it's not just technique that makes Revis great- he is also blessed with great physical skills -  his body seems thicker than any corner I've ever seen, and that probably makes him stronger than most corners and he seems to manhandle the wr he's guarding better than other cb's.

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Kind of a catch-22 situation, sadly.  Guys who are that gifted can rely purely on their talent their whole careers, and are still told how great they are even when they clearly aren't putting the work in that others are.  But when you get to the pros, that difference becomes magnified eventually. 

When you look at the best players of all-time, almost all of them had some kind of physical shortcoming they had to overcome.  Jerry Rice went to a small school and didn't have the prototypical size or speed you look for.  Ray Lewis was labeled as undersized.  Very rarely do superior athletic gifts align with an insane work ethic. 

I always think of Isiah Thomas.  Chuck Daly said he sometimes played better when he was hurt because he would spend more time concentrating on his shooting, playing the point and distributing than relying on his athletic gifts.

Edited by #27TheDominator
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But it's not just technique that makes Revis great- he is also blessed with great physical skills -  his body seems thicker than any corner I've ever seen, and that probably makes him stronger than most corners and he seems to manhandle the wr he's guarding better than other cb's.

Revis is exceptionally gifted.  He's like the prototype CB physically.  Add in his intelligence, work ethic, technique, and competiveness and you get someone who is on the short list of greatest cbs ever if not the greatest.

Cro is just that rare freak specimen that probably shouldn't exist.  I'm not expecting anyone to be as driven and smart as Revis but if Cro had a fraction of his maturity and professionalism he'd be a perennial pro-bowler.

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I'd go so far to say that Cro is so athletic, he might just put Deion Sanders to shame in terms of athleticism.  

Now, hear me out.  Sure, Deion played both sides of the ball, but he only played O when his team's O was on the field. 

Now, Cro, once or twice during each game, Cro actually plays both sides of the ball ON THE SAME PLAY.  He lines up as a CB, but then after the snap he gets this nasty separation from the receiver on the long ball as if he were himself an elite WR!!!  It's such a beautiful thing to watch - right up until the actual WR makes the long catch and my Jets-Turrets kicks in.  ****

Edited by chillybott
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Revis is exceptionally gifted.  He's like the prototype CB physically.  Add in his intelligence, work ethic, technique, and competiveness and you get someone who is on the short list of greatest cbs ever if not the greatest.

Cro is just that rare freak specimen that probably shouldn't exist.  I'm not expecting anyone to be as driven and smart as Revis but if Cro had a fraction of his maturity and professionalism he'd be a perennial pro-bowler.

He is a perennial pro-bowler...  If he had Revis' work ethic he could be an all-time great....

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I remember reading that Cro threw a football on a rope 65 yards in the air......underhanded.  And he did it effortlessly.  He's like a Bo Jackson type guy, just plain born an athlete with freakish ability.  No matter what sport Cro ever decided to play at a young age, he was going to be a star.  But like others have said,  if he had put the amount of time in his craft that Revis has for example, he would've likely been the best ever.  He relies on his physical gifts over technique, so as he ages he's going to fall off a cliff and fast once his body betrays him.

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Kind of a catch-22 situation, sadly.  Guys who are that gifted can rely purely on their talent their whole careers, and are still told how great they are even when they clearly aren't putting the work in that others are.  But when you get to the pros, that difference becomes magnified eventually. 

When you look at the best players of all-time, almost all of them had some kind of physical shortcoming they had to overcome.  Jerry Rice went to a small school and didn't have the prototypical size or speed you look for.  Ray Lewis was labeled as undersized.  Very rarely do superior athletic gifts align with an insane work ethic. 

just like how very rarely are beautiful women charming, funny, and have warm personalities. Although it is much more common outside US.

Edited by jgb
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just like how very rarely are beautiful women charming, funny, and have warm personalities. Although it is much more common outside US.

Because we value beauty higher than basically every other culture, and thus other cultures have a lot more beautiful women who are also cool, whereas beautiful women here think that's all they need, and its confirmed by everyday life.

Double-edged sword.  

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