Yesterday we noted that Pro Football Focus is doing a rundown of the top 101 players from the 2010s. Dez Bryant was placed at #75, that was the cutoff for yesterday’s list. Today’s rankings do numbers 74 down to 50. If you go back to yesterday’s article, PFF outlines how they rank players and that includes production, and how long they played in the decade. That last point is important for one of the Cowboys listed.
On today’s list, a brand-new Cowboys player is listed at #72.
72. DI GERALD MCCOY
How fitting that Ndamukong Suh and Gerald McCoy — forever compared as draft prospects — end up one after another on the PFF Top 101 of the decade. McCoy is one of just five interior defenders to have notched 400 or more total pressures over the decade and was regularly the lone threat along the Tampa Bay defensive line that seemed impressively unable to surround him with any kind of assistance. McCoy has been one of the most consistently disruptive defensive tackles of the last decade.
McCoy came into the league in 2010, so he’s been there the entire time. 2012 through 2017 were McCoy’s prime years when he was a Pro Bowler every year and in 2013 he was First-Team All-Pro. In 2013, ‘14, and ‘15, McCoy had over eight sacks each season (9.5, 8.5, 8.5). The other thing about McCoy is his durability, he’s only had one season when he played fewer than 13 games and that was all the way back in his second year.
Now, for #51.
51. G ZACK MARTIN
One of the most consistently dominant linemen in the league every year, Zack Martin may have been the third-most-heralded lineman on his own offensive line for the better part of his career, often taking a backseat while Tyron Smith and Travis Frederick were heavily praised. However, the past few seasons have seen him elevate his game and earn far more recognition in his own right. Going up against — and largely shutting down — Fletcher Cox twice a season within the NFC East will help in that regard, and Martin has now earned an overall PFF grade above 85.0 in five of his first six seasons in the NFL.
That’s a slightly lame write up for the guy who is easily in the conversation for the best guard in the league. Obviously the fact that Martin only came into the league in 2014 hurts him in the overall production for the decade. He’s been a Pro Bowler every year he’s been in the league and in four of those years he was First-Team All-Pro. Even with his late start in the decade, it feels like PFF is kind of undervaluing Martin and his dominance.
Which other Cowboys do you think make this list?