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Be The GM: Elite 8

By Christopher Reina

The mythical question of which player you would want to build an NFL franchise around is one that always triggers intriguing debate and scrutiny. The Indianapolis Colts have had this question posed to them in a microcosm twice in the last 15 years when they chose between Peyton Manning and Ryan Leaf in 1998, and Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III in 2012.

We will attempt to answer the question with a tournament-style contest where you get to vote one matchup at a time.

In order to create a field of 32 candidates, we selected the most franchise-player worthy player from every NFL team.

Quarterbacks are unquestionably the most valuable commodity in the NFL, but only 25 percent of the players in this poll play the position. Since you are starting a franchise from scratch in this scenario, age matters (ruling out the likes of Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees), while players with a teammate that were clearly amongst the best at their position were picked over quarterbacks that are only slightly above league average.

We last did this exercise in 2006 for the NFL and the Final Four players were Peyton Manning, Reggie Bush, Tom Brady and Eli Manning. 

The second round had fewer close matchups than we were expecting, with A.J. Green (60 percent) over Ray Rice (40 percent) being the tightest.

Now we are down to eight players; five quarterbacks, an elite pass rusher, a wide receiver and a tight end.

Elite 8

NFC Semifinal 1

Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers

Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons

NFC Semifinal 2

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers

Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins

AFC Semifinal 1

Von Miller, Denver Broncos

Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts

AFC Semifinal 2

A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals

Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots

Sweet 16

NFC West Round 2

Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers (68%)

Patrick Peterson, Arizona Cardinals (32%)

NFC South Round 2

Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons (76%)

Darrelle Revis, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (24%)

NFC North Round 2

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers (72%)

Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings (28%)

NFC East Round 2

Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins (72%)

Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants

AFC West Round 2

Eric Weddle, San Diego Chargers (14%)

Von Miller, Denver Broncos (86%)

AFC South Round 2

J.J. Watt, Houston Texans (33%)

Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts (67%)

AFC North Round 2

Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens (40%)

A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals (60%)

AFC East Round 2

Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots (67%)

Muhammad Wilkerson, New York Jets (33%)

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Round of 32 Results

NFC West 1

Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers (57%)

Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks (43%)

NFC West 2

Patrick Peterson, Arizona Cardinals (78%)

Chris Long, St. Louis Rams (22%)

NFC South 1

Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers (27%)

Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons (63%)

NFC South 2

Darrelle Revis, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (54%)

Jimmy Graham, New Orleans Saints (46%)

NFC North 1

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers (94%)

Brandon Marshall, Chicago Bears (6%)

NFC North 2

Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings (70%)

Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions (30%)

NFC East 1

Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins (85%)

Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys (15%)

NFC East 2

Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (57%)

LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles (43%)

AFC West 1

Jared Veldheer, Oakland Raiders (45%)

Eric Weddle, San Diego Chargers (55%)

AFC West 2

Von Miller, Denver Broncos (75%)

Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs (25%)

AFC South 1

J.J. Watt, Houston Texans (95%)

Derrick Morgan, Tennessee Titans (5%)

AFC South 2

Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts (94%)

Paul Posulszny, Jacksonville Jaguars (6%)

AFC North 1

Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers (38%)

Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens (62%)

AFC North 2

Joe Thomas, Cleveland Browns (35%)

A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals (65%)

AFC East 1

Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots (63%)

Jairus Byrd, Buffalo Bills (37%)

AFC East 2

Reshad Jones, Miami Dolphins (24%)

Muhammad Wilkerson, New York Jets (76%)


Be The GM: Round Of 16

By Christopher Reina

The mythical question of which player you would want to build an NFL franchise around is one that always triggers intriguing debate and scrutiny. The Indianapolis Colts have had this question posed to them in a microcosm twice in the last 15 years when they chose between Peyton Manning and Ryan Leaf in 1998, and Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III in 2012.

We will attempt to answer the question with a tournament-style contest where you get to vote one matchup at a time.

In order to create a field of 32 candidates, we selected the most franchise-player worthy player from every NFL team.

Quarterbacks are unquestionably the most valuable commodity in the NFL, but only 25 percent of the players in this poll play the position. Since you are starting a franchise from scratch in this scenario, age matters (ruling out the likes of Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees), while players with a teammate that were clearly amongst the best at their position were picked over quarterbacks that are only slightly above league average.

We last did this exercise in 2006 for the NFL and the Final Four players were Peyton Manning, Reggie Bush, Tom Brady and Eli Manning. 

The first round produced several uneven matchups such as Aaron Rodgers against Brandon Marshall and Andrew Luck versus Paul Posulszny, but the 16 that advanced are all deserving and should create tighter results.

Sweet 16

NFC West Round 2

Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers (68%)

Patrick Peterson, Arizona Cardinals (32%)

NFC South Round 2

Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons (76%)

Darrelle Revis, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (24%)

NFC North Round 2

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers (72%)

Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings (28%)

NFC East Round 2

Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins (72%)

Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants

AFC West Round 2

Eric Weddle, San Diego Chargers (14%)

Von Miller, Denver Broncos (86%)

AFC South Round 2

J.J. Watt, Houston Texans (33%)

Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts (67%)

AFC North Round 2

Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens (40%)

A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals (60%)

AFC East Round 2

Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots (67%)

Muhammad Wilkerson, New York Jets (33%)

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Round of 32 Results

NFC West 1

Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers (57%)

Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks (43%)

NFC West 2

Patrick Peterson, Arizona Cardinals (78%)

Chris Long, St. Louis Rams (22%)

NFC South 1

Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers (27%)

Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons (63%)

NFC South 2

Darrelle Revis, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (54%)

Jimmy Graham, New Orleans Saints (46%)

NFC North 1

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers (94%)

Brandon Marshall, Chicago Bears (6%)

NFC North 2

Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings (70%)

Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions (30%)

NFC East 1

Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins (85%)

Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys (15%)

NFC East 2

Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (57%)

LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles (43%)

AFC West 1

Jared Veldheer, Oakland Raiders (45%)

Eric Weddle, San Diego Chargers (55%)

AFC West 2

Von Miller, Denver Broncos (75%)

Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs (25%)

AFC South 1

J.J. Watt, Houston Texans (95%)

Derrick Morgan, Tennessee Titans (5%)

AFC South 2

Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts (94%)

Paul Posulszny, Jacksonville Jaguars (6%)

AFC North 1

Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers (38%)

Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens (62%)

AFC North 2

Joe Thomas, Cleveland Browns (35%)

A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals (65%)

AFC East 1

Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots (63%)

Jairus Byrd, Buffalo Bills (37%)

AFC East 2

Reshad Jones, Miami Dolphins (24%)

Muhammad Wilkerson, New York Jets (76%)


Be The GM: Who's Your Pick To Build An NFL Franchise Around?

By Christopher Reina

The mythical question of which player you would want to build an NFL franchise around is one that always triggers intriguing debate and scrutiny. The Indianapolis Colts have had this question posed to them in a microcosm twice in the last 15 years when they chose between Peyton Manning and Ryan Leaf in 1998, and Andrew Luck and Robert Griffin III in 2012.

We will attempt to answer the question with a tournament-style contest where you get to vote one matchup at a time.

In order to create a field of 32 candidates, we selected the most franchise-player worthy player from every NFL team.

Quarterbacks are unquestionably the most valuable commodity in the NFL, but only 25 percent of the players in this poll play the position. Since you are starting a franchise from scratch in this scenario, age matters (ruling out the likes of Tom Brady, Peyton Manning and Drew Brees), while players with a teammate that were clearly amongst the best at their position were picked over quarterbacks that are only slightly above league average.

We last did this exercise in 2006 for the NFL and the Final Four players were Peyton Manning, Reggie Bush, Tom Brady and Eli Manning. 

NFC West 1

Colin Kaepernick, San Francisco 49ers (57%)

Russell Wilson, Seattle Seahawks (43%)

NFC West 2

Patrick Peterson, Arizona Cardinals (78%)

Chris Long, St. Louis Rams (22%)

NFC South 1

Cam Newton, Carolina Panthers (27%)

Matt Ryan, Atlanta Falcons (63%)

NFC South 2

Darrelle Revis, Tampa Bay Buccaneers (54%)

Jimmy Graham, New Orleans Saints (46%)

NFC North 1

Aaron Rodgers, Green Bay Packers (94%)

Brandon Marshall, Chicago Bears (6%)

NFC North 2

Adrian Peterson, Minnesota Vikings (70%)

Calvin Johnson, Detroit Lions (30%)

NFC East 1

Robert Griffin III, Washington Redskins (85%)

Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys (15%)

NFC East 2

Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants (57%)

LeSean McCoy, Philadelphia Eagles (43%)

AFC West 1

Jared Veldheer, Oakland Raiders (45%)

Eric Weddle, San Diego Chargers (55%)

AFC West 2

Von Miller, Denver Broncos (75%)

Jamaal Charles, Kansas City Chiefs (25%)

AFC South 1

J.J. Watt, Houston Texans (95%)

Derrick Morgan, Tennessee Titans (5%)

AFC South 2

Andrew Luck, Indianapolis Colts (94%)

Paul Posulszny, Jacksonville Jaguars (6%)

AFC North 1

Ben Roethlisberger, Pittsburgh Steelers (38%)

Ray Rice, Baltimore Ravens (62%)

AFC North 2

Joe Thomas, Cleveland Browns (35%)

A.J. Green, Cincinnati Bengals (65%)

AFC East 1 

Rob Gronkowski, New England Patriots (63%)

Jairus Byrd, Buffalo Bills (37%)

AFC East 2

Reshad Jones, Miami Dolphins (24%)

Muhammad Wilkerson, New York Jets (76%)



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