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Why the Chargers Feel Joey Bosa's Top 100 Rating was "Disrespectful"
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First things first – being named to the NFL Network’s Top 100 Players of 2017 is an honor.
Solely decided upon by players, the annual event kicked off Monday night with defensive end Joey Bosa in the number 100 position. Few make the list as a rookie, so seeing the reigning Defensive Rookie of the Year on it shows just how much the 21-year old took the league by storm.
However, a number of Bosa’s teammates took issue with where he ranked. They fully expected number 99 to be on the list, but at number 100?
“To me, I think that’s a little disrespectful,” fellow defensive lineman Damion Square said. “I really do. I’ve been playing football my whole life, and when you see someone who is different, you know it. Joey is different. He’s one of those guys. I’m glad they put him on the list because he’s extremely deserving, and I know he’s excited about it. But, 100? Really?! It’s disrespectful. When I saw it I felt like they know they had to put him on there, but it’s too soon to put him higher. Like he is a rookie and has to (earn his dues). I felt like that couldn’t respect that.”
Square wasn’t the only defensive lineman who took umbrage with the ranking.
“Number 100?!” Tenny Palepoi exclaimed in equal disbelief. “Honestly, I thought he would be a lot higher than that. The kid came in and in 12 games; look what he did. To have the season that he had; he should have been a lot higher than that. They are saying he is only the 100th best player? Even if he was in the 30s I’d think it was too low. He is a great kid and deserves everything coming his way.”
After being selected third over in the 2016 NFL Draft, Bosa quickly established himself as a force to be reckoned with. He led the Bolts with 10.5 sacks in only 12 games, which were the most sacks by an NFL rookie since 2011. They were also the second most by a Chargers rookie since Leslie O’Neal’s 12.5 in 1986. He ended the year on a tear, posting at least half a sack in the final six games. It is the longest stretch by any player in team history since 2001.
Bosa was a game-wrecker beyond his ability to get to the quarterback. Number 99 also notched 48 total tackles, 45 pressures, 19 tackles for loss, 15 QB hits, two passes defensed and one forced fumble.
“I’m happy for him that he is on the list,” Jason Verrett said. “He balled out and was obviously the rookie of the year. I think he should have been higher, so I’m pretty sure he’s going to be more motivated. But he’s a rookie. Not many rookies get that kind of (respect) to be on the list at all. I salute him. I have much respect for him.”