Five Packers Make Pro Football Focus's Top 101 List

PFF had two Packer defenders and three Packer offensive players on its year-end list of the top 101 graded players in the league.

Pro Football Focus (PFF) recently released its rankings of its top 101 players of 2019, determined based on overall player grading. Five Packers made the list.

Here are the Packers who made the list and what PFF had to say about them:


There are so many devastating interior defenders in the NFL today that fitting them all on this list is a challenge. Green Bay's Kenny Clark has developed into one of the league's better pass-rushing forces inside, despite entering the league as a nose tackle and still plying much of his trade there. Including the playoffs, only Aaron Donald and Chris Jones had a higher PFF pass-rushing grade than Clark among interior defenders, and he tallied 69 total pressures. Only a relative step back in his run defense kept him from being much higher on the list.


The enigma that is Aaron Rodgers continues to confound. Just when all hope of seeing the very best of Rodgers again had almost vanished for good, he pulled out one of the best games he has had in years in the playoffs against the Seahawks but wasn't able to back it up in the NFC Championship game against the 49ers. Overall, Rodgers is still capable of those sensational games, but his baseline has slipped from where it once was, and he ended the year ranked seventh in overall PFF grade at the position. At his best, Rodgers has been the No. 1 player on this list in multiple seasons, and while he has slipped from that level, he is still good enough to be one of the best 101 players in the league.


While the Packers' offense generally failed to find consistency, running back Aaron Jones was always keeping pace with the best players in the league in terms of PFF grades despite never getting the kind of workload other backs did. Jones ranked just 15th in terms of carries but had the fifth-best PFF grade of any back. He averaged over three yards per carry after contact, racking up 750 of his 1,078 yards after being hit by defenders. He broke 43 tackles along the way and added another eight through the air on 50 receptions.


Few receivers are more important to their team's passing success than Green Bay's Davante Adams, who remains the only receiver that Aaron Rodgers truly trusts on a regular basis. The trust isn't misplaced, as Adams is one of the best route runners in the game and arguably possesses the best release off the line of anybody. In the team's two playoff appearances, Adams averaged 8.5 catches for 149 yards and a touchdown, and over the entire season, he caught 68.5% of the targets that were sent his way.


New free-agent acquisition Za'Darius Smith hit the ground running for the Green Bay Packers, rejuvenating the team's pass-rush alongside Preston Smith and Kenny Clark. Za'Darius led the NFL in total pressures with 93 over the regular season, and he added another 11 over the course of the two playoff performances. Few players rushed the passer with as much versatility as Smith did, as he lined up all across the defensive front to find favorable matchups.


You can access the entire list here.


Tim Backes is a lifelong Packer fan and a contributor to CheeseheadTV. Follow him on Twitter @timbackes for his Packer takes, random musings and Untappd beer check-ins.

1 points

Comments (4)

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packerbackerjim's picture

February 10, 2020 at 12:52 pm

What a crock. Year before HHCD was the second best safety; this year, baker Mayfield was the 10th best QB. Mahomes 4th and Lamar Jackson 7th is the dumbest crap I’ve read. Why anyone uses PFF as reference source is ludicrous.

-1 points
NitschkeFan's picture

February 10, 2020 at 04:40 pm

Hey pacerbakerjim, no method of "ranking" is perfect.

PFF may not be perfect but I thought those write-ups on the 5 Packers they mentioned was actually pretty much the way I saw them (I assume you too watched every snap of every Packer's game, but maybe you saw it differently).

I don't subscribe to PFF but you ask why anyone uses them as a reference source and it is because they are grading every player on every snap. Most of us can't watch every game of each and every team. And we know that no statistical measure is without flaws but the PFF rating adds one more piece of information to the puzzle.

Many position's do not generate many "statistics" so it's hard to rank/rate those position's. It may not be perfect but at least PFF is making an effort.

Even position's that generate a ton of statistics, like QB's, can have very different ratings depending on how the different stats are weighted. They ranked Rodgers at #7, whereas the usual QB rating I believe had him around 13, and the ESPN QBR had him at #20. Football Outsider's (kind of a competitor to PFF) had Rodger's ranked at #8. What is the most accurate or "truth"? Who knows?

1 points
packerbackerjim's picture

February 10, 2020 at 06:45 pm

You make some interesting points. I remain skeptical of the “rankings” based on wildly inaccurate statements PFF puts forth. I do not disparage their exhaustive approach, just their interpretations. To each their own.

2 points
Lphill's picture

February 10, 2020 at 03:07 pm

Doesn’t Mike Florio the number 1 Vikings fan have some influence with PFF?

0 points

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