This series will feature the top 10 players in each division regardless of team or position. This is measured by a combination of their current impact on the field, their potential in the future and their accomplishments in the past.
One quick note about the AFC North, it has a boatload of superstar players. Consider some of the names that were left off of this top 10: Paul Kruger, Alex Mack, Joe Flacco, Maurkice Pouncey, Jeremy Hill, Steve Smith, C. J. Mosley, Andrew Whitworth, Kelvin Beachum and Geno Atkins in no specific order. Brutal.
1. Joe Thomas, T, Cleveland Browns
When it’s all said and done he may be viewed as one of the best tackles to ever play the game. He’s been to 8 straight Pro Bowls and hasn’t missed a single start during that span. Thomas is the golden standard at his position.
2. Antonio Brown, WR, Pittsburgh, Steelers
Arguably the best and most explosive receiver in football right now. When you look at how Ben Roethlisberger is playing the best football of his career at 33, it’s easy to see why with the two playmakers on this list.
3. Elvis Dumervil, OLB, Baltimore Ravens
The deadly and devastating pass rusher just tied a career high with 17 sacks and made his fourth Pro Bowl.
4. A. J. Green, WR, Cincinnati Bengals
He’s been over 1,000 yards receiving in all four of his first seasons and imagine what he would be doing with an elite quarterback.
5. Terrell Suggs, OLB, Baltimore Ravens
He might be older but he’s still awesome. He’s showing no signs of slowing down at 32 with 12 sacks last season. His decorated career speaks for itself.
6. Ben Roethlisberger, QB, Pittsburgh Steelers
Putting him this low seems like a slight but it says more about the quality above him. He’s a fantastic quarterback that’s only gotten better since he won two Super Bowls.
7. Marshal Yanda, G, Baltimore Ravens
Despite four straight Pro Bowls he still seems oddly underrated. Make no mistake he’s one of the very best at his position in the entire league.
8. Le’Veon Bell, RB, Pittsburgh Steelers
As if rushing for over 1,300 yards wasn’t impressive enough he also had over 850 yards receiving. He carried the Steelers on his back often times. He’s quickly developing into one of the very best backs in football.
9. Tashaun Gipson, S, Cleveland Browns
He’s quietly led the AFC with 11 interceptions in the last two seasons combined. The playmaker is on the rise. He’s coming off his first Pro Bowl trip.
10. Joe Haden, CB, Cleveland Browns
A top tier cover corner in the league. Hard to believe he barely made this list.