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Do you agree?
By Pete Prisco
CBSSports.com Senior Writer
June 9, 2011
They love the signature hair flying out from his helmet. They love the highlight hits that make the fools on some four-letter network swoon and yell "jacked up."
They love his name. They love his game.
Troy Polamalu is an NFL darling.
He's also the league's most-overrated player.
There, I said it.
He was selected as the NFL's Defensive Player of the Year in 2010 -- an award I couldn't figure out -- and then disappeared in the playoffs, even getting trucked by Ray Rice of the Ravens in the playoffs.
He was a spinning top in the Super Bowl, trying to cover Packers receivers and instead watched them rip off big gains and two touchdowns on his watch.
The Packers exposed the reason I think Polamalu is overrated. He isn't great in coverage and the NFL is now a cover game.
He's a good player. He's just not great.
I've always believed he was a gambler in the back end, and good teams and smart quarterbacks could take advantage of his aggressive style, which the Packers and Aaron Rodgers did. He gets away with it against bad quarterbacks, but good ones can use his aggressive style to their advantage (See Tom Brady).
They say Polamalu had a groin issue in the playoffs, but if you're on the field, you're healthy enough to take the heat. And haven't injuries been an issue for him the past five seasons? He has played 16 games only once in five years.
That has to mean something in the rating game, doesn't it?
He's good. I just don't think he's great. That makes him overrated. I bet even some Steelers fans would concur after the playoffs.
So who's the league's most underrated?
The honor goes to a former undrafted player cut by his first team named Tramon Williams. He was the best cover player for the Super Bowl champs last year, even though most would assume it was Charles Woodson.
Talk to scouts, personnel people and even members of the Packers coaching staff and they'll all say that it's Williams who is now the better cover player. Woodson is still a ball-hawking playmaker, but he isn't the cover corner Williams is at this point in his career.
Yet Williams didn't go to the Pro Bowl.
Williams isn't mentioned on many lists as one of the top 10 corners in the game.
Williams gets slighted more than he gets beat.
That makes him the NFL's most underrated player.
Coverage is key now. That's why Williams is underrated and why Polamalu is overrated.
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