The NFL Network unveiled the top 10 in its countdown of the Top 100 Players of 2016 on Wednesday night, with Carolina Panthers quarterback Cam Newton making a Superman-like leap into the top spot after placing 73rd in 2015.
No Cincinnati Bengals appeared in the top 10, but one divisional rival in Pittsburgh wide receiver Antonio Brown came in at No. 4 in voting done by the players.
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Three other Bengals opponents in 2016 also appeared in the top 10: New England quarterback Tom Brady (No. 9) and tight end Rob Gronkowski (No. 9) and Houston defensive end J.J. Watt (No. 3).
Seven players who were with the Bengals in 2015 are included in the Top 100, led by wide receiver A.J. Green at 16, which is a substantial jump from his 2015 ranking of 37th.
Green ranked as high as ninth in 2014 and finished and 16th in 2013, 77th in 2012.
Here is the list of the other Bengals in this year’s top 100 (click the name to watch the NFL Network piece on each player):
29. Defensive tackle Geno Atkins (48th in 2014, 36th in 2013)
35. Quarterback Andy Dalton
44. Tight end Tyler Eifert
67. Tackle Andrew Whitworth
70. Defensive end Carlos Dunlap
Former Bengals safety Reggie Nelson, who signed with Oakland in the offseason, came in at No. 60.
Counting Nelson, the seven Bengals not only are the most the team has had in the Top 100 since the NFL began the rankings in 2011, it equals the combined number of Cincinnati players appearing in the countdown.
The Bengals had one player in 2015, three in 2014, two in 2013, on in 2012 and one in 2011.
The only other Bengals to appear in the Top 100 in previous years were Vontaze Burfict (52nd in 2014) and Terrell Owens (91st in 2011).