Patrick Mahomes cemented himself as the best player in football after winning the Super Bowl and signing the largest sports contract in history, but his peers don’t see it that way.
Lamar Jackson was ranked No. 1 in the NFL’s top 100 players of 2020 list. Not only was Mahomes not ranked first, but he was also ranked below Russell Wilson and Aaron Donald.
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Mahomes made note of placing fourth overall and being the third quarterback.
An argument can be made that the rankings were right. Jackson won the MVP award, Wilson led the Seahawks to the postseason, and Donald was the reason a lot of quarterbacks and running backs spent extra time in the cold tub on Mondays.
That argument only carries so much weight. Mahomes won the 2018 NFL MVP award, but he was also ranked fourth that season. His placement on the list shows the inconsistency and the difficulty of choosing the best player in football.
Some people will point to Mahomes’ knee injury last season as giving Jackson the edge, but he only missed two games, threw for 4,031 yards and was named to the Pro Bowl.
That shouldn’t take away from Jackson’s historic achievement. He’s the youngest player to ever be named no. 1 on the list. Jackson, 23, is even younger than this year’s No. 1 draft pick, Joe Burrow, so he still has more to add to his game.
More than 60 Iowa players in June opened up about the racial biases in the football program, and an external report has confirmed those findings.
ESPN reported that Missouri-based firm Husch Blackwell discovered that three coaches abused their power by verbally attacking and abusing players.
Hawkeyes head coach Kirk Ferentz mostly received positive remarks, but his unawareness of the problems were eye-opening. In a press conference Thursday, he vowed to change his approach.
Former Iowa strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle is the only coach who is no longer a member of the staff since the findings. Doyle was the staff remember who was noted the most by Black players as showing biased behaviors towards different races.
Ferentz has led Iowa since 1999. By keeping him in charge, the school believes he can make Iowa football a more inclusive environment. It won’t be long before Iowa finds out if its gamble pays off.
NBA basketball is back with a star-studded doubleheader to tip things off. Zion Williamson and the Pelicans will face the Jazz at 6:30 p.m. ET, and then the Lakers and Clippers will continue their fight for Los Angeles at 9 p.m. ET.
For the Jazz, it’s their big return to the spotlight after Rudy Gobert tested positive for COVID-19 and led to the NBA shut down. The Pelicans’ young roster includes first-time All-Star Brandon Ingram and one of the most hyped rookies of all-time, Zion Williamson.
Not a lot has to be said about the Clippers-Lakers. The Clippers’ top two players, Kawhi Leonard and Paul George, both went to college in California and grew up admiring the Lakers more than the Clippers. The Lakers have two MVP candidates and one of the most potent duos in the NBA in LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
The games will be fun. It will be interesting to see how many minutes the star players play and if there are any restrictions. One concern about the return after a long layoff was the injury risk. Coaches have to balance managing minutes and being as competitive as possible during the playoff push.