Pro Football Focus (PFF) released their yearly list on the Top 101 NFL players from this past season. According to PFF, it gives them a chance to acknowledge and praise the best players from the 2022 season one last time before we look ahead to assembling rosters for the upcoming year. Two New Orleans Saints players were listed on the PFF Top 101 Players from the 2022 and they are linebacker Demario Davis and safety Tyrann Mathieu.
No. 60: Tyrann Mathieu, New Orleans Saints:
Hear from PFF on why they ranked Mathieu the No. 60 overall player in the NFL even when the Saints defense getting off to a slow start to the year:
“The New Orleans Saints defense underachieved in 2022, but there were impressive individual performances within the unit, and Tyrann Mathieu was one of them. In coverage, Mathieu had four pass breakups to go along with three interceptions, and he lined up all over the Saints’ secondary.”
Mathieu spent the first several years of his NFL career with the Arizona Cardinals, Houston Texans and Kansas City Chiefs before getting to return to his home state to play for New Orleans. The All-Pro safety would agree to a three-year, $33M contract on May 4th of 2022. He has shown throughout his career that he can be a hard-hitting safety and has the versatility to play anywhere in the secondary.
During the 2022 season for New Orleans, Mathieu appeared in 17 games and started in all of them. The New Orleans native would register 91 tackles (58 solo tackles), one sack, eight pass deflections, three interceptions and one fumble recovery. He would also gain three tackles for loss in his 10th NFL season.
His best game of the season came against the Cleveland Browns where Mathieu would record a season-high in 11 tackles, including one tackle for loss. Mathieu would help the Saints contain the Browns running game as New Orleans was able to come away with a 17-10 win on the road.
No. 52 Demario Davis, New Orleans Saints:
Hear from PFF on why they ranked Davis the No. 52 overall player in the NFL last season as he continues to remain one of the bright spots on the New Orleans Saints defense:
“Since arriving in New Orleans, Davis has been one of the best linebackers in football, and this year was no exception. He recorded four pass breakups in coverage and racked up 43 defensive stops while earning impressive grades in every area except tackling, where 17 misses was a rare below-average return for him.”
Ever since he signed with the Saints before the start of the 2018 season, the veteran linebacker has made an instant impact for the defense. Not only has he been able to produce on the field, but he has been a vital leader in the Saints locker room. He continues to provide for the community as he not only is a good football player on the field, but goes above and beyond off of the field. For his involvement in the community, Davis would qualify for the prestigious Walter Payton Man of the Year Award.
For the 2022 season, Davis played and started in all 17 games for New Orleans would earn a spot on the Pro Bowl roster for the first time in his career in the NFL. Davis registered 109 tackles (46 solo tackles), 6.5 sacks, one interception and a fumble recovery. His best outing came against the Cincinnati Bengals where Davis would combine for nine tackles, two sacks, two tackles for loss and two quarterback hits. Even in the 30-26 loss against the Bengals, he was able to have a monster day.
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