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Green Zone League Articles

GZL's Most Freakish Athletes(FB/WR/TE)
By Paul Willis
Special to gzl-football.com

Part two of the series is finally here. In part one I examined the most freakish QB's and HB's and discovered that for the most part, those players came out of our drafts. In part two I think you'll notice a lean towards the original roster in terms of top end athleticism, as 8 of the 9 players listed were part of the original roster set. Let's get right in to it.

Fullback

Mike Tolbert - 5'9" - 243 LBS - 86 SPD - 81 STR - 80 AGI - 88 ACC - 85 BTK - 65 JMP

This will probably be the least interesting position piece, as fullbacks are arguably the least glamorized players in the league. Even the league's "Iron Man" award has only been one by a fullback once, and that was in its first season. But the most exciting athlete at the position is prettty easily Tolbert. Despite being only 5'9", Tolbert is among the league's strongest at the position and the only fullback faster is converted halfback Mikel LeShoure.

Tolbert has only played for respected franchises, going from the Chargers to Bucs to the Packers. A true triple threat, Tolbert has almost 1200 all purpose yards and 10 TD's, and is 28th in GZL history in pancake blocks. Yeah, 28th of ALL the players in the league.

Honorable Mention

Harvey Unga - 6'0" - 254 LBS - 85 SPD - 80 STR - 85 AGI - 86 ACC

Unga, another roster original, is the closest thing going to Tolbert, but hasn't produced at the same level.

FREE AGENT - Naufahu Tahi - 6'0" - 254 LBS - 78 SPD - 86 STR - 70 AGI - 82 ACC
Another roster original, Tahi has been passed over more often than not due to his low AWR rating. In his first 2 seasons he had 60+ pancakes a year in Minnesota before spending 2 years working for a Utah used car dealership. In 2014 he was signed by Houston, but he rode the bench after Bradie Ewing was drafted and is once again unemployed by the GZL. And yes, this is me pimping him. Use your veteran exception on him in a few weeks, he's great!


Wide Receiver

Calvin Johnson - 6'5" - 249 LBS - 95 SPD - 78 STR - 96 AGI - 96 ACC - 99 JMP

Couldn't have been more obvious right? Well it was closer than you think, Demaryius Thomas would've been the choice if it weren't for Johnson's incredible combo of AGI/ACC/JMP. The extra 2 inches and 20+ pounds helped too.

Johnson's freakishness has translated extremely well to the field. He's the GZL's all-time receiving leader by over 1,000 yards and is one of only 2 players to ever hit the 2,000 yard mark. Not surprisingly, his huge frame and strength have also helped him to be the most prolific yards after catch producer in league history. The Lions nearly won it all a couple years ago thanks in large part to Johnson, but he was shut down in the Super Bowl.

Honorable Mention

Demaryius Thomas - 6'3" - 224 LBS - 97 SPD - 76 STR - 93 AGI - 92 ACC - 95 JMP
Thomas has the size and tools to be one of the best receivers in the game but has never managed to put it all together. Whether that's a result of the offenses he's been a part of or a personal flaw is yet to be seen. Still a highly productive player.

A.J. Green - 6'4" - 211 LBS - 94 SPD - 69 STR - 91 AGI - 96 ACC - 90 JMP
The first GZL draftee to make the list in part two, Green was drafted 1.4 with good reason. After a decent rookie year, has put up 1499 yards or more each season.


Tight End

Vernon Davis - 6'3" - 253 LBS - 90 SPD - 84 STR - 87 AGI - 92 ACC - 94 JMP

This one's not even close. Vernon Davis, much like Cameron Newton, stands head and shoulders above his peers at his position in terms of athleticism. Like Newton, Davis could play any number of positions and excel. Unlike Newton, Davis IS allowed to play multiple roles. It's hard to tell how exactly the Chargers utilize Davis. According to their most recent depth chart he's not in the mix at WR.

Something about San Diego set Davis off though. After 3 fairly pedestrian seasons in San Fran, he exploded. He put up 1850 yards and 13 TD's in his two full seasons as a Charger and bolstered that with 80+ pancakes both years on his way to back to back Iron Man of the Year awards. I'm guessing the Chargers offense was just a much better fit for Davis' skillset, but it proves how much a difference a tight end can make. When Blaine Gabbert and Ryan Mathews went down in 2013, Davis stepped up and helped make Jordan Todman look like a star on the way to a Super Bowl title by leading the team in pancakes in the last two games(not sure what he did in the divisional playoff game since the gamelog seems to be gone or damaged). Oh yeah, also the all-time receiving and blocking leader among tight ends.

Honorable Mention

Jermichael Finley - 6'5" - 245 LBS - 85 SPD - 75 STR - 87 AGI - 87 ACC - 95 JMP
If it weren't for Davis, Finley would be the pick. A great combination of size and speed have helped him become 5th among TE's in receiving and 4th in blocking.

Fendi Onobun - 6'6" - 262 LBS - 89 SPD - 66 STR - 82 AGI - 91 ACC - 90 JMP
Only Davis and converted WR Greg Little are faster. Onobun's giant frame has made him one of the steadiest players in the league despite starting his career with 40 AWR.
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