The Undisputed 20 Best Individual Performances of 2010, Part II


I measured it by overall dominance, level of competition, and – to a lesser extent – importance of the game. Picks 20-11 are here.

10. RB Darren McFadden @ DEN: 16 carries, 165 yds, 3 TD; 2 catches, 31 yds, 1 TD. McFadden’s 4 TD performance was awesome but Denver’s defense was the worst in the NFL last year (and there were some really bad defenses – Arizona, Houston, Dallas, Seattle – last year).

9. SS Troy Polamalu @ TEN: 1 INT, 3 tackles. Polamalu had a huge highlight tackle, jumping over both lines and was a part of a defense that forced 7 turnovers, gave up just 11 points and held reigning 2000-yard runner Chris Johnson to just 34 yards on 16 carries. James Harrison had 2 sacks, and 2 forced fumbles in this game, too.

8. QB Tom Brady @ PIT: 30/43, 350 yds, 3 TD/0 INT; 1 rush, 3 yds, TD. A big bounce-back game for Brady with little help from his defense, one week after losing to the Browns.

7. CB Deangelo Hall vs. CHI: 4 INT. Some of these were gimmes and if the Cutler touchdown run hadn’t been ruled a fumble (or if Lovie had challenged said ruling), maybe Jay doesn’t throw so many. That said, Hall owed Cutler a gift from Hawai’i because this masterpiece of Hall’s is how he got to the Pro Bowl.

6. RB Arian Foster vs. IND: 33 carries, 231 yds, 3 TD; 1 catch, 7 yds;
I don’t like to read much into week 1. Teams are just getting used to hitting again. This was a watershed game by Foster that I couldn’t push any further down the chart and that also catapulted him into stardom.

5. QB Michael Vick @ WAS: 20/28, 333 yds, 4 TD. 8 rushes, 80 yds, 2 TD; Vick came out guns blazing on Monday Night Football. This was a seismic beatdown of accuracy and athleticism.

4. Matt Hasselbeck vs. NO (Wild Card Round): 22/35, 272 yds, 4 TD/0 INT; 1 carry, -1yd; An absolutely sublime performance in a huge game for the upset of the year over the Super Bowl champs, yet Hasselbeck has had a lot of good games in his career and the Saints’ defense wasn’t nearly as good as last year, so this game wasn’t that surprising. It’s a solid, good game regardless of how bad Roman Harper played and his INT was tipped by his own receiver. What hurts it just a little bit was that the decisive play was a run by Marshawn Lynch.

3. RB Rashard Mendenhall vs. NYJ: 27 carries, 121 yds, 1 TD; 2 catches, 32 yds; Mendenhall’s early running won this game for them with bringing Pittsburgh down the field, into the end zone, and tearing down a lot of time off the clock. A man among boys. Mike Tomlin benched him not long ago and he is now one of the top 5 running backs in the league.

2. QB Aaron Rodgers vs. PIT (Super Bowl): 24/39, 304 yds, 3 TD/0 INT; 2 carries, -2 yds;
This statline would have been historic if not for six dropped passes. Polamalu clearly wasn’t 100% but Rodgers looked stratospheric in the biggest game of his career.

1. QB Aaron Rodgers @ ATL (Div. Round): 31/36, 366 yds, 3 TD/0INT; 2 carries, 13 yds, 1 TD; It’s hard to do that against the Lions in a regular season game, let alone in the playoffs on the road. This is a no-brainer. Pin-point accuracy, instinctive escapability, great reads and no turnovers against a 13-3 team at their place after they came off of a bye.

What are your picks for the best performances of the 2010 football season?


Enjoyed this post?
Subscribe to NFL Gridiron Gab via RSS Feed or E-mail and receive daily news updates from us!

Submit to Digg  Stumble This Story  Share on Twitter  Post on Facebook  Post on MySpace  Add to del.icio.us  Bark It Up  Submit to Reddit  Fave on Technorati

Comments are closed.