This past week, Vincent Verhei of Football Outsiders contributed a piece to ESPN that listed the most underrated player from each team in the NFL. They describe the list as highlighting players who they think “should be better known and/or given more credit for their teams' success (or perhaps less blame for their teams' failure).”
Defensive end Desmond Bryant was listed as the most underrated player on the Browns:
DE Desmond Bryant - Bryant's 91 percent stop rate against the run was third in the league, and he led the team with six sacks. But you'd be hard-pressed to find anyone outside northeast Ohio (and few within the Cleveland city limits) who knows who he is.
Earlier this month, I talked about how Bryant is a solid all-around player who will be taking on a greater leadership role this season. He is the team’s oldest defensive lineman, with plenty of youngsters looking up to him.
The rest of the underrated players in the AFC North were DT Brandon Williams (Ravens), LT Andrew Whitworth (Bengals), and DT Stephon Tuitt (Steelers). I don’t think Whitworth is underrated at all, but the reasoning Football Outsiders gave is that they basically feel like LT Joe Thomas has stolen all of the AFC thunder at the tackle position, when in reality, Whitworth is on near-equal footing to Thomas.