Underrated and overrated — two terms that get thrown around by sports fans and media types alike.
Doug Farrar of SI.com has taken the latter category and is putting together his own version of the NFL’s All-Overrated Team. That doesn’t bode well for Arizona Cardinals’ defensive lineman Darnell Dockett.
Dockett, who has spent his entire nine-year career in Arizona and once had three sacks in a Super Bowl (how many can make that claim?) is Farrar’s poster boy for the overrated defense.
Dockett has been one of the better and more versatile defensive linemen in the league for a number of years, but his performance dropped in 2012 — from 3.5 sacks in 2011 to 1.5 last season, and down from 16 quarterback hits and 23 quarterback hurries in ’11 to seven and 10 last season.
Farrar does point out that Dockett is happy to play in new defensive coordinator Todd Bowles’ scheme, a system that should free him up to make more plays that show up on the stat sheet.
Bowles has said that he plans to have Dockett disrupt on his own as opposed to throwing gaps open for linebackers, but if the change of pace doesn’t set the veteran right, the Cards will have to wonder about the $5.5 million he’s due in 2014. There are times when “overrated” players are just victims of scheme, and this is the year we find out if Dockett’s one of those guys.
Joining Dockett on Farrar’s dubious squad are Philadelphia linebacker DeMeco Ryans, Washington linebacker London Fletcher, Cleveland linebacker Paul Kruger, Washington cornerback DeAngelo Hall and Philadelphia corner Cary Williams.