CINCINNATI, OH - JANUARY 01: Vonta Leach #44 of the Baltimore Ravens celebrates as he walks off of the field following the 24-16 win over the Cincinnati Bengals at Paul Brown Stadium on January 1, 2012 in Cincinnati, Ohio. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
In the list of the Top 100 Players of 2012, on NFL.com, it's nice to see a player from your favorite team. Usually, one would expect one of the skill players, be it from the quarterback, running back, wide receivers, or the star defensive player whose name is mentioned. Most Baltimore Ravens fans recall that LB Ray Lewis was ranked fourth and FS Ed Reed was ranked right behind him at number five.
QB Joe Flacco has already appeared on the Top 100 Players of 2012 list, ranked 74th, after being 90th in 2011. However, to see the name of a guy who rarely touches the ball announced as the 45th best player in the league was a pleasant surprise even to Ravens fans. Fullback Vonta Leach earned that slot after springing RB Ray Rice to his best rushing total in 2012. Leach was on the 2011 list, ranking 65th last season.
Acting as Rice's personal battering ram, Leach opened holes for Rice all season long and is easily the best at his position in the entire league. Click on the link to the story and video above to see how effective Leach's blocks were in not only improving Rice's stats, but helping the Ravens run the ball down the throats of opponents while other teams knew they could only move the ball on the Ravens through the air.
Major props to you, Vonta!