This is a guest post from Greg Linton, Corey Peters' agent. You might be inclined to dismiss an agent's thoughts on his own client, but this is well worth reading.
Corey Peters on the 2012 Pro Bowl Ballot? Ha!
In a Bleacher Report article before the season, Tony Santorsa featured Atlanta Defensive tackle Corey Peters in his article labeled "30 of the Worst NFL Starters entering 2011." Now, I do not know too much about Tony, and I am sure he is a fine columnist, but as an evaluator of NFL talent, I wouldn’t give my vote as a future GM.
The reasons he gave were Corey tallied just 33 tackles as a rookie and only 1 sack. Well those 33 tackles ranked 16th among all DTs (including ends in a 3-4 defense), and 7 of those tackles had the same number or less sacks.
Numbers aside, Corey is often asked to be a guy in the middle that eats up blocks, and taking on the double team. A fan might not see the importance of this job, but it is very critical to the success of a team, to have a player that does their job. So a top 30 worst starter is kind of a stretch to me. But what do I know?
Enter 2011, and the Falcons are starting to play some pretty good football. They have had injuries all across the defensive line so it’s been hard to get a rhythm, but with Babs, Abe, Ray, P.J., Kroy, Vance, and Corey starting to get healthy, you are starting to see a very good D line. So good in fact that all four starters are on the Pro Bowl ballot; yes, including Corey Peters.
While this name may surprise most fans, a closer look at the first half of the season would suggest that the spot on the ballot is warranted.
After missing the first game with a knee injury, Corey is ninth in tackles among all defensive tackles in the league. He is tied 2nd among defensive tackles with 3 sacks, just behind Cincinnati Bengals tackle Geno Atkins.
He is the only defensive tackle in the NFC that has a pass deflection—he's totaled four—and the only defensive tackle with an interception! Granted we are only halfway through the season, and no one knows how the season will end.
If you ask Corey about his play, he understands that he still has a lot to learn, and plenty of room to get better. The Pro Bowl ballot is the furthest thing from his mind, and his focus is on doing his job, and whatever is asked of him to help the Atlanta Falcons win games. But if you ask me, Corey is playing at a level that is on par with his peers and in many cases better.
His place on the ballot is warranted, and he deserves your vote.
What do you think of Corey Peters' season and Greg's point of view? Let us know!