DeForest Buckner wasn’t the only Colts player who made Pro Football Network’s Top 100. Coming in at No. 13 is their 3x All-Pro guard Quenton Nelson.
Not only does Nelson rank inside the Top 20, like Buckner, but he also ranks ahead of several other NFL stars like Titans’ running back Derrick Henry, Dolphins’ cornerback Xavien Howard, Packers’ cornerback Jaire Alexander, and even Chiefs’ wideout Tyreek Hill.
If anything, Nelson being ranked ahead of those stars speaks to not only how valuable he is to the team’s offensive line, but Indy’s entire roster as a whole. Nelson’s impact, similar to Buckner’s, has helped Indy’s offensive line go from one of the most antiquated units to one of the NFLs preeminent in such a short period of time.
Nelson’s pure dominance and physical nature to the game is part of what makes him one of the best players who’s ever put on a Colts uniform and a cornerstone of the franchise for the next decade plus.
While the team did exercise Nelson’s fifth-year option, there’s absolutely no way GM Chris Ballard lets him walk out the door without a lengthy and much-deserved contract extension. After all, Nelson is only the second player in league history to be named first-team All-Pro in each of his first three seasons. The other is Hall of Fame running back Barry Sanders.
Dalton Miller, an NFL Lead Analyst for PFN who put this piece together (linked here), spoke highly of Nelson’s play and impact to the team.
Miller writes, in part, “Quenton Nelson was the cleanest draft prospect I’ve evaluated. The only way this young man wasn’t a future All-Pro was through catastrophic injury. Nelson quickly ascended into one of the best blockers in the NFL. He ranks high on our Top 100 Players heading into the 2021 NFL season, and he’s only just begun.”
Miller isn’t the only analyst to have such high praise for Nelson, though, as many others labeled the superstar guard as a “can’t-miss prospect” prior to the 2018 NFL Draft.
Without question, Nelson has not only lived up to what many expected him to become at the next level, but he’s well on his way to becoming one of the greatest players the NFL has ever seen.