FanPost

2007: The Greatest Draft Class Ever? Or Maybe Just First Round.

First off I'm not going to claim this is the best NFL Draft class ever. What I will say is that it's the most talented draft class in the 21st century. And when you read this, just please try and forget Jamarcus Russel, just imagine he never existed.

Disclaimer: I've based this post out of all the draft classes in the 2000's.

To start, let's focus on five players drafted within the first 14 picks: Calvin Johnson(2), Joe Thomas(3), Adrian Peterson(7), Patrick Willis(11) and Darrelle Revis(14). Each one of these players has earned Pro-Bowl Honors and All-Pro recognition multiple times. Even more, each one is considered the best at their respective positions, with a little debate for Joe Thomas out of the five. On top of that, four of them are in serious consideration for ending up as the best or one of the best players at their position ever, with again Joe Thomas being the odd one out.

If you were to pick an all decade team based only off players drafted in the 21st century, 5 of the players would come from the 2007 draft's first round. But of course this is open for debate. Other solid drafts this century were the 01' class and the 04' class.

In 2001, Michael Vick(1), Justin Smith(4), Ladainian Tomlinson(5), Reggie Wayne(30), Drew Brees(32), and Chad Johnson (34) were drafted, making this class exceptionally talented. But out of those 5, only Ladainian Tomlinson is really considered one the best players at his position in the history of the league. And even then he really isn''t.

In 2004, Eli Manning(1), Larry Fitzgerald(3), Sean Taylor(5), Ben Roethlisberger(11), Steven Jackson(24), Jared Allen(126), Andy Lee(188), and Vonta Leach(Un) were drafted. This class had talent all over and has the best case against the 07' class as being the best. Unless Manning or Roethlisberger win more Superbowls or put up unGodlike numbers for the rest of their years in the NFL, they aren't entering that best ever debate at Quarterback. Unfortunately for Fitzgerald, Johnson is only 2,000 yards behind him with two years less experience. As for Steven Jackson, he has a shot at being the best ever, but he'll need at the least 3 more solid seasons. Had Sean Taylor not been murdered, he would have been the obvious successor to Ronnie Lott.

What's so spectacular about the 07' class is four of the five players, all drafted within the first 14 picks, are somewhat on pace to be the best ever at their positions. Johnson has all the tools and the ever important gunslinging quarterback to surpass most of Jerry Rice's stats. Peterson came within nine yards for the most rushing yards in a single season and is averaging nearly 1,500 rushing yards a season. You all know Patrick Willis, he has six Pro-Bowl's, six All-Pro's (5 1st team, 1 2nd team) and a complete badass. Revis has an island named after him. Joe Thomas is widely considered the best pass-blocking tackle in the league, he also has picked up six Pro-Bowl's in six seasons and three first team All-Pro's.

If I'm making an All-History team, I'm lining up Johnson opposite of Rice, Revis in the nickel, Willis next to Lewis in the middle of the defense while Peterson and Walter Payton create the most bruising, punishing, and feared running back duo ever.

Maybe I'm crazy, but I feel like eventually everyone will look back at the 2007 draft class and say, "Wow, incredible."

P.S.: Let's not forget this draft also had Marshawn Lynch, Eric Weddle, Jon Beason, Dashon Goldson, Marshall Yanda, Jermon Bushrod, Dwayne Bowe, Joe Staley, and Ryan Kalil. Quite a draft.

This is a FanPost and does not necessarily reflect the views of Niners Nation's writers or editors. It does reflect the views of this particular fan though, which is as important as the views of Niners Nation's writers or editors.

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