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San Francisco 49ers Most Underrated Players

As would be expected at this point in the NFL "offseason" media folks are looking for a variety of different angles to discuss the most popular sports league in America. While the NFL looks to shoot itself in the foot with this lockout, we can only hope the nonsense will end soon so we can move back to discussing the things that really matter: like how long until Andy Lee's jersey is retired!

ESPN and CBS Sports have both been putting together lists of underrated players. ESPN and Mike Sando decided that Isaac Sopoaga qualifies as the most underrated 49ers player. It's not surprising he's on this list as he quietly does his business. Last month we had some discussion on whether Sopoaga was overrated, underrated, or just plain rated. He's a guy that doesn't get a lot of chatter, but when he does it seems like people either think he's really overrated or really underrated and not much in the middle.

Rather than discuss that, I thought we'd look at Pete Prisco's rundown of underrated players (tip of the cap to Stampede Blue for pointing out this article). He posted Michael Crabtree as overrated but we can save that discussion for another day. His choice for the most underrated member of the 49ers as guard Mike Iupati:

He was a brutish force for the 49ers as a rookie last season. He could be on his way to Hawaii in 2011.

That's not exactly extensive analysis on why Iupati is underrated, but obviously he likes him heading into 2011. I'd imagine most 49ers fans enjoy watching Iupati handle his business. He's got areas to improve but is there anybody that isn't a fan of Iupati at this point? Can Iupati really be counted as underrated or would he mostly qualify as underrated for the national media? I could see why Sando wouldn't list him as most underrated given his close following of the NFC West, whereas Pete Prisco provides primarily national coverage.

So if Iupati underrated after only one season of football?