New England Patriots

Feb 3, 2019; Atlanta, GA: New England Patriots cornerback Stephon Gilmore celebrates after winning Super Bowl LIII against the Los Angeles Rams at Mercedes-Benz Stadium. (Christopher Hanewinckel-USA TODAY Sports)

By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com

After delivering an All-Pro season for the Super Bowl champion Patriots, Stephon Gilmore has finally made his first appearance on the NFL’s annual Top 100 Players list. He checks in at No. 22.

Gilmore may end up being the highest-ranked cornerback on the list, finishing ahead of the Jaguars’ Jalen Ramsey (No. 27) and the Cardinals’ Patrick Peterson (No. 46), among others. Gilmore was named a First Team All-Pro by the Associated Press, Pro Football Focus, and the Pro Football Writers of America.

Patriots quarterback Tom Brady is confirmed, unsurprisingly, to be in the top-20 players once again. Julian Edelman and Devin McCourty previously cracked the list at 90th and 89th, respectively. Gilmore finishes one spot ahead of Browns receiver Odell Beckham Jr.

Here’s what I believe is the top-20 remaining players, in alphabetical order.

Giants RB Saquon Barkley
Patriots QB Tom Brady
Saints QB Drew Brees
Raiders WR Antonio Brown
Rams DT Aaron Donald
Cowboys RB Ezekiel Elliott
Rams RB Todd Gurley
Chiefs WR Tyreek Hill
Texans WR DeAndre Hopkins
Falcons WR Julio Jones
Saints RB Alvin Kamara
Colts QB Andrew Luck
Bears DE Khalil Mack
Chiefs QB Patrick Mahomes
Broncos LB Von Miller
Chargers QB Philip Rivers
Packers QB Aaron Rodgers
Saints WR Michael Thomas
Seahawks LB Bobby Wagner
Texans DE J.J. Watt

We’ll see where Brady ends up. But it’s certainly a much-deserved recognition for Gilmore, who played like the best cornerback in the NFL and got rewarded accordingly. He capped his season with a momentous interception late in the fourth quarter of Super Bowl LIII, which the Patriots won 13-3 over the Rams.

Gilmore has picked up right where he left off in 2019 training camp, too. The Patriots defense has a chance to be really, really good, and Gilmore would be one of its anchors.

Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at matthew.dolloff@bbgi.com.