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Von Miller Puts 3 Patriots on his List of 5 Toughest Opponents


In the newest issue of The Players’ Tribune, Von Miller offers his list of “The 5 Toughest Guys I’ve Ever Faced.” In case you’re keeping score, his toughest tackle is Trent Williams. His toughest running back is Chris Ivory. The other 60% of his list will be familiar to you:

Toughest Quarterback: Tom Brady
What makes him the best isn’t just his accuracy throwing the ball. His presnap vision is the best I’ve ever seen, bar none. He’s able to predict your play just based off the presnap coverage. You can disguise your look all you want, but he’s still able to move guys around and forecast what’s coming. Brady almost turns the whole game into a seven-on-seven drill because of how fast he’s able to get rid of the ball.

Toughest Tight End: Rob Gronkowski
There’s not a more dominant tight end right now than Gronkowski. But he’s not just dominant as a receiver— he’s the total package. I think his blocking is underrated. This term is almost overused in the media now, but Gronk really is a true game-changer. He’s almost like LeBron James in that his body type and skill set has never been seen before at his position. The NFL has never seen anything like his combination of size, speed and hands. … [T]here’s so many little things that go into a successful play, which is why I have to show some respect to the last man on my list.  

Toughest Head Coach: Bill Belichick

[W]ith Belichick, his genius comes from the fact that he always gameplans based on the personnel he has. He’s had Hall of Famers like Randy Moss, and he’s also had guys who you never heard of before, and no matter what, the Patriots are always contenders. Some of the packages we see from the Patriots, I’ve never seen before on a football field. … I’ve played a lot of football, but there’s still stuff the Patriots do that surprises me.

Let this be a lesson for everyone, everywhere. Not just football fans and agenda-driven media wretches, but people within pro football too. This is how a true NFL superstar conducts himself. Von Miller is, at the very least, one of the five best players in football right now. And game recognizes game. Steel sharpens steel. Or in this case, Valyerian steel sharpens an Elvish blade.

What Von Miller is doing here is giving the Patriots the one thing I demand out of everyone in the NFL. Respect. Simple, respect. I as for nothing more. I’ll accept nothing less. There’s no “Cheatriots” talk out of him like you get from the Ravens. No Terrell Suggs whining that Brady gets all the calls. Nothing about how Gronk is “Glasskowski” like you hear from angry sports talk radio shut ins. Not a word about helmet headsets going out or the Pats defensive lineman shifting is so unfair like we get from Mike Tomlin and Ben Roethlisberger. Just a great player who can appreciate going up against greatness.

I hope Miller doesn’t show up on the stat sheet Sunday. But for sure, I respect him even more than I did when he was curb-stomping the Patriots last year on his way to a Super Bowl MVP.