Two Players To Know From Every Team In The 2022 NFL Playoffs

·12 min read

The NFL playoffs are here! That means it is time for you to brush up on the superstars who will make it one of the most competitive roads to the Super Bowl in recent memory!

CBS

Here are the two best NON-QUARTERBACK players from every team to watch in the 2022 NFL playoffs:

1.Derrick Henry, running back, Tennessee Titans

Helmetless Derrick Henry in white Titans jersey

The "King of Running Backs" returns! Henry went down with an injury in Week 8, but before then, he was having an MVP season. He totaled 937 rushing yards with 10 touchdowns in just 8 games. He is the closest thing to LeBron James playing in the NFL... He is an absolute tank running the football!

If he can stay healthy and if the Titans can take early leads, there is no stopping them from hoisting the Lombardi Trophy.

Abbie Parr / Getty Images

2.Kevin Byard, safety, Tennessee Titans

Helmetless Kevin Byard in a blue Titans jersey

Without a doubt, the most underrated player in the NFL every season. Byard is an elite talent in the secondary and a big reason for the Titans' success on defense. He has 5 interceptions this season and 13 pass deflections.

Good luck trying to throw against this guy, because he rarely misses an opportunity to make a big play.

Wesley Hitt / Getty Images

3.Davante Adams, wide receiver, Green Bay Packers

Helmetless Davante Adams in a white Packers uniform

As a Patriots fan, I always hated the talk about Aaron Rodgers not having enough weapons around him. Most teams would kill for an elite wide receiver like Adams, and like most seasons, he has been unstoppable this year, too. He accounts for 1,498 receiving yards of Rodgers' 3,977 passing yards. That's about 38% of his completed passes.

His total of 117 catches is the second-most in the NFL, and expect him to make even more in the playoffs.

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4.A.J. Dillon, running back, Green Bay Packers

AJ Dillon in a green and yellow Packers uniform

It's been a sneaky good year for Dillon. Credit an efficient passing game, which really opens things up for the young athlete out of Boston College. He only has 740 yards on 173 carries, but is averaging 4.3 yards a touch after splitting carries with equally talented back Aaron Jones. That's what you need from a bruising back like Dillon.

If teams try to take away Adams, look to No. 28 to take the load to help move the ball down the field for the Packer offense.

John Fisher / Getty Images

5.Creed Humphrey, center, Kansas City Chiefs

Helmetless Creed Humphrey in a red Chiefs uniform

It's hard to believe that a rookie could be the best at his position already, but Humphrey might be closer than any other rookie. (Who am I kidding, this rookie class was stacked!) Offensive linemen don't have a lot of visual stats, but he is helping the Chiefs find their groove offensively and does not let many past him.

The Chiefs' O-line really let them down in last year's Super Bowl defeat so expect Humphrey and company to step it up.

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6.Chris Jones, defensive tackle, Kansas City Chiefs

Helmetless Chris Jones in a red Chiefs

Other than maybe the "Honey Badger" Tyrann Mathieu, Chris Jones has been the biggest defensive cornerstone on this impressive Chiefs run. Nine sacks are looked at as a down year for him (rolling my eyes). Either way, he is the first player offensive coordinators have to game-plan for or they're in a world of trouble.

Look to see if they keep Jones inside, where he successfully creates pressure against interior offensive linemen.

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7.Cooper Kupp, wide receiver, Los Angeles Rams

Cooper Kupp in a Rams uniform

Meet this season's Triple Crown–winning wide receiver in the NFL. Kupp finished the regular season as the leading receiver in yards, catches, and touchdowns (138 receptions, 1,829 yards, and 15 touchdowns). Probably Offensive Player of the Year, Kupp has had the gift of health this season and has shown he can be Matthew Stafford's go-to guy in their first year playing together.

Kupp was injured during the last Super Bowl run for the Rams, so his presence will be a delightful element to watch.

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8.Aaron Donald, defensive tackle, Los Angeles Rams

Helmetless Aaron Donald in a white Rams jersey

I thought about adding some interesting playmakers on the Rams' offense, and then I remembered Aaron Donald might track me down and tackle me through my desk if he sees he is not on this list. He's a bad, scary man with 12.5 sacks and 4 forced fumbles.

Maybe the best non-QB to play football over the last decade. I mean that. He could retire now and still be in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

Christian Petersen / Getty Images

9.Ja'Marr Chase, wide receiver, Cincinnati Bengals

Helmetless Ja'Marr Chase in an orange Bengals uniform

Rookie of the Year candidate Chase looks like he will be the X-Factor for the Bengals in the playoffs. If he can get going, he can recreate the magic he and college teammate Joe Burrow made at LSU when they won the National Championship.

He finished the regular season with 1,429 yards and 13 touchdowns while averaging 18.1 yards per catch!

Dylan Buell / Getty Images

10.Trey Hendrickson, defensive end, Cincinnati Bengals

Helmetless Trey Hendrickson in a white Bengals jersey

In my opinion, the most under-the-radar signing this offseason. Hendrickson has been the sack-getter for the Bengals' front seven, recording 14 sacks! If healthy, expect him to disrupt quarterbacks in the playoffs.

A lot of talent on this young Bengals squad, but they will need a guy like Hendrickson to make key third down pressures if they want to win a single game.

Chris Unger / Getty Images

11.Tristan Wirfs, offensive tackle, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Helmetless Tristan Wirfs in a white Buccaneers uniform

Wirfs ended up being an invaluable draft selection last season. And when your quarterback is old-timer Tom Brady, you need to protect him against some of the best pass rushers the NFC has to offer. Wirfs has been great once again on a beaten-up Tampa squad, but can he help them repeat this season?

Think about that: This young player doesn't know what it feels like to be eliminated in the NFL.

James Gilbert / Getty Images

12.Mike Evans, wide receiver, Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Helmetless Mike Evans in a white Buccaneers jersey

Evans is the last line of def...offense for the Buccaneers. Health has been the biggest enemy of the Buccaneers this season, something they hardly had to deal with last season. Evans has been great as always with another thousand-yard season.

That's his eighth straight season with at least 1,000 yards.

Nic Antaya / Getty Images

13.Stefon Diggs, wide receiver, Buffalo Bills

Stefon Diggs in a blue Bills jersey

Arguably the best receiver in the game, Diggs has been the most consistent weapon for the Bills and he will need to have big games for the Bills to finally make the Super Bowl this century. He finished the year with 1,144 yards and 98 catches.

Only nine touchdowns (which is still Top 10 in the NFL), but defenses are really focused on him, thus opening other things up for the Bills' offense.

Joshua Bessex / Getty Images

14.Ed Oliver, defensive tackle, Buffalo Bills

Ed Oliver in a blue Bills jersey

An anchor in a loaded Buffalo defense, Oliver isn't a guy who is going to put up a bunch of statistics. Doesn't matter. He makes an impact on the line and, in a way, is a general out there who can manipulate the gaps. He can be a nightmare for offensive coordinators.

He has 4 sacks and 10 tackles for loss this season.

Timothy T Ludwig / Getty Images

15.DeMarcus Lawrence, defensive end, Dallas Cowboys

DeMarcus Lawrence in a white Cowboys jersey

If you are looking for veteran leadership on the Cowboys, look no further than D-Law. He already has an interception return for a touchdown and five tackles for loss since coming back from injury. When healthy, Lawrence is incredibly impactful on the defensive line so his presence will matter in the playoffs.

His snap count ranges between 50% and 60%, so look for big No. 90 on the field for big plays.

Richard Rodriguez / Getty Images

16.Micah Parsons, linebacker, Dallas Cowboys

Helmetless Micah Parsons in a white Cowboys jersey

There should be no discussion... Defensive Rookie of the Year: Micah Parsons.

13 sacks! 84 tackles! 20 tackles for loss! This man's a rookie! He has been a blast to watch on the Cowboys, and with the help of defensive coordinator Dan Quinn, this defense might be built for a Super Bowl run.

Richard Rodriguez / Getty Images

17.J.C. Jackson, cornerback, New England Patriots

J.C. Jackson catching a football

One of the best cornerbacks over the past three seasons, "Mr. INT" has stepped in as the Patriots' No. 1 corner and hasn't looked back. He tallied up eight interceptions this season and has been virtually a lockdown corner.

Watch Jackson and Bills wideout Diggs go to war in the first game Saturday night.

Harry How / Getty Images

18.Trent Brown, offensive tackle, New England Patriots

Trent Brown poses for the camera in a Patriots jersey

The last time Trent Brown graced a Patriots uniform in the playoffs, they won the whole thing with an elite running game. History looks to be repeating itself since the Patriots lean hard on their run game. With an injury to Patriots left tackle Isaiah Wynn, expect a lot of runs to go Brown's way.

By the way, Brown is 6'8", so you can't miss him.

Timothy T. Ludwig / Getty Images

19.Isaiah Simmons, linebacker, Arizona Cardinals

Helmetless Isaiah Simmons in a red Cardinals jersey

One of those defensive guys who can be found all over the field throughout a game. A playmaker and one of the most important guys for the Cardinals on the defensive side of the ball. He finished with 70 solo tackles this season.

In 6 games this season, he played 100% of the defensive snaps, proving he is very, VERY present on the field.

Michael Reaves / Getty Images

20.A.J. Green, wide receiver, Arizona Cardinals

Helmetless A.J. Green in a white Cardinals uniform

Obviously, DeAndre Hopkins is a big X-Factor, but A.J. Green is going to be important against great defenses. Green is not the best receiver on the team but he might have to be if the Cardinals want any chance of winning a game against a strong NFC.

With 848 yards, he was responsible for 37 first downs, so look for him to help quarterback Kyler Murray move the chains.

Steph Chambers / Getty Images

21.George Kittle, tight end, San Francisco 49ers

Helmetless George Kittle in a white 49ers uniform

The 49ers have been sneaky good this season and after a big comeback win in Week 18 against their rival Rams, they have a shot to keep surprising people.

Enter Kittle. This has not been the best year for Kittle, but the playoffs are a brand-new ball game. No matter who is quarterbacking for San Fran, Kittle will need to step up his game and make plays for the offense. The NFC has a lot of offensive firepower so be ready for some shootouts.

Abbie Parr / Getty Images

22.Fred Warner, linebacker, San Francisco 49ers

Fred Warner

Personally, one of my favorite players in the NFL. The prototypical inside linebacker, Warner had 137 combined tackles this season, and when compared to his 79 solo tackles, it shows he is the perfect "cleanup" hitter.

Whether it is in coverage or against the run, look to No. 54 as a potential playmaker on close first down calls.

Justin Casterline / Getty Images

23.Darren Waller, tight end, Las Vegas Raiders

Darren Waller smiles in a black Raiders uniform

Darren Waller's story is as great as his playing on the field. He missed six games this season due to injury but when he plays, he is Derek Carr's favorite target. And then there is Hunter Renfrow, Carr's new favorite toy since Waller has missed playing time. The attention is now away from the versatile tight end so some teams might fall asleep on him.

It's really a pick your poison: Get beat by Waller or get beat by Renfrow.

Chris Unger / Getty Images

24."Mad" Maxx Crosby, defensive end, Las Vegas Raiders

Helmetless Maxx Crosby in a white Raiders jersey

A diamond in the rough prospect ended up being exactly that: a diamond. Mad Max finished the year with eight sacks and plenty of pressures to make any quarterback feel uneased (30 QB hits to be exact).

There is a nice mix of veteran presence and young blood in the front seven, so if all systems are go, watch out for the black and silver crew...especially big No. 98.

Justin Casterline / Getty Images

25.DeVonta Smith, wide receiver, Philadelphia Eagles

DeVonta Smith in an Eagles uniform catching football

Another great rookie on this list. From Heisman Trophy to helping the Eagles to the playoffs, Smith is a great option for quarterback Jalen Hurts. He finished his first season with 916 yards and 5 touchdowns. Although his play has been up and down throughout the season, Smith will be a big part of this offense if they want to reach the Super Bowl. Going against a banged-up Tampa Bay Buccaneers' defense, expect Smith to make a splash in the Wild Card round.

Mitchell Leff / Getty Images

26.Dallas Goedert, tight end, Philadelphia Eagles

Helmetless Dallas Goedert yelling

The Philadelphia Eagles need points if they want any chance at beating the Tampa Bay Buccaneers so the passing game is going to be crucial. Goedert has really come on at the end of the season by tallying 100+ yard games 2 times in the past 4 games.

Mitchell Leff / Getty Images

27.T.J. Watt, linebacker, Pittsburgh Steelers

T.J. Watt in a black Steelers jersey

The Steelers aren't done yet. What a wild season they have had, but no one has been more consistent than Watt. He tied the NFL sack record at 22.5, and 5 forced fumbles.

Not too many players have a historic season like him and squeak into the playoffs, so thank the football gods we get to see him test the Kansas City Chiefs in what is sure to be a highlight matchup.

Joe Sargent / Getty Images

28.Najee Harris, running back, Pittsburgh Steelers

Najee Harris smiles in Steelers uniform

Yup, another rookie. Harris hasn't necessarily blown the roof off like a Parsons or Chase, but he has been a reliable source of offense for the Steelers. Let's not sugarcoat it... Big Ben Roethlisberger is a dinosaur out there, so look for them to lean on Harris and the run game.

He finished with 1,200 yards (Never would have guessed. That's how under the radar he has been.) and 10 total touchdowns.

Joe Sargent / Getty Images

Who do you think will be a breakout player in the playoffs? Who is winning the whole thing?! Comment below!