Philly all-sport power rankings: Fletcher Cox is best of 129 athletes

1. Fletcher Cox, Eagles DT (Last year 2)

With no playoff teams to boast in the city this year, there is really no best team’s best player to kick off this list. But Fletcher Cox has turned into a perrenial Pro Bowl pass-rusher and followed up 9.5 sacks in 2016 with 6.5 in 2016. Sacks don’t tell the full story, as the defensive tackle commanded double teams all year and will be in the heart of his prime in 2017 during his age 26 season.

2. Joel Embiid, Sixers C (Last year 33)

The big man played in only 31 games before a knee injury shut him down but his numbers were eye-popping. In just over 25 minutes per game, Jo Jo averaged 20.2 points, 7.8 rebounds and 2.5 blocks per game. He was on a fast track to Rookie of the Year honors and had a reasonable case to be an All-Star starter. His defense around the rim was the stuff of legend in less than half a season and a healthy Embiid in 2017-18 will be an All-Star candidate right out of the gate.

3. Alshon Jeffery, Eagles WR 

He’s never played a game in Philadelphia but we are already annoiting the former Bears wideout the third best standout in the city. He is big, he is fast. And when healthy, he is a 1,000 yard receiver even on a bad day. He’ll give Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz a target that dreams are made of.

4. Claude Giroux, Flyers C (Last year 1)

Likely playing through a lot of pain this season — one that saw the Flyers win 10 straight games in December but still miss the playoffs — Giroux had a down season by his standards. But he still posted some of the best numbers on his team and, if healthy in 2017-18, will prove that 2016-17 was a blip on the radar and not an early sign of decline.

5. Lane Johnson, Eagles RT (Last year 20)

One only needs to read one stat when assessing the importance of Johnson to the Eagles offense. With him at right tackle, Philly was 5-1 last season. With him suspended due to violating the NFL drug policy, Philly was 2-8. Can’t get much more valuable than that.

6. Jason Peters, Eagles LT (Last year 19)

Peters is a future NFL Hall of Famer and the highest paid player on the Eagles. He seems to have no intention of hanging up his cleats anytime soon at age 35 and is a regular anchor at left tackle on Pro Bowl teams. 

7. Jeremy Hellickson, Phillies, SP (Last year 55)

Hellickson has been a model of consistency on a young Phillies pitching staff. He fills the roll of slump-buster perfectly as a level-headed master of acquiring quality starts. Don’t be surprised if he is moved before the July trade deadline — should his production continue.

8. Carson Wentz, Eagles QB

He’ll be No. 1 on this list very soon — possibly by the end of 2017. With the aformentioned Jeffery, newly acquired Torrey Smith (and two draft picks) as well as Zach Ertz and Darren Sproles, Wentz could have a breakout sophomore year.

9. Jordan Hicks, Eagles LB (Last year 10)

The quarterback of the Eagles defense, Hicks has shown he is a steady hand in the middle of the Eagles D and a turnover machine. In about a season and a half of NFL games, the middle linebacker has 135 tackles, seven interceptions and a pair of sacks.

10. Zach Ertz, Eagles TE (Last year 7)

We are always waiting for Ertz to play to his potential, and the inconsistency bug seems to be keeping him from making the leap to elite tight end. Over the last two seasons he’s averaged 76.5 catches for just around 840 yards and three touchdowns per campaign. 

11. Jakub Voracek, Flyers RW (Last year 4)

Perhaps fittingly, at No. 11 just beneath Ertz, the Flyers’ oft-scoring winger is just as inconsistent as his football playing counterpart. Voracek has the ability to change a hockey game all by himself but sometimes falls into scoreless streaks like many other Flyers forwards.

12. Brandon Graham, Eagles DE (Last year 36)

Graham had a break out 2016, seemingly darting all over the field and accumulating a career-high in tackles and second best ever sack total (5.5). He was a borderling Pro Bowl performer and will once again be a key member of the Eagles front seven.

13. Odubel Herrera, Phillies OF (Last year 39)

Herrera was the best hitter on the Phillies a season ago and has been solid but not stellar in 2017. He has been much better working out of the three-hole in the lineup and is, as always, a dynamic personality in the Phils clubhouse.

14. Malcolm Jenkins, Eagles S (Last year 3)

The Eagles’ veteran safety has become a staple in the Philadelphia community as well as an outspoken locker room presence. He had two pick-sixes in an (alternate) Pro Bowl year for the Eagles in 2016.

15. Rodney McLeod, Eagles S

The other half of Philly’s safety tandem, McLeod is another reliable member of the secondary. He’ll likely be even better in his second season with the Eagles after signing with the team last offseason.

16. Cesar Hernandez, Phillies 2B (Last year 63)

Hernandez, once seen as a stopgap while Phillies prospects prepared to make it to the majors, has really found his groove in the lead-off spot for the Phils in 2017 and is among their best hitters thus far.

17. Dario Saric, Sixers PF

After Embiid was shut down for the season, the Rookie of the Year buzz didn’t decimate in Philly. In fact just the opposite, as blue-collar and hustling Saric became a fan favorite and posted numbers worthy of winning the award himself in 2017.

18. Torrey Smith, Eagles WR

Smith won’t quite fill the shoes left open when the Eagles cut speedster DeSean Jackson, but given a third contract with a third team the veteran will be a huge asset for Philly spreading the field alongside Jeffery.

19. Derrick Barnett, Eagles DE

The Eagles’ first overall pick earns a top 20 spot due to the importance of his selection at No. 14 overall. He has the chance to be a big piece of the Birds’ defense for a decade.

20. Jared Eickhoff, Phillies SP (Last year 48)

Quality starts have become synonymous with Eickhoff, who has used his curveball and control of the strike zone to emerge as a building block for the Phillies starting five.

Our list continues:

21. Brayden Schenn, Flyers LW

22. Wayne Simmonds, Flyers RW

23. Shayne Gostisbehere, Flyers D

24. Jordan Matthews, Eagles WR

25. Ben Simmons, Sixers SF​

26. Freddy Galvis, SS, Phillies

27. Brandon Brooks, Eagles G

28. Ivan Provorov, Flyers D

29. Travis Konecny, Flyers C

30. Maikel Franco, 3B, Phillies

31. Aaron Altherr, OF, Phillies

32. Hector Neris, Phillies RP

33. Joaquin Benoit, Phillies RP

34. T.J. McConnell, Sixers PG

35. Sidney Jones, Eagles CB

36. Darren Sproles, Eagles RB

37. Andres Blanco, Phillies IF

38. Michael Saunders, Phillies OF

39. Brent Celek, Eagles TE

40. Vinny Curry, Eagles DE

41. Jon Dorembos, Eagles LS

42. Howie Kendrick, Phillies OF

43. Timmy Jernigan, Eagles DT

44. Rasul Douglas, Eagles CB

45. Sean Couturier, Flyers C

46. Jalen Mills, Eagles CB

47. Jason Kelce, Eagles C

48. Michal Neuvirth, Flyers G

49. Aaron Nola, Phillies SP

50. Vincent Velasquez, Phillies SP

51. Donnie Jones, Eagles P

52. Tommy Joseph, Phillies 1B

53. Mychal Kendricks, Eagles LB

54. Matt Read, Flyers RW

55. Zach Eflin, Phillies SP

56. Daniel Nava, Phillies OF

57. Dorial Green-Beckham, Eagles WR

58. Caleb Sturgis, Eagles K

59. Michael Del Zotto, Flyers​ D

60. Nigel Bradham, Eagles LB

61. Robert Covington, Sixers SF

62. Chance Warmack, Eagles G

63. Ryan Mathews, Eagles RB

64. Isaac Seumalo, Eagles G

65. Wendell Smallwood, Eagles RB

66. Stefen Wisniewski, C

67. Radko Gudas, Flyers​ D

68. Mack Hollins, Eagles WR

69. Shelton Gibson, Eagles WR

70. Patrick Robinson, Eagles CB

71. Jaylen Watkins, Eagles S

72. Nick Cousins, Flyers​ C

73. Chris Maragos, Eagles S

74. Nick Pivetta, Phillies SP

75. Nick Foles, Eagles QB

76. Matt McGloin, Eagles QB

77. Halapoulivaati Vaitai, Eagles T

78. Nate Gerry, Eagles LB

79. Donnell Pumphrey, Eagles RB

80. Cameron Rupp, Phillies C

81. Richaun Holmes, Sixers C

82. Taylor Hart, Eagles DT

83. Beau Allen, Eagles DT

84. Elijah Qualls, Eagles DT

85. Jordan Weal, Flyers​ C

86. Ron Brooks, Eagles CB

87. Trey Burton, Eagles TE

88. Pat Neshak, Phillies RP

89. Pierre-Edouard Bellemare, Flyers​ C

90. Roman Lyubimov, Flyers​ C

91. Chris Long, Eagles DE

92. Michael Raffl, Flyers​ RW

93. Steve Mason, Flyers​ G

94. Jahlil Okafor, Sixers C

95. Valtteri Filppua, Flyers​  C

96. Chris VandeVelde, Flyers​ RW

97. Mark Leiter, Phillies RP

98. Clay Buchholz, Phillies SP

99. Andrew McDonald, Flyers​ D

100. Allen Barbre, Eagles RT​

101. Jeanmar Gomez, Phillies RP

102. Dale Weise, Flyers​ RW

103. Nick Schultz, Flyers​ D

104. Najee Goode, Eagles LB

105. Marcus Smith, Eagles LB

106. Brandon Manning, Flyers​ D

107. Jerryd Bayless, Sixers PG

108. Terrence Brooks, Eagles S

109. Andrew Knapp, Phillies C

110. Matt Tobin, Eagles G

111. Joe Walker, Eagles ILB

112. Nik Stauskas, Sixers SG

113. Byron Marshall, Eagles RB

114. Gerald Henderson, Sixers SG

115. C.J. Smith, Eagles CB

116. Nelson Agholor, Eagles WR

117. Justin Anderson, Sixers SG

118. Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot, Sixers SF

119. Paul Turner, Eagles WR

120. Bryce Treggs, Eagles WR

121. Terrell Watson, Eagles RB​

122. Aaron Grymes, Eagles CB

123. Kamu Grugier-Hill, Eagles OLB​

124. Rasheed Bailey, Eagles WR

125. Joely Rodriguez, Phillies RP

126. Josh Andrews, Eagles G

127. Destiny Vaeao, Eagles DT

128. Edubray Ramos, Phillies RP

129. Shawn Long, Sixers PF

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