Record Books: All-Silver team

Peyton Manning, Antonio Gates and Terrell Owens have been some of the most watched players this year. Each player has been a key component to have their teams in the playoffs. These selections have been selected to the All-Silver team creating a new surge of "NFL Stars".

It has been the most remarkable of seasons for the most remarkable of quarterbacks.

Peyton Manning has been among the elite quarterbacks in the league for the last four years. But this year, Manning has gone above and beyond all previous standards for quarterbacks.

As a result, he headlines the eighth annual All-Silver teams. As you may recall, the All-Silver team represent the best quarterback, the two best running backs, two best wideouts, the top tight end and the top kicker in the business.

Most years, the race at quarterback is tight and it usually goes to a quarterback who has some swiftness of foot. Those rushing touchdowns usually make the difference.

But not in 2005. Manning has been spectacular the entire season. Multiple TD passes have been the rule since the start of the season and the only week he failed to throw at least two TD passes was in the Colts Week 15 20 10 over the Ravens. He threw just one as he was chasing Dan Marino's record.

That mark came in Week 16 against the Chargers in the most dramatic of ways. The record-setter was a pass to WR Brandon Stokley as the receiver ran to the post. It allowed Indianapolis to tie the score before Mike Vanderjagt won it with a field goal in overtime.

Through 16 weeks, Manning has thrown 49 TD passes and had six 300 plus yard games. In a five-week stretch from late October through the month of November, Manning threw 24 TD passes. No quarterback has ever been so hot for so long.

Joining Manning in the backfield are fantasy studs LaDainian Tomlinson of San Diego and Shaun Alexander of Seattle. Had Priest Holmes stayed healthy, he surely would have made the All-Silver team once again, but that was not about to happen.

Tomlinson has turned into the most consistent running back in the league. He has scored at least one rushing touchdown in 12 consecutive games as the Chargers head into their season finale against the porous Chiefs. Tomlinson has run for 17 touchdowns and has had six 100-yard games this year. He has one receiving touchdown and has proven he is a threat to score from anywhere on the field.

Tomlinson will probably be a major fantasy threat for another 10 years. Five years from now, he will probably start to slow down, but he is bull strong and as tough as any running back in the league. Look for Tomlinson to continue to dominate for years to come.

Alexander is clearly a touchdown machine for the Seahawks. Going into the season finale, he has run for 15 scores and has had seven 100-yard games. He also has four more touchdowns as a receiver. He may be the ideal fantasy running back because he appears to be super motivated by the idea of scoring touchdowns. It is as if Alexander picked himself for his own fantasy team. The Seahawks may be an inconsistent team, but Alexander can score at any time.

Terrell Owens promised to breathe new life into the Philadelphia offense this year and he did that. Even though he got hurt in the Week 15 win over the Cowboys, Owens scored 14 receiving touchdowns and had seven 100 yard games. Owens has had four TDS of 40 yards or more and he gave the Eagles the ability to score form any where on the field at any time.

Joining Owens is the surprising Muhsin Muhammad, who became the Panthers' go-to receiver when Steve Smith went down early in the season. Muhammad has always been an outstanding possession receiver because he combined great hands with tremendous physical strength that enable him to win the battle with most defensive backs. This year, Muhammad has shown the ability to take it to the house. He has 14 touchdowns and seven 100-yard games.

If Muhammad is a shocker on the All-Silver team, than what in the world is San Diego TE Antonio Gates doing there? The former Kent State basketball star has become the key difference maker for the revitalized Chargers with 13 touchdowns, a total no other tight end has ever reached. He may not ever get that high again, but he should approach double-digits because of his strength, toughness and athleticism.

There's usually one position that goes to one of the preseason fantasy favorites and that's place-kicker. Take your pick from Adam Vinatieri, Mike Vanderjagt and David Akers - and one member of that trio will usually walk away with top kicker honors. This year it's Vinatieri, who has 138 points and has made 31-of-33 FG attempts this year. Vinatieri is amazingly consistent, having made 11-of-12 attempts from 40-49 yards. What else would you expect from a kicker who has provided the winning points in two of the last three Super Bowls.

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