METRO TOP 10
Staff writer Jim Paulsen's thoughts on the top 10 teams in the metro area going into Week 1.
1. Eden Prairie: The Eagles have more talent back than any team in the metro. Jr. QB Cole Kramer is a star in the making.
2. Lakeville North: 2016 Mr. Football winner Wade Sullivan is gone, but there's big bodies up front and young talent behind them.
3. Totino-Grace: Losing 23 seniors will take a toll but don't expect the defending 6A champion Eagles to fall very far.
4. Cretin-Derham Hall: Could this be the year the Raiders return to greatness?
5. Blaine: Southpaw QB Connor Melton and WR Byron Bynum are one of the metro's most potent combinations.
6. Maple Grove: With Brad Davison graduated, the Crimson's focus returns to defense, coach Matt Lombardi's calling card.
7. Edina: Don't expect the Hornets to be flashy, but they will be physical. That will be more than enough.
8. Minnetonka: The Skippers will rely on a rugged defense, led by linebackers Ty Barron and James Van Horne.
9. Rosemount: The starting backfield is inexperienced, but the line, led by Jacob Smith and Ian Bass, is not.
10. Prior Lake: DT Zach Whaley has the size needed for the position (6-4, 275) but moves like he's 60 pounds lighter.
Other class top teams
5A: Elk River, Cooper
4A: Benilde-St. Margaret's, Holy Angels
3A: St. Croix Lutheran
2A: Minneapolis North