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Who is the "next big superstar"?


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As the title says - who is the next guy to hit superstar status. Either "face of the league" or consensus elite superstar. I'm talking a transformative type of season that puts a player on the historic map and unquestioned pantheon of the NFL

Some examples (personal opinion)

2018: Patrick Mahomes, Aaron Donald
2019: Lamar Jackson, Christian McCaffrey
2020: Derrick Henry

In my opinion, even those a couple were stars before those seasons (Donald, Henry), these were the seasons that vaulted them into that top stratosphere

Who is it is 2021?

I feel like Allen, Herbert, Burrow are real contenders at QB. Maybe an AJ Brown or DK have the potential to vault themselves into NFLs WR1 status for years to come with an insane season

On the defensive side, maybe a Myles Garrett putting up a 20 sack season?

What are the top names on your list

 

Edited by Tk3
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4 minutes ago, Blackstar12 said:

I'd argue Quenton Nelson is already a "big star" and belongs on that list. 3 All-pros, only 3 sacks allowed in 3 years.

I don't disagree. By nature, it's hard for an OL to end up on that sort of trajectory. I feel like in the last 20 years Joe Thomas has been the entire list. Nelson definitely is the guy who feels like he can join him, but I'm not sure that a single season or this season specifically can be the thing that vaults him. You're completely right, I just think OL works differently

 

2 minutes ago, MikeT14 said:

If the leap others guy have made in similar situations is any indication, Chase Young might be a prime example.

Agreed. Chase Young, Myles Garrett, Nick Bosa, even Bradley Chubb feel like they have that "quantum leap" potential to jump to that 20 sack (or close to 20) type of season and undisputed top pass rusher status

 

1 minute ago, vikingsrule said:

Jefferson has the makings of a super star. 

Agreed. Quite a few young WRs have those makings. Curious if any of them are able to separate themselves. I think at worst Jefferson ends up in that "top 10 WR" pack that we sort of already have seen formed

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1 minute ago, Tk3 said:

Agreed. Chase Young, Myles Garrett, Nick Bosa, even Bradley Chubb feel like they have that "quantum leap" potential to jump to that 20 sack (or close to 20) type of season and undisputed top pass rusher status

I'll be super happy if Young makes that Garrett, J Bosa jump to 13+ sacks in year 2, if not more!

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- Herbert and Kyler come to mind (IMO, Allen is there). 

- RBs Jonathan Taylor, Cam Akers and Antonio Gipson are guys who can take that spot.

- CeeDee Lamb will get a lot of run with Dak at QB, look for him to get run as a darkhorse All Pro option.

- Budda Baker already got paid, but isn't really a well known name to the casual fan, that changes.

- AJ Epenesa should get an expanded role in Buffalo, and he has the ability to be a 10+ sack guy who gets significant attention.

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Trey Lance

-Extremely marketable

-Plays in a huge media market

-Plays for a team that already has the pieces in place for a deep playoff run

The dominoes are all in place for him. He just needs to perform to tip them over. 

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9 minutes ago, Starless said:

Trey Lance

-Extremely marketable

-Plays in a huge media market

-Plays for a team that already has the pieces in place for a deep playoff run

The dominoes are all in place for him. He just needs to perform to tip them over. 

If he starts out of the gates, I could see this coming. But, I also think Jimmy Garropolo isn't going to give up his gig easily, Lance has to look polished immediately to get the start.

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Just now, ET80 said:

If he starts out of the gates, I could see this coming. But, I also think Jimmy Garropolo isn't going to give up his gig easily, Lance has to look polished immediately to get the start.

From the reporting coming out of minicamp, sounds like he's pretty polished already.

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32 minutes ago, Tk3 said:

I don't disagree. By nature, it's hard for an OL to end up on that sort of trajectory. I feel like in the last 20 years Joe Thomas has been the entire list. Nelson definitely is the guy who feels like he can join him, but I'm not sure that a single season or this season specifically can be the thing that vaults him. You're completely right, I just think OL works differently

 

 

He's already changing the narrative around OL. He's not only at or near the top of OL rankings but very high among all active players. If he continues stacking first team all pros his trajectory is that of Joe Thomas. He's only 25.

Edited by Blackstar12
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11 minutes ago, Starless said:

From the reporting coming out of minicamp, sounds like he's pretty polished already.

Yes, because OTAs are always a good indicator of rookies being ready for the NFL...especially QBs.

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7 minutes ago, 43M said:

Yes, because OTAs are always a good indicator of rookies being ready for the NFL...especially QBs.

We shall see. FWIW I don't think him starting out of the gate is even a prerequisite. He could come in at midseason and blow the doors off the league the way Marino did. 

Also, I don't even necessarily think Lance will be a huge success in the NFL. I'm just saying that he has the most chips stacked in his favor to be the next 'face of the league' if he does. 

Edited by Starless
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I think Darren Waller is capable of having a ridiculous season that sees the perception of him elevate into the Travis Kelce tier. Which I would consider super star status. What Waller did the final 7 weeks last year tells me that he may have even another level to his game that very few in the history of the game have ever displayed. He has put up elite production for his position the past 2 seasons, but last year in the final 7 games he had 54 receptions, 764 Yards, and 5 TDs (projects out to 131 receptions, 1855 yards, and 12 TDs over an entire season now with 17 games). And no, I'm not saying I expect THAT production necessarily but I do think he can put up a 1400 yard type year. Last season also Included only the 6th 200 yard receiving game by a TE ever in NFL history, another game of 150, and in 4 out of 7 he had 112 yards or more. It was (I believe I read) the most productive 6 or 7 game stretch by anyone at his position in the history of the NFL. He was straight up unguardable, in line, as a big slot, and split out wide.

And really it makes sense when you consider just how new he is to the TE position. He's only played TE for less than a handful of seasons, and he has shown significant improvement every year since being signed by the Raiders and made the transition to TE. He's still learning, he's still smack dab in the middle of his athletic prime without nearly as many hits on his body as most 28 year old 6+ year veterans, he's still playing in a system that has been able to utilize his unique skill set being able to line up literally anywhere and dominate, and athletic traits. He will still be the focal point of the passing game, and really probably the player that makes the entire offense go. 

I do believe Travis Kelce fits the mold of the topic in being a super star personality and has that standing among most fans and media. Waller hasn't been far behind him production wise the past 2 seasons, and I think it's entirely possible we see a Darren Waller this season that was even better than the great player he has been the past couple of years. There's certainly an argument to be made that the Raiders will have to be a winning team to help elevate him there, and that is obviously up for debate, but I don't think that's nearly as big a deal for players at positions like RB, TE, WR, etc as it is for a QB making the leap to "super star."

Edited by Mr Raider
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For the Steelers...if TJ Watt isnt already a big superstar, he is on the list.    If he wasnt dropped back into coverage and run support so much, he would already have a 20 sack season...which I guess is the arbitrary requirement for being a defensive superstar.

Both Dionte Johnson and Chase Claypool have the overall talent to be superstar WRs, but I dont think either will put it all together.

Beyond the Steelers....Chase Young, Brian Burns, Justin Hebert and Jaire Alexander spring to mind.

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