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Players Who Could Surprise in 2022


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Now that we have finished the draft and our initial UDFA signings I wanted to get some thoughts on what players that were already on our roster will be primed for a big jump in year 2 assuming they stay healthy.  My two candidates:

1.  RB Jermar Jefferson-He flashed a little bit before getting injured.  He was fully healthy going into the off-season so he will be in better shape.  My hope is that he gets his weight up to about 225 Lbs.  He is listed at 5'10.  That would give us a sort of "bowling ball" RB we really need.

2.  CB Mark Gilbert--He had a pretty bad hip injury early in his career.  He has good length and size.  He was brought in in the middle of the season and played surprisingly well in the snaps that he had.  I could see him maybe becoming a S/CB hybrid player and playing a bigger role that is expected at this point.

Who else could be surprise break-out players?

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2 hours ago, Just Want A Title said:

Now that we have finished the draft and our initial UDFA signings I wanted to get some thoughts on what players that were already on our roster will be primed for a big jump in year 2 assuming they stay healthy.  My two candidates:

1.  RB Jermar Jefferson-He flashed a little bit before getting injured.  He was fully healthy going into the off-season so he will be in better shape.  My hope is that he gets his weight up to about 225 Lbs.  He is listed at 5'10.  That would give us a sort of "bowling ball" RB we really need.

2.  CB Mark Gilbert--He had a pretty bad hip injury early in his career.  He has good length and size.  He was brought in in the middle of the season and played surprisingly well in the snaps that he had.  I could see him maybe becoming a S/CB hybrid player and playing a bigger role that is expected at this point.

Who else could be surprise break-out players?

Jermar isn't that kind of back, though, he's more like a one-cut-and-go back who relies on decent burst and quickness, but without top-end speed. Another 10 pounds might simply make him slow.

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23 minutes ago, Superduperman said:

Jermar isn't that kind of back, though, he's more like a one-cut-and-go back who relies on decent burst and quickness, but without top-end speed. Another 10 pounds might simply make him slow.

NFL Draft Profile on Jermar Jefferson:

Overview

Consistent runner with NFL size and a wrecking ball running style that wears down defenses. Jefferson earned his degree in inside and outside zone scheme while at Oregon State despite having a lack of burst to the perimeter or loose hips for instant one-cut quickness. He possesses adequate vision to find and exploit run lane development, but is less slasher than he is a rhythm runner who needs carries to put his fingerprints on the game. His lack of burst will shrink the field for him a bit, but his talent and physicality are NFL-worthy as a middle-round backup who can handle more carries if needed.

 

https://www.nfl.com/prospects/jermar-jefferson/32004a45-4623-7349-2ea9-d13151c3df59

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I like Khalil Pimpleton as a surprise to make the team as a return man. 

Jeff Okudah could be decent if he is fully recovered - our staff has done wonders with DB's that are much less physically gifted. 

Onwuzurike could also have a big year if he's motivated and in shape. 

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24 minutes ago, Lions017 said:

I like Khalil Pimpleton as a surprise to make the team as a return man. 

Jeff Okudah could be decent if he is fully recovered - our staff has done wonders with DB's that are much less physically gifted. 

Onwuzurike could also have a big year if he's motivated and in shape. 

Really interested in these two. I know most have labeled Okudah a bust, but I still have a lot of hope for him.  We'll see if he is back 100%, but man an Achilles injury is rough on explosiveness.

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, LionArkie said:

Really interested in these two. I know most have labeled Okudah a bust, but I still have a lot of hope for him.  We'll see if he is back 100%, but man an Achilles injury is rough on explosiveness.

Okudah's physical skills are off the charts with the exception of his footwork.  Watching him trip over his own feet is really head-scratching.    It just seems like he has a tough time with the mental part of the game.  

Edited by Just Want A Title
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4 hours ago, Lions017 said:

I like Khalil Pimpleton as a surprise to make the team as a return man. 

Jeff Okudah could be decent if he is fully recovered - our staff has done wonders with DB's that are much less physically gifted. 

Onwuzurike could also have a big year if he's motivated and in shape. 

Sounds like Onwuzirke was hurt most of the year last year.  Hopefully being healthy and in a slightly different role will allow him to excel.  

I am still intrigued to see if Okudah can fit into a S/Nickel role and play better.  He may not be the lockdown CB but if we can get some value out of him to make it worth picking up a 5th year option it would be great.  

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On 5/11/2022 at 7:27 AM, Lions017 said:

Jeff Okudah could be decent if he is fully recovered - our staff has done wonders with DB's that are much less physically gifted. 

Onwuzurike could also have a big year if he's motivated and in shape. 

These are my two as well. If these two guys can bounce back this year, our defense can actually be pretty damn decent. 

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14 hours ago, Louis Friend said:

These are my two as well. If these two guys can bounce back this year, our defense can actually be pretty damn decent. 

We need a LB with a pulse that can cover LBs and TE.  Its good to settle our D-line but we need playmakers at the second level also.

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On 5/13/2022 at 6:59 AM, Just Want A Title said:

We need a LB with a pulse that can cover LBs and TE.  Its good to settle our D-line but we need playmakers at the second level also.

I would LOVE a LB who could cover. But our coaching staff doesn't seem to think we need LBs. I mean, they brought back Anzalone for God sake. 

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