Top 5 Most Exciting 2015 Rookies From Outside The First Round
The 2015 rookie draft is now done and dusted, the internet is breaming with articles such as - Why Winston will be better than Mariota and Kevin White? More like Kevin Bust. This article is going to try and go around these ridiculously early opinions and highlight which guys everybody should be excited too see come kick off time that were not drafted in the first-round.
1. David Cobb, RB - Tennessee Titans
Cobb was a late round running back that is your definition of a 'North-South' bruiser. Cobb is in a great position to win the starting job, even if the Titans' spurned a second-round draft pick in 2014 on the underwhelming Bishop Sankey. Shonn Greene is on the decline as age and injuries start to increase and Dexter McCluster has been used as nothing more than a receiving back on situational plays. Cobb won't blow you away with speed, but he will break away with his physicality, something that fits Ken Whisenhunts power run scheme.
Cobb has the perfect chance to shine. The Titans' offensive line is back to full health, it has seen some upgrades and competition added and is being charged with the responsibility of keeping the new franchise quarterback - Marcus Mariota, upright. But the one thing that has been overlooked is that this offensive line is built on the power run between the tackles, something that was not Bishop Sankey's style. If Cobb can perform well during the pre-season (not just running the ball, but blocking also), his bruising style of play and one cut ability should see the jersey no.27 rise again for the Titans'. Yes Titan fans, Eddie Geoge gave Cobb clearence to wear his number.
2. Randy Gregory, OLB - Dallas Cowboys
Gregory has a chip on his shoulder. He was a top-5 talent that slid to the Cowboys' deep in the second round due to off-field issues. Now, Gregory will be starting week one and has everything to prove. Gregory is the type of player who thrives off proving people wrong, he has 31 NFL executives to give reasons to regret not selecting him.
Extremely fast off the edge or reliable enough to drop pass protection, Gregory is going to hit you, and you will know about it. When you watch some of the film on Gregory, you can see he hits like a sledgehammer and does not give up, his engine just keeps going, and going, and going. There will be a lot of disappointed franchises when they realize they should have looked past his indiscretions and drafted him. Gregory's hit power reminds me a lot of former legendary hospitalizer, Ronnie Lott - but it may take Gregory a couple of seasons to realize he can do this however.
3. Landon Collins, SS - New York Giants
Once considered the safety of the draft, Collins was looked over in the first round until the Giants' traded up with Tennessee to get to the top of round two so they could land their diffrence maker. Collins is referred to as an 'in-the-box' safety who is good at providing run support, it should also be noted that Collins is equally as dangerous in pass protection, making a lot of crucial plays in college. Whilst Collins was not the first safety drafted, many say he should have been. The Giants got a solid college product that won't required a lot of polishing at the next level.
The reason why Collins is listed as an exciting prospect to keep an eye on is because of his turnover causing potential. In a pass happy league, Collins is required to give the Giants' that something on defense they lacked immensley last season. Collins can lay the wood when he wants to as well, and there is nothin wrong with witnessing a big hit!
4. Devin Funchess, WR - Carolina Panthers
Funchess was not one of the big name receivers in the draft, however, the Panthers' have now equipped quarterback Cam Newton with two towers for receivers who are both deceivingly quick. Funchess and Benjamin could turn into one of the best receiving groups in the NFL. Funchess, Olsen and Benjamin combine to make the biggest receiving corps in NFL.
Height does not make you an exciting player, but knowing how to use your height to your advantage does, and being in arguably the worst conferences in the NFL, there will be plenty of opportunities to exploit weaker defenses for Funchess. Funchess has the chance to come in and be a day one starter opposite Kelvin Benjamin. These two could be extremely dangerous red zone receiving threats.
5. Tevin Coleman, RB - Atlanta Falcons
Coleman, is a player that could be that enigma on the Falcons' offense. One dynamic that has been sorely missed in Atlanta is any semblence of a ground game. Enter, Tevin Coleman, the sifty running back was top five on a lot of big boards and Coleman will come into a side that won't be facing too much pressure in the box as teams gameplan for Julio Jones and Roddy White. Coleman has a lot of promise to succeed early.
With a lot of the pressure lifted off Coleman to make an impact early, he could really come into his own. When a rookie has no pressure to succeed early, they tend to play a lot better and this is the situation that Coleman finds himself in. Coleman has issues in protection, but we he lacks there he makes up with in other areas, such as being a viable receiving threat for Matt Ryan. Coleman can be that constant sneaky check down that helps the Falcons' move the chains. Expect to see Coleman pick up more than expected sneaky touchdowns.
Honorable mentions: T.J. Yeldon - Jacksonville Jaguars, Ameer Abdullah - Detroit Lions, Jaelen Strong - Houston Texans, Devin Smith - New York Jets, Mario Edwards Jr - Oakland Raiders, Hau'oli Kikaha - New Orleans Saints, Eric Rowe - Philadelphia Eagles.
With the NFL start only a couple of months away, i'm sure we are all getting excited to see and hear all about these rookies come training camp. Stay tuned for the top 5 most exciting UDFA players to keep an eye out for