We all know about the Tom Brady’s and the Adrian Peterson’s of the NFL. However, there are a ton of lesser known players that have a huge impact on their teams performance. These players may not have been drafted in the first couple of rounds, but they shouldn’t be going unnoticed in the league.
Kam Chancellor is not the prototypical defensive back that we are used to seeing in the NFL based on his size alone. He is 6’3″ and and was clocked running a 4.52 40 yard dash. His play in the final 2 years at Virginia Tech lead him to be drafted in the 5th round of the 2010 draft by the Seattle Seahawks. According to his defensive backs coach at VT, Chancellor could be “the greatest safety in Virginia Tech history.” In his rookie season, he saw limited action in all 16 games. He finished the season with respectable numbers for a rookie role player in the secondary: 23 tackles, 1 sack, 1 pass deflect and a forced fumble. If he is able to use the combination of his tall frame and his quickness, then he should be to contribute to the Seahawks secondary for years to come. All signs are pointing to Kam becoming the starting safety for the Seahawks this upcoming season.
Matt Shaughnessy (pronounced Shoug-a-lu-sky)
Matt Shaughnessy is a defensive end for the Oakland Raiders. He was drafted in the 3rd round of the 2009 draft. He has seen some success in his 2 years as a Raider. He has started 10 games over the past 2 years and has recorded 11 career sacks to go along with 85 tackles. Shaughnessy possesses the quickness to be an effective pass rusher off the edge. He needs to work on getting better leverage to be more effective in the running game. I’m feeling a big season out of him this year as well as the Raiders as a unit. I don’t know why his named is spelled like it is but it has been confirmed that it pronounced as if it were spelled Shougalusky.
Johnnie Lee Higgins
Johnnie Lee Higgins has been in the NFL since being drafting in the 3rd round of the 2007 draft. Besides 2008, when he led all Raiders receivers in yards, he hasn’t really panned out as a wide receiver, but he has contributed on special teams, both as a returner and on the coverage team. It would be nice to see Johnnie Lee get back to his 2008 form (before he got lit up going across the middle) so we can see some touchdown celebration out of him. It’s hard to celebrate when you haven’t scored a touchdown in 2 years. Anyway, Johnnie Lee was one of the most exciting players in the league before Eric Weddle fucked him up and it would be great for the Raiders/NFL if he regained his 2008 form. I mean just look and his picture and tell me that you can honestly root against him.