This time of year, the wide world professional football is engrossed in how the young'uns are performing in the NFL Scouting Combine.
And right now, every sports media outlet is dialed in to Andrew Luck and company’s performances and what teams are going to scoop them up.
It’s easy to forget that we’re also inching closer to the free agency market, which begins on March 13, and that several already-established players may be on the move, or moving up the ranks of their current teams.
And this time, we aren’t talking about the team superstars: We are looking at the back-up guys. The under-the-radar players who got a couple of starts late in the season and really shined. The guys that tend to get overshadowed, but when called to the field of battle, always bring their A-game.
So let’s take a step back from the combine madness for a couple minutes and look at some gentlemen already in the NFL who we would like to see step up this season.
A couple of these players saw action toward the end of the 2011 season when their teammates were bench-ridden with injuries. One is set to be the hottest free agent on the market.
Here’s a look at five 2011 back-ups who are ready for bigger roles.