Justin Blackmon and 3 Rookies Rebounding After Slow Starts to the Season
Don't call them busts just yet.
A handful of 2012 rookies started rather slowly in their first professional seasons, but have demonstrated terrific resiliency to become important facets of their respective teams.
Justin Blackmon instantly comes to mind as a player who has turned it around, but he's not the only one.
David Wilson fumbled on his second career NFL carry and was subsequently in Tom Coughlin's doghouse.
The rookie runner received only 24 carries in 11 games following the two he got in his professional debut and was rendered highly ineffective.
Then, against the New Orleans Saints in Week 14, he accumulated 100 yards with two rushing touchdowns on 13 carries and had a 97-yard touchdown on a kickoff return.
The next week against the Atlanta Falcons, he averaged 4.6 yards per carry.
A nice turnaround for the inherently explosive back.
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Michael Brockers didn't record his first individual tackle until Week 7 against the Green Bay Packers, and after a zero-tackle game against the New England Patriots in Week 8, he has been a disruptive force on the interior.
He had a sack and a half against the San Francisco 49ers and had the same sack total against the Buffalo Bills in early December.
While the relatively raw but natural powerful Brockers still has a way to go to become the defensive tackle the Rams wanted when they drafted him in the first round, he has performed much better down the stretch than earlier in the season.
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Justin Blackmon had 250 receiving yards heading into the Jacksonville Jaguars' Week 11 battle with the Houston Texans.
Then, he erupted for 236 yards on 14 receptions.
Outside of a one-catch, nine-yard effort against the Buffalo Bills, the former Oklahoma State standout has been super steady for Mike Mularkey's squadron.
Currently, he has 51 catches for 707 and three touchdowns—a respectable rookie campaign— and has reeled in at least six catches in each of the last three contests.
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Russell Wilson didn't necessarily have a slow start, but over the last two months, he has taken his game to an elite level.
After the Monday Night Football loss to the San Francisco 49ers, the rookie quarterback had eight passing touchdowns and seven interceptions and was completing less than 60 percent of his passes.
Since that defeat, he has accounted for 16 touchdowns with only two interceptions and had five games with a QB rating over 104.
Frankly, he is giving Robert Griffin III serious competition in the Offensive Rookie of the Year race.