Unheralded but Undeterred: Five Rookies Who Could Surprise in '09

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Unheralded but Undeterred: Five Rookies Who Could Surprise in '09
(Photo by Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images)

Tom Brady. Terrell Davis. Deacon Jones. Mel Blount.

This short list of players may seem simply a random collection of past and present football greats, but in fact it's a small selection of late-round NFL picks who have carved out stellar pro careers.

The NFL draft, no matter how much it is analyzed, is an inexact science, and every year it seems like a late-round player makes a big splash at the pro level.

In recent years we've seen Marques Colston (7th round), Brandon Marshall (4th round) and Ahmad Bradshaw (7th round) make big impacts for their teams, so who will be the next late-round sensation in the NFL?

We at PaP have chosen five possible breakout candidates for the 2009 season, and are only taking one candidate per position.

Regular readers will know that we are huge supporters of the forgotten men of the NFL, and would rather root for the small-school hopeful than the megabucks wonder-kid, so it is in this tradition that we look at these late-round afterthoughts.

Draft analysts once described Drew Brees as "lacking accuracy" and accused him of being a spread-option miracle, so it's fair to say that they've been wrong before. We hope not to be.

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