Arian Foster: Among the Five Surprising NFL Players in 2010
The 2010 NFL is full of surprises. The Steelers went 3-1 while Ben Roethlisberger served his four-game suspension.
The San Franscisco 49ers have still not one a game going into Week 5, many experts picked them to win the NFC West.
Michael Vick showed why he should still be considered one of the most elusive playmakers in the NFL with his play for the Philadelphia Eagles the first few weeks, before he suffered an injury to his ribs last week against Washington.
It is hard to consistently win the NFL. Different players must contribute at any given time. Arian Foster is showing why he is one of the best running backs in the league. St. Louis Rams quarterback Sam Bradford is proving he is worth the money he received as the top pick in last year's draft.
LaDainian Tomlinson is proving critics wrong, showing he can still be an elite back in the NFL.
Here is a list of my five surprising NFL players of the 2010 season thus far.
LaDainian Tomlinson: Running Back, New York Jets
New York Jets running back LaDainian Tomlinson is showing why he is considered an NFL Hall of Famer.
The San Diego Chargers grew disinterested with Tomlinson going with running back Darren Sproles and drafted running back Ryan Matthews out of Fresno State.
Tomlinson will easily end his career as one of the top running backs in NFL history.
He holds the all-time record for single-season touchdowns with 31, all-time record for single-season rushing touchdowns with 28, as well as the all-time record for most points in a season with 186 points.
Tomlinson is a versatile back and recorded his first 100-yard game in almost two seasons last week against the Buffalo Bills, scoring two touchdowns.
He is getting slightly more carries for the Jets this season than Shonn Greene. Tomlinson has helped the Jets rank second in the NFL in rushing yards per game with 167.8
Peyton Hillis: Running Back, Cleveland Browns
Cleveland Browns running back Peyton Hillis has finally gotten his shot to show what he do in the NFL, and he has not disappointed.
Hillis, a native of Conway, Ark., played college football for the Arkansas Razorbacks. He was one of the most highly recruited running backs out of high school.
Hillis was converted to fullback after eventual NFL stars Darren McFadden and Felix Jones entered the Razorback backfield and received the majority of the carries.
He was drafted by the Denver Broncos in the seventh round of the 2008 draft.
Hillis was involved in the trade that sent him to the Cleveland Browns along with a sixth-round pick in the 2011 draft and a conditional pick in the 2012 draft for Brown quarterback Brady Quinn.
Hillis has rushed for back-to-back 100-yard games against two tough AFC North opponents: Baltimore & Cincinnati. He has 322 yards this season on 66 attempts
The real test will be next week when Cleveland travels to Pittsburgh to take on the Steelers, a defense that held Tenessee Titans 2,000 rusher Chris Johnson to just 34 yards.
Sam Bradford: Quarterback, St. Louis Rams
St. Louis quarterback Sam Bradford was the first pick in the 2010 draft, signing a six-year $ 78 million deal, $50 million guaranteed, and has a maximum value of $86 million making it the largest contract ever for an NFL rookie.
Bradford was criticized by some experts who did not regard him as NFL-ready quarterback.
But after four games, Bradford is showing he was worth the first pick in last year's draft.
He has led the Rams to a 2-2 record. The Rams won just one game all of last season and three games the last two seasons.
Bradford is making great decisions, and he is finding receivers down the field. He has thrown for 944 yards and six touchdowns, and is starting to control his turnover troubles.
The NFC West is very weak. Why can't the St. Louis Rams be the team to win the division this year?
Michael Vick: Quarterback, Philadelphia Eagles
Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Michael Vick has proven why he is one of the most elusive players in the history of the NFL.
Vick has a quarterback rating of 108.8 and has accumulated 799 passing yards, throwing six touchdowns.
He has also ran for 187 yards on just 26 attempts, an average of 7.2 yards per carry.
The most impressive thing about Vick's game this season is his ability to keep his turnovers down. He has not thrown a single interception this year.
The time away from football has helped Vick mature into an NFL quarterback. He can read the field and make the proper adjustments. He is less likely to just take off and run when he is pressured.
Vick suffered a rib injury last week against the Washington Redskins, but it is being called "day-to-day."
Arian Foster: Running Back, Houston Texans
Houston Texans Arian Foster is making a name for himself as an NFL running back.
Foster, a running back out of the University of Tennessee, was signed by the Texans as an undrafted free agent in May, 2009.
He initially started off on special teams, but in 2009 he made his first career start against the New England Patriots rushing for 119 yards, scoring twice on just 20 carries.
Foster replaced Texans running back Steve Slaton in Houston's first game of the 2010 season against the Indianapolis Colts.
He rushed for 231 yards on 33 carries and three touchdowns. Foster broke the record for most rushing yards by a Texans player in a single game, as well as the most yards by a single player given up by the Colts.
Foster also posted the second-highest NFL opening day rushing total, trailing only O.J. Simpson's 250 yards in 1973.
He has 537 yards and four touchdowns this season. Foster has rushed for more than 100 yards in three of the four games this season.