NFL All-Rookie Team: Week 13 Update
Thirteen weeks of play in the National Football League are in the books.
Over the last three months, we have seen great performances by rookies like Sam Bradford, Joe Haden and Ndamukong Suh.
How would a team look who is made up of just the best rookies from the 2010 season?
Here is our Week 13 All Rookie team; including offense, defense and special teams.
Quarterback: Sam Bradford, St. Louis Rams
Rookies are not supposed to look this good, but the first overall pick from the 2010 NFL Draft has been crazy good this season.
In 12 starts, Bradford has 17 touchdowns and is completing 60 percent of his passes—all for a passer rating of 81.0.
Bradford is a huge part of the Rams 6-6 record this year.
Running Back: Jahvid Best, Detroit Lions
Best has fought injuries this season, but when he is on the field great things have happened.
Best leads all rookie running backs in receptions (50) and is third in rushing yards (447). More impressively is the impact he has on the offense when in the game.
The Lions have a bright future if young stars Best and Matthew Stafford can stay on the field.
Running Back: LeGarrette Blount, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Blount has emerged as the Buccaneers featured back this season, and he has looked great doing it. Rarely do undrafted running backs play this well, but Blount is capitalizing on second chances this year.
Blount is averaging 15 carries per game with a 4.5 yard per carry average, very respectable for any running back. His rookie stats might not blow anyone away, as he got a late start, but watch out for Blount late this season.
Wide Receiver: Mike Williams, Tampa Bay Buccaneers
Williams has been unstoppable this season, and is a big part of the resurgence in Tampa Bay.
Williams leads all rookies with 51 catches and 769 yards, giving him a jaw-dropping 15.1 per catch average. Williams play in the red zone has been huge for Josh Freeman, and his seven touchdowns show how important he is to the Bucs.
Wide Receiver: Dez Bryant, Dallas Cowboys
Dez Bryant has been phenomenal this season, when he is on the field.
Despite missing one game to injury and being limited early in the year, Bryant was finding his groove until breaking his fibula last weekend.
Dez is second among rookie receivers with 45 catches, but he is also a dangerous return man.
Tight End: Jermaine Gresham, Cincinnati Bengals
Leading all tight ends in receptions this year, Gresham has quietly had a very good season.
His 47 receptions are impressive, but his nine catches and a touchdown against the Colts in Week 10 was his breakout game. NFL defensive coordinators had better take notice, the league has a new stud tight end.
Offensive Line: Rodger Saffold, St. Louis Rams
Saffold, the first pick in Round 2 during the 2010 NFL Draft, has been brilliant at left tackle for the Rams this season.
Rarely do left tackles come in and play this well. In 12 starts he has allowed only two sacks of rookie quarterback and Rookie of the Year leader Sam Bradford.
Saffold and Bradford are the building blocks for the Rams playoff run, and their future.
Offensive Line: Mike Iupati, San Francisco 49ers
How good has Mike Iupati been at guard for the 49ers? In 12 starts he has allowed one sack.
Many in the NFL are already comparing Iupati to future Hall of Famer Steve Hutchinson of the Minnesota Vikings.
Center: Maurkice Pouncey, Pittsburgh Steelers
Pouncey has been a lone bright spot on an otherwise terrible season for the Steelers offensive line.
Playing with mostly backups at this point, Pouncey is holding the line together. The Steelers have a cornerstone to build their offensive line around in Pouncey.
Offensive Line: Zane Beadles, Denver Broncos
The Denver Broncos season has been a complete let down, but there is a bright spot on the offensive line. Beadles has been solid as a rock, starting 10 games at left guard.
A second round pick in the 2010 NFL Draft, Beadles has surpassed even the most optimistic expectations for his rookie season.
Offensive Line: J'Marcus Webb, Chicago Bears
The 2010 NFL Draft saw four offensive tackles selected in the first round. None of them show up on our list of the best rookies this season.
In eight starts for the Bears this season, Webb has surpassed his draft mates taken in rounds one through seven. As the 218th pick in the draft, no one expected Webb to play in his rookie season.
Webb has done more than play; he has established himself as the right tackle of the future in Chicago.
Defensive Line: Ndamukong Suh, Detroit Lions
Suh leads all rookies in sacks with eight, but he is also leading all NFL defensive tackles in the category. He also has an interception, three passes defensed and a fumble returned for a touchdown.
Oh, and 49 tackles, again most by rookie defensive linemen.
Suh has made a case for the NFL's best rookie, regardless of position. He may even be the best defensive tackle in the NFL.
Defensive Line: Carlos Dunlap, Cincinatti Bengals
Dunlap missed the first five weeks of the NFL season, and he is still leading all rookie defensive ends in sacks.
Dunlap is coming into his own late this season, amassing 3.5 sacks in the last two games. The next four weeks will be exciting ones for Dunlap.
Defensive Line: Lamarr Houston, Oakland Raiders
Houston has been the perfect fit for the Raiders defensive line. Playing left end, next to Richard Seymour, Houston has racked up four sacks and two fumble recoveries. He is also very stout against the run.
The Raiders have been better than expected this year, just ask the Chargers. A big part of their improvement on defense is No. 99.
Defensive Line: Jason Pierre-Paul, New York Giants
Pierre-Paul has been very good in spot time for the Giants this season. His week 12 game against Jacksonville was a potential break out game for the first rounder.
JPP terrorized the Jaguars for eight tackles, two sacks and two forced fumbles.
That is a solid day at the office.
Linebacker: Frank Zombo, Green Bay Packers
Frank Zombo is the one player on this list the casual NFL fan will not know. He's worth Googling.
In seven starts this season Zombo has shored up the outside linebacker spot opposite MVP candidate Clay Matthews. With four sacks and two forced fumbles so far, not to mention 36 tackles, Zombo gives the Packers a legitimate running mate for Matthews in the future.
Linebacker: Rolando McClain, Oakland Raiders
McClain has stepped in and led the Raiders defense from day one. He's a bright player with an even brighter future.
On the year he has 64 tackles, second among rookie linebackers, along with an interception, five passes defensed and half a sack.
Linebacker: Brandon Spikes, New England Patriots
Spikes stat sheet is not as impressive as other rookies, but his play has been extremely solid. His interception in a Monday night showdown with the New York Jets turned the tide of the game, and helped kick start a 45-3 win over a division rival.
Spikes has started eight games this year, but he is gaining more and more playing time as the year goes on. He will be the Patriots starter next to Jerod Mayo in 2011.
Defensive Back: T.J. Ward, Cleveland Browns
We originally had Eric Berry here, but a very wise man pointed out that no NFL safety has given up more touchdowns than Berry.
T.J. Ward has been a wrecking ball at safety all season long. In fact, he's been almost too aggressive at times. One number that sums up Ward: 92 tackles.
Defensive Back: Joe Haden, Cleveland Browns
Haden is one of the NFL's brightest young stars. With five interceptions this season, Haden has emerged as the Browns best cover man. Not to mention those five picks have come in five straight games.
Haden eased into a starting position with the Browns. We don't expect him to give it up for a long time.
Defensive Back: Devin McCourty, New England Patriots
Don't look now, but Devin McCourty is having a Pro Bowl season for the Patriots.
He has six interceptions, 64 tackles and has shut down some of the NFL's best receivers week after week. Against the Colts he had one interception. Against the Steelers he had 11 tackles. And in a division showdown with the Jets he had a key interception.
Defensive Back: Earl Thomas, Seattle Seahawks
If it were not for Ndamukong Suh, Earl Thomas would be the NFL's Defensive Rookie of the Year.
Just look at this stat line: 64 tackles, five interceptions, seven passes defensed and a handful of game changing hits.
Earl Thomas is the NFL's next great safety.
Return Specialist: Dexter McCluster, Kansas City Chiefs
McCluster has been one of the most exciting players in the NFL this season. His play is a big reason for the Chiefs first place standings in the AFC West.
McCluster is a jack-of-all-trades type player. He has excelled on offense in the slot and the backfield, but his biggest impact has been as a return man.
Big things are on the horizon for this Chief.
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