NFL 2011 Season: 10 Players Who Are Rising Stars and You Should Keep an Eye On

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NFL 2011 Season: 10 Players Who Are Rising Stars and You Should Keep an Eye On
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

If there's one thing that the 2010 NFL season has proven so far, it's that you don't have to be a first-round draft choice to make an impact in this league.

Prior to September's opening kickoff, the usual abundance of talent was showcased in the NFL's front window, as the league's fan favorites stole headlines and occupied the spotlight in typical preseason manner.

Yes, Peyton Manning was the questioned man following the Indianapolis Colts' Super Bowl loss. Tom Brady was queried on his return back into the MVP discussion. And, of course, Brett Favre lingered in the background after caving in to the Minnesota Vikings quarterback plea.

Through it all, though, somehow the NFL's young guns have taken over the tabloids a little this season, thanks to the likes of Miles Austin, Clay Matthews and Mark Sanchez, who capped off a brilliant 2009 campaign in unexpected fashion.

What did that leave for this year?

A new-found demand on the league's up-and-coming stars that hasn't been seen in, well, forever.

Here's a look at 10 NFL players you should keep an eye on next season and, strangely enough, most of them are rookies heading into their second seasons.

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