Even though its been pretty obvious that this class is not up to where we are used to. Over 2011 and 2012, we had some legitimate superstars among the rookies taking the field during the first months of the season. As a result, collectors havent been as willing to drop big bucks on boxes as they were in previous years. Despite this situation, after the last few weeks, there might be a few potential impact players in the making. Dont give up hope quite yet.
I was shocked when the bills chose Manuel over the other options, and after two games against the Pats and Carolina, he isnt looking like the fish out of water I expected him to. Collectors immediately jumped on board with his status, if not only because he was the ONLY QB taken in the first round. It only went further to sour value on the QBs when all the needy teams passed. Manuel has shown he can be worthy of a first round pick so far, and collectors arent shy about letting people know they feel the same way. His cards ticked upwards as he came close to beating New England, and with his first win against the Panthers, he has established himself as the top value rookie in the class.
He has some impressive stuff up right now:
If there was going to be one star in the making, I thought it would be the guy many are calling “Percy Harvin Light.” He had a quiet first week, but yesterday’s two TD performance put him ahead of the rest of the rookie WRs so far. The Rams almost eeked out a win, and Austin was instrumental in that comeback. However, as a WR, many collectors are still unsure if he can be a guy they are willing to spend a ton of money on.
Austin is still cheap, but he is going to be a top WR in this class when its all said and done:
He isnt the prototypical Calvin Johnson or Andre Johnson, and its capped his value a bit. This might be a good example of how he can still be worthy of some investment.
There is no better place for a rookie to shine than on a game winning drive. Even more so if they make the game winning play. Hopkins looks like a guy who is primed to be a big part of the Texans’ offense, and he showed it on Sunday with Andre Johnson leaving the game early. Collectors arent as favorable to Hopkins because he has such a horrible signature, but he is definitely worthy of a look at this point. If Johnson misses more time, Hopkins will get a great look, and I am curious to see how he will perform. Might want to get in on the lower floors.
Here is what I know. Patterson is an EXPLOSIVE player who has top speed. He is also big and can move well with the ball in his hands. That being said, it looks like he is a year away, not from lack of talent, but because the Vikings are stupid in the way they use him. He only had 6 plays on offense yesterday, and despite the fact that the Vikings receivers have accounted for ZERO TDs so far, the coaching staff isnt giving him a shot. Regardless of this stupidity, he managed to run back a kick 105 yards for a score to showcase exactly what collectors are seeing in his ability. Its not like the Vikings have a great QB, which is obvious, so why not give him a shot? Makes no sense to me. He may not be 100% fully baked, but with the running game facing 9 guys in the box each play, its worth it to explore other options in a year that isnt looking pretty.
Even though the Pats played on Thursday, Dobson was close to the biggest game of the year so far. He caught a 39 yard TD on busted coverage and had a few others go off his hands that would have been scores. With random fans off the street playing WR for the Patriots, Dobson might be all they have. This will get him a lot more involvement in the Patriots’ passing game, and more collectors taking notice of what he is capable of. He already had value as one of the Patriots only offensive rookies with autographs in sets, but this should help quite a bit. Regardless, his cards are dirt cheap right now, and with all the injury problems, this might be a guy worth looking at.
We can all talk for days about what is going to happen next year with Manziel, Bridgewater, and company, but for now we are stuck with these guys. Stuck really isnt a good word, as there really are some players that should interest team collectors all around. I am high on a few of them for sure, even though the bounties of 2012 are gone and not forgotten.