NFC South Rookie Report: Lackluster Week Five For The Rookies

Week four was a stellar week for the NFC South rookies capped off with Cam Newton winning the rookie of the week award. In week five it was a little different as all five 1st round picks struggled in their own way. That being said, week six looks a lot brighter for some of this division's rookies.

Cam Newton

In week five Newton did some good things, and some bad things against the New Orleans Saints. He started the game with a costly interception to start off the game which really put the Panthers in a bad spot, however he prevailed and finished the game with three total touchdowns in a loss to New Orleans.

This weekend could be much better for Newton, purely because the Falcons' defense is a little banged up this week. If John Abraham is unable to play we'll see some real problems for Atlanta in pressuring Newton, which could allow him to have a big day.

Julio Jones

These two weeks haven't been kind on the Falcons' rookie wide receiver. This week he's being hampered with a hamstring injury which has ruled him out in Sunday's game vs. Carolina. What makes this more frustrating is this week should have been a major game for Jones. He would have been working against CB Captain Munnerlyn, who he would have outclassed and likely posted another 100+ yard day, but for now he'll need to be watching from the bench.

Last week Jones had an equally bad week. He wasn't able to make a dent against the Green Bay Packers, as his most exciting play was a 17 yard end around in the first half. He finished with one catch for 12 yards.

 

Adrian Clayborn

His two week sack streak was unable to be extended to three against San Francisco. However, he continues to look quite good for a rookie and looks like he'll develop into a big time DE.

This Sunday the rookie will have a really rough time against New Orleans. The Saints OL has been extremely stout this season, and there's little chance he'll have a breakthrough this week.

 

Cameron Jordan

The song remains the same for the rotational rookie DE. He's really not performing very well and finished with 1 tackle against Carolina, and I expect that will remain the same. Right now he's looking like the worst of the NFC South 1st round picks.

 

Mark Ingram

Ingram scored a touchdown against the Carolina Panthers, but has yet to have a breakthrough performance as he finished with 9 carries for 32 yards. While it's clear he has talent, thus far Ingram has been unable to hit his holes hard enough and make big gains on the ground. His longest run this season was 17 yards, and that is slightly disappointing in 2011.

This week he could have a decent game against Tampa Bay. The Bucs are allowing 123 yards a game on the ground, so the potential is there if Ingram is able to take advantage of it.

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