clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

NFC South Rookie Report: Unimpressive Weeks For 1st Round Rooks

The NFC South's 1st round selections have been up and down in 2011 as they experienced both league shattering highs, and mind boggling failure. Divisional week was the latter, as four of five 1st rounders failed to move the needle, with only Cameron Jordan of the Saints having any kind of impact. Ultimately, young players have these struggles sometimes and while they'll give you 4-5 great games you'll also get another 7-8 that confuse you.

↵

 

↵

Cam Newton- Panthers

↵

The homecoming for the rookie QB wasn't quite as grand as he had hoped. While Newton completed 60% of his passes he threw three interceptions at critical times. Granted, many of these came on brilliant defensive plays rather than passing miscues it still wound up costing the Panthers the game.

↵

This week Carolina return home to face the surprising Washington Redskins. In a three week stretch that saw the Panthers play Chicago, New Orleans and Atlanta this should be a slight reprieve. With the Skins dealing with some injuries on defense I think this is the week he returns to form.

↵

 

↵

Julio Jones- Falcons

↵

A really tough two weeks for the receiver. Jones was forced out of last week's game due to injury, and this week he is listed as 'questionable'. It's frustrating because the Falcons' offense is vastly better with Jones on the field and these injuries as quickly derailing a record season for the rookie.

↵

 

↵

Adrian Clayborn- Buccaneers

↵

A strong start has well and truly petered out for Clayborn as he registered just two tackles against New Orleans. Unlike earlier in the season we're not seeing the penetration from Clayborn and he's struggling to get to the quarterback.

↵

If there's a week for Clayborn to break out of this funk it's in foggy London as the Bucs play the Bears in Wembley stadium. If you need sacks as a defensive player the Bears will give them to you in spades, so he has no excuse this week.

↵

 

↵

Cameron Jordan- Saints

↵

Unlike the rest of the rookies Jordan played quite well against Tampa- finishing the game with 6 tackles. Like the aforementioned Clayborn he's still not able to get to the QB, but this game represented an improvement in a lackluster year.

↵

Much like Clayborn also the Saints play a beleaguered team in Indianapolis who can't seem to protect their semblance of a QB Curtis Painter. This week is primed for him to make an impact, but I don't have a lot of faith based on what I've seen.

↵

 

↵

Mark Ingram- Saints

↵

Watching Ingram run it's apparant that sooner or later he'll put it all together, but that just isn't happening in 2011. A 9 carry, 22 yard day is mediocre no matter which way you cut it, and even a goal line TD doesn't make it look any better. This was the 5th game in which Ingram failed to run for over 4.0 yards per carry.

↵

The Colts are 30th against the run and pretty much allow anyone to hit the second level regularly. If Ingram fails against this team it might not be premature to start hitting the panic button.

↵

 

↵

Photographs by coka_koehler used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.