10 NFL Veterans Who Will Bounce Back in 2013 — Offense
10 NFL Veterans Who Will Bounce Back in 2013 - Offense
What an offseason we have witnessed this year in the NFL. There have been plenty of luscious story lines to follow for every team around the league. So many free agent signings have resulted in transformed rosters. A multitude of draft picks have left franchises with hope for their future. Coaching changes have given owners and general managers a new outlook on their teams.
Dating back to last season, there were plenty of guys who were used to performing well (some at a Pro Bowl level) but for whatever reason it may be, 2012 didn't give them the production they had hoped for. Injuries definitely played a part in that. Some players are going to have to come back stronger and prove their doubters wrong. Others are in a better situation than they were with a previous team and have an opportunity to show they've still got it. Yet a few more just simply underperformed and left us scratching our heads.
Going into 2013-2014, we will see some veterans step up and launch themselves back into the conversation of All-Pro, Pro Bowl and quite frankly, relevance. There is still much to be seen this offseason for a few of these guys, but in the end all signs point to them getting back on the right track and helping their respective squads reach new heights.
As different as the NFL may look for some teams during these all-important OTA's, that gives these guys more reasons to make a statement come the regular season. With many new faces around the league on several different teams, competitive position battles and controversy regarding some of the more laughable topics around the league, these players may be overlooked and not be talked about as much as they should be.
When all is said and done, though, these 10 players will be calling for attention on the field based on their play. Here are 10 NFL veterans ready to bounce back from a disappointing 2012.
Dwayne Bowe, WR Kansas City Chiefs
Let's give the guy a break. I mean, he did have to deal with both Matt Cassel and Brady Quinn at quarterback last season. Even with these guys under center, Bowe still managed over 800 receiving yards. However, his touchdown total came up short with only three on the year. With Alex Smith throwing him the ball in 2013, I expect his touchdown total to at least double, and hopefully he gets himself over 1,000 yards like he is capable of.
Pierre Garcon, WR Washington Redskins
In 10 games with the Washington Redskins last year, Pierre Garcon hauled in 67 passes for 633 yards and four touchdowns. A couple of years ago, the Chicago Bears would have died for those numbers out of a receiver. But, Garcon expects more out of himself going into 2013 coming off an injury. If he can play a full season, he should bounce back with a 1,000-yard campaign and anywhere from 7-10 touchdowns playing alongside quarterback Robert Griffin III.
Hakeem Nicks, WR New York Giants
Playing most of the year with a nagging injury, Hakeem Nicks comes into 2013 looking to prove to the New York Giants that he is well worth keeping as their No. 1 outside target. In 2012, he caught 53 passes for 692 yards, but only three touchdowns. He is not with the team at this moment, but I fully expect that to change. A healthy Nicks in 2013 is more than likely to give us what we'd expect out of him. I predict a good 1,200 yards and at least eight touchdowns.
Larry Fitzgerald, WR Arizona Cardinals
Is there a guy who should feel more ripped off in the last few years other than Larry Fitzgerald? He has kept his mouth shut while the Arizona Cardinals have done nothing to improve both the quarterback position and the offensive line. Heading into 2013, he will have a veteran quarterback throwing his way in Carson Palmer. Is Palmer a Pro Bowler? Not quite. But, he will improve Fitzgerald's productions compared to previous years. Look for Fitzgerald to ease his way towards that 1,000-yard mark and if all goes according to plan, he will catch a few more scores this season.
DeMarco Murray, RB Dallas Cowboys
I think we all remember DeMarco Murray's explosion onto the NFL scene a couple years ago. I would venture to guess he was gone in every fantasy league around the nation a few hours after his 253-yard performance. Unfortunately, he has been hampered by injuries and hasn't been able to play a full season in his first two years. In his third year now, Murray should be able to go over 1,000 yards if he stays healthy and may make fantasy owners much happier than last season.
Maurice Jones-Drew, RB Jacksonville Jaguars
Talk about a guy who needs to stay healthy: the Jacksonville Jaguars seems to have next to nothing offensively if Maurice Jones-Drew is not on the field. 86 carries last year was a disappointment for Jones-Drew after struggling with injury. At full health, he is one of the best backs in the NFL and with being the primary offensive weapon in Jacksonville, I see him going over 1,400 yards in 2013.
LeSean McCoy, RB Philadelphia Eagles
In 12 games last year, LeSean McCoy ran for 840 yards. That doesn't sound too bad, but for a guy like McCoy, it was a down year. At times, I looked at the Philadelphia Eagles and wondered who in the world they were offensively. Between quarterback Michael Vick turning the ball over left and right and McCoy not getting the ball nearly enough, his production wasn't close to his potential. With Chip Kelly now coaching, I could see McCoy going over 1,200 yards rushing and easily over 500 yards receiving. He will be one of the most exciting players to watch in 2013, so get ready.
Carson Palmer, QB Arizona Cardinals
I cannot believe I have two Arizona Cardinals on any list other than a comical representation of some of the worst franchises in the NFL at the moment. However, both Fitzgerald and quarterback Carson Palmer have high hopes to bounce back from lackluster seasons over the past couple of years. Palmer has thrown for his fair share of yards, but his overall production in scores and limiting turnovers hasn't been where it should be. With a cannon like Palmer's, I could see him developing a nice relationship with Fitzgerald and wide receiver Michael Floyd. Palmer very well may end up over 4,000 yards and 25 touchdowns in 2013.
Eli Manning, QB New York Giants
What was wrong with Eli Manning last year? I specifically remember waiting, and waiting and waiting for him to produce in my fantasy league, and eventually I gave up and cut him for the likes of Russell Wilson later in the year. This is not who Manning is — 2012 was a fluke. After all, he is a Manning right? With a healthy Hakeem Nicks and hopefully a happy Victor Cruz on the field, I expect Manning to bounce back and revert to his winning ways.
Matthew Stafford, QB Detroit Lions
I firmly believe that the Detroit Lions' signing of Reggie Bush was one of the more underrated moves this offseason. With the best receiver in the game and now one of the more versatile running backs in the screen game, Matthew Stafford is set up to have a great year. I love wide receiver Ryan Broyles, if he can stay healthy. Those three guys, along with a sure-handed Tony Scheffler, could make Stafford very happy in 2013. All that's missing is tight end Brandon Pettigrew hanging onto the ball. If that happens, look out for Stafford.