The NFL is a cutthroat league where anything can happen and anyone can win on any given Sunday. Of course those of us who participate in the fantasy variety of the game never envision our picks to be the ones that turn out to be a bust, but whether you’re an armchair quarterbacks sitting at home on Sunday afternoon watching on your big screen or an actual NFL general manager on the hot seat, the fact of the matter is that fantasy owners and real-life executives alike can watch their hopes go down the toilet when their best players happen to fall well short of expectations. That is exactly why we here at The Sportster offer you a glimmer of hope now that the playoffs are upon us giving you something to think about going into the 2015 regular season with this list of the top 10 players poised for bounce back years.
Take it with a grain of salt, not every player on this list had a bad year if you match them up against the stats of the average NFL player, but odds are they didn’t meet their own standards for excellence and disappointed their fans. Then again, in a year in which the NFL dealt with an unprecedented number of issues related to the questionable personal conduct of some of the game’s brightest stars, not every player poised for a bounce back year is coming off of a bad one statistically, they just simply weren’t on the field very much at all. The number one player on this list should come as no surprise as he is one of the best players in football and only played a single game this season, but there are definitely a few other players to consider that you might not expect. Here’s the list.
10 Victor Cruz
9 Pierre Garcon
8 Rashad Jennings
7 Ray Rice
It’s pretty easy to select a guy as a bounce back candidate for the 2015 season when you consider that he didn’t play at all in 2014. Of course we’re talking about the one player who should instantly come to mind here, none other than former Baltimore Ravens running back Ray Rice, who was suspended for the entire season by the NFL for domestic violence issues surrounding Rice and his now wife Janay.
6 Robert Griffin
5 Percy Harvin
4 LeSean McCoy
3 Josh Gordon
2 Calvin Johnson
1 Adrian Peterson
It would only make sense that the biggest disappointment of the 2014 season would have the most potential to bounce back in 2015 and as much as football fans around the NFL probably didn’t see it coming, this year that title goes to Minnesota Vikings running back Adrian Peterson. Peterson was suspended for the season and placed on the commissioner’s exemption list for violating the league’s personal conduct policy amid allegations of child abuse. His attempts to appeal the league’s decision and get through court proceedings quickly weren’t enough to get him back on the field this past season.
It remains to be seen whether Peterson will be wearing a Vikings jersey in 2015, but no matter what team he plays for, he will still likely be one of the best players in the NFL and be motivated to put up great numbers to help people forget about his transgressions away from the field.
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