By Darrell Puckett
In this year’s NFL season there are a few unexpected players that have become playmakers and led their teams to success. Of course, Payton Manning and Drew Brees have been very productive, but who are the others? I’ve produced a top three list of players to break out this season.
First, Jamaal Charles of the Kansas City Chiefs has proved that his ability to become a playmaker is obvious. Charles has totaled 725 rushing yards, six touchdowns, 389 receiving yards, and two receiving touchdowns. He has solidified himself as a force to be reckoned with. Kansas City is 9-0 in the AFC West and has a two-game lead over Denver. Last season Charles was forgotten about because of how terrible the Chiefs were, but Andy Reid has brought this team back to relevance. If you play fantasy football, congratulations because he has become the number one running back this year. Look for Charles and the Chiefs to finish at around 16 wins.
Second is Andrew Luck of the Indianapolis Colts, who has totaled 1,574 passing yards, 10 touchdowns, 183 rushing yards, and three touchdowns. The second-year quarterback has jolted his team to a 5-2 record. Luck went toe to toe with Payton Manning two weeks ago and won the hearts of Colt fans. This could be an obvious pick for this list, but I believe that people aren’t giving him the credit due. The Colts are in position for a post season run, so keep an eye on them.
Third is Cameron Newton for the Carolina Panthers. Yes, Newton hasn’t been very good the past few years, but he is finally leading his team to success. Being a great player doesn’t put you into the elite category, but being able to win does. Tom Brady hasn’t had the best teams, but he always finds a way to win. Newton has totaled 1,801 passing yards, 13 touchdowns, 251 rushing yards, and four touchdowns. Carolina is 5-3 in the NFC South and sits one game behind New Orleans. Look for Newton to lead the Panthers into playoff contention this year.
My opinion is just one of many, but if there are any comments or questions, then let them be heard.
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[Edited by Anne Stanford and Silvia Giagnoni - 11/4/13]