2011 NFL All-Rookie Team

January 3, 2012 at 9:43 am 6 comments

Here are my picks for the best rookie at each position from the 2011 season.  For comparison purposes, check out my pre-draft all rookie team to see who excelled and who disappointed.  Upon re-doing the list, it’s apparent how many bright pass rushers are in this class and not just on the DL.  Roy Helu, Richard Sherman, and Aldon Smith lead those who excelled despite low expectations.

Cam exceeded even my high expectations


OT: O. Franklin  LG: Wisniewski  C: Pouncey  RG: Watkins  RT: T. Smith

WR: A.J. Green          QB: Newton   TE: Rudolph             WR: Julio Jones

FB: Miller  RB: Roy Helu

No surprise with Green and Jones, while Wisniewski and Franklin have been so solid for their AFC West teams and Helu proved to be a real sleeper for the Redskins zone blocking scheme.  As if you didn’t know, Cam Newton probably had the best rookie season ever.

Spectacular from Day 1


DE: JJ Watt       DT: Dareus      DT: Taylor      DE: Clayborn

OLB: Miller          MLB: Foster         OLB: Aldon Smith

CB: Peterson        FS: Conte     SS: Moore          CB: Sherman

The DL prospects in this class did not disappoint and many teams will be happy for a while.  Safety remained the weakest position, but Conte looked solid for the Bears and Sherman was one of a few steal the Seahawks got this year.

Honorable Mention: Murray, D. Baldwin, J. Sheard, Kerrigan

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6 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Brandon  |  January 3, 2012 at 10:18 am

    Are you serious???? No mention of Dalton?????? He and the Bengals are in the playoffs!!

    • 2. whoaleckna  |  January 3, 2012 at 10:54 am

      Cam had the better season. A.J. Green is the #1 WR and Dalton certainly would be on the second team (if I made one). Very impressed with what Jay Gruden and Andy Dalton have done this year.

  • 3. Ernie  |  January 3, 2012 at 12:46 pm

    good article, i dont know about rudolph at TE but he is good…i liked julius thomas a lot from the broncos

    • 4. whoaleckna  |  January 3, 2012 at 4:58 pm

      Thanks. TE was a tough position. Rudolph and Kendricks performed under expectations, while Thomas was a preseason surprise who was quiet as well. I don’t evaluate blocking, so it came down to production over the last couple of weeks where he had 7-53-1 TD…a far cry from the production the Patriots got from their TEs a year before who were both selected later.

  • 5. David  |  April 28, 2012 at 5:55 pm

    I got in a mild shouting match with an ESPN blogger who suggested before last spring’s draft that Purdue’s Ryan Kerrigan would be one of the major busts of the draft. This guy had never seen him play, let alone never seen him dominate as he did in some Big 10 games, such as Michigan. Glad to see you mention him. Hard telling how much better he might have been if he hadn’t had to change positions….

    • 6. whoaleckna  |  May 1, 2012 at 9:14 am

      I completely agree. Would’ve loved to see him remain a 4-3 DE. Was a beast for years in college, I don’t understand why so many players that have big conference production in college get passed on in the draft.


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