Against All Odds

Thomas B. Shea

What player in the NFL, not necessarily on the Baltimore Ravens, has performed against all odds this season?

The above is the Gillette "No Debate" Question of the Week over on their Facebook page. What player has "defied the laws of gravity," as Scotty always said on Star Trek!? What player has either risen from the ashes, returned from injury, or raised his game to a whole new level when least expected.

For instance, perhaps many expected Peyton Manning to return to at least close to the old Peyton. Others knew that Adrian Peterson would recover at some point to return to being one of the best running backs in the league. However, did anyone expect Seattle Seahawks QB to come from being a third-round draft pick, unseat the highly-paid Matt Flynn to start, much less lead his team to the record they have and the playoffs as a rookie?

There are three teams with rookie QB's in the post season, unheard of in year's past. Coming back from an ACL injury, much less neck surgery to play at such a high level, is equally amazing. With most of the attention on the Washington Redskins rookie QB, Robert Griffin III, almost lost on that team is the amazing performance by rookie RB Alfred Morris and his 1,600+ yards, second only in the league to Adrian Peterson's.

Wide receiver Eric Decker had 50 catches in his two-year career with the Denver Broncos, BP (before Peyton), but exploded this season with 85 for 1,064 yards and 13 TD receptions. Houston Texans DE J.J. Watt had a decent rookie season of 2011 with 5.5 sacks, but then jumped all the way to 20.5 in 2012and a probable NFL Defensive Player of the Year award.

So who's the guy you think fits into the "No Debate" category?

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