The hits were pretty substantial — Robert Griffin III, Andrew Luck, Trent Richardson, Luke Kuechly, Chandler Jones, Doug Martin and so on.
But what do we make of the other members of last year’s rookie class, those guys who needed more than one season to really make their presences felt? Here are 10 members of the 2012 draft class who should be set for bigger things in 2013:
Coby Fleener, TE, Colts
Fleener did not have a bad rookie season, per se. It’s just that injuries limited him to 12 games, and fellow rookie tight end Dwayne Allen (taken 30 spots lower than Fleener in last year’s draft) lapped him with 45 receptions to Fleener’s 26. Indianapolis expects more out of its 2012 second-rounder, especially given his time with Andrew Luck at Stanford — Fleener caught 10 touchdown passes in his senior year.
Akiem Hicks, DT/DE, Saints
New Orleans’ switch to a 3-4 defense should play to Hicks’ benefit, following a rookie season in which he made zero starts and was inactive for the team’s final game.