My initial pick was Jameis Winston because of the importance of his position, but I can't go against Todd Gurley's sheer game-changing and God-given ability. He's already in the mix of the best running backs in the league, and that is based off one year in which he was presumably on a pitch count. Now that Marshawn Lynch has retired, the running back ranking goes Adrian Peterson, then Todd Gurley. Jameis Winston will have the brightest future because this is a quarterback's league. The Buccaneers are continuing to put talent around him. He and Mike Evans have great chemistry, and the offense will be balanced with the re-signing of Doug Martin. With all of these pieces, Winston will build off his solid rookie season and keep improving for years to come. All of them have bright futures, and I could make a case for each one here. But I'm going to go with Marcus Peters because of the league's attention to the passing game. The Defensive Rookie of the Year, who tied for the league lead in interceptions with eight last season, can be a shutdown corner, and there aren't many -- if any -- in the NFL right now. He's a guy who provides a relentless pursuit of the football, and his competitive nature is off the charts. I haven't seen many young guys who compete on every play like Peters does. Todd Gurley is the type of athlete who can be in any system, and the system will be based around his skill set. For some of the guys on this list, their stats suffer if their team struggles. But being that Gurley is a dynamic running back, all that Jared Goff (or whoever the Rams' quarterback is) has to do is hand the ball off. Gurley is going to get a lot of carries and continue to dominate as his career progresses. Jameis Winston is the face of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and the organization is going to surround him with the necessary pieces for him to succeed. He's already a natural-born leader, which we saw last season. A lot of people didn't think Winston was going to be as successful as he was in 2015. He works hard and has maturity, and he's only going to go up from here. Marcus Peters, Todd Gurley and Amari Cooper all thrived at their respective positions as rookies because of their skill sets and maturity. They were able to adjust quickly and didn't really play like first-year players at all. That's why it's hard to pick just one of these players.
Peters was able to tie Reggie Nelson for the league lead in INTs last season due to his aggressive playing style. He plays with a chip on his shoulder because he thought he should've been drafted higher. He's in a good system and has a great knack for the football. Gurley's stats are incredible, considering he missed three games and was limited to just six carries in another. I expect his numbers to increase as he gets more comfortable. Cooper was one of the best receivers in the league because of his exceptional route running and ability to make plays. Each of these three guys set the foundation for a great NFL career.