NFL players develop at their own pace; not every All-Pro reaches that status from the moment they arrive on the scene. Exploring players still on their rookie contract, I constructed this team of breakouts, which is not to say all of them will reach All-Pro or even Pro Bowl distinction, but that they have an attainable higher level of play.

Without further ado, the breakout team: 

Quarterback: Anthony Richardson, Colts

Richardson had flashes of brilliance but was largely up and down prior to his injury. The reason for confidence stems from head coach Shane Steichen's proficiency as an offensive play-caller, as well as the overall health of the offensive line and skill groups. Those elements alone should give Richardson a fighting chance to take a big leap forward in Year 2. 

Honorable mention: Will Levis, Titans

Running back: Tyjae Spears, Titans

Spears spent most of last season backing up a running back literally and figuratively bigger than life in Nashville. He finished just shy of 500 rushing yards and 400 receiving yards. The team drafted J.C. Latham No. 7 overall and then hired renowned offensive line coach Bill Callahan to guide the unit. The Tulane product finished fourth in tackle avoidance rate among running backs with at least 100 carries last season (26.0%), according to TruMedia. Tennessee did sign Tony Pollard in free agency but that should not scare away those looking to invest in Spears' fantasy future. 

Wide receivers: Dontayvion Wicks, Packers; Drake London, Falcons; Michael Wilson, Cardinals

Wilson ranked in the Top-10 in average depth of target among pass catchers with at least 30 receptions last season, according to TruMedia. Wicks (74.4%) and Wilson (76.3%) each ranked among the Top-10 in percentage of receptions that went for either a touchdown or a first down. Wilson will not have to shoulder as much pressure to carry Arizona's pass game this season now that Marvin Harrison Jr. has arrived. 

The Rams style offense that Zac Robinson is bringing over has always rewarded wide receivers willing to block in space. Going back to my notes from the 2022 NFL Draft, London was a committed blocker, driving his feet on contact in the run game. He became more effective as he added mass to his frame. As Atlanta welcomes its new offense, London is one that stands to benefit the most. 

Honorable mention: Jameson Williams, Lions; Marvin Mims, Broncos

Tight end: Luke Musgrave, Packers

Musgrave missed six games last season and still managed to record 34 receptions for 352 yards and one touchdown in a Packers offense that found itself as the season progressed. Musgrave is the prototypical NFL tight end. Another season in the system, an offseason removed of distraction and, hopefully, a return to full health should allow him to have the type of breakout season that Green Bay expected from him when he was taken No. 42 overall. 

Honorable mention: Kyle Pitts, Falcons; Dalton Kincaid, Bills

Offensive tackles: Broderick Jones, Steelers; Wanya Morris, Chiefs

Most of the NFL's best offensive tackles were taken in the first round of the draft and those players tend to start immediately. Since rookies are not a part of this equation, the pickings are slim. Jones allowed five sacks on 378 pass blocking snaps as a rookie last season, according to TruMedia. The former Georgia Bulldog saw time at right tackle last season but will return to left tackle where he played in college. Combined with the arrival of offensive coordinator Arthur Smith, who facilitated the improvement of multiple offensive linemen during his time in Atlanta, Jones could be on the brink of an outbreak.

Morris has shown NFL talent since his time at Tennessee but his career has been defined by inconsistency to this point. A right tackle at Oklahoma, Morris will now compete with second round pick Kingsley Suamataia for the starting left tackle position. The lack of urgency to sign a veteran in free agency suggests that Kansas City may have more confidence than the general public in protecting Patrick Mahomes' blindside. Last season, the third round pick was beaten on 4.9% of 223 pass blocking snaps, according to TruMedia.

Offensive guards: Peter Skoronski, Titans; Alijah Vera-Tucker, Jets 

Skoronski has settled in at offensive guard in Nashville. He was beaten on just 1.2% of 487 pass protection snaps last season, according to TruMedia. Those numbers do not tell the whole story but the point is that there is a firm foundation on which Callahan can begin to build upon and remodel. Callahan was able to take offensive guard Wyatt Teller from a player acquired for what amounted to late round draft picks to an All-Pro. 

The narrative surrounding Vera-Tucker is similar to that of Carter. He is viewed favorably across the league but availability and not being yanked from one leak in the plumbing to the next should allow him to reach new heights. Colts offensive guard Will Fries would have been the choice opposite Skoronski had it not been for Vera-Tucker. As noted in my piece about profiling NFL All-Pros and projecting who may be next, there is a high correlation between offensive linemen taken in the first round and future success. Skoronski and Vera-Tucker check that box. 

Honorable mention: Will Fries, Colts; Nick Saldiveri, Saints

Center: Cam Jurgens, Eagles

Even though the offensive output took a nosedive in 2023, there is still confidence projecting that unit forward because of offensive line coach Jeff Stoutland's presence. Stoutland is one of the most respected teachers of the position in football and recent retiree Jason Kelce has been pouring knowledge into Jurgens since the latter was drafted in the second round of the 2022 NFL Draft

Honorable mention: Juice Scruggs, Texans

Edge rushers: Odafe Oweh, Ravens; Travon Walker, Jaguars

It is not an ideal time to buy stock in Oweh considering all of the defections from Baltimore's defensive coaching staff. However, he profiles as an impact player at this level. His sack per pressure rate (9.8%) was relatively low compared to his pressure rate (17.2%), so he will have to do a better job finishing plays in 2024. Unfortunately, that was part of the concern coming out of Penn State. The Ravens have earned a reputation of pulling the most out of that group over the years with the likes of Pernell McPhee, Za'Darius Smith and more. 

Walker took his pressure rate up three percentage points and did a better job of finishing plays in a year. The presence of Josh Allen on the opposite side, plus the infusion of veteran defensive tackle Arik Armstead should create even more one-on-one opportunities for the No. 1 overall pick this season. Another year of maturity in the system should lead to improved results. 

Honorable mention: George Karlaftis, Chiefs; Lukas Van Ness, Packers; Yaya Diaby, Buccaneers; Keion White, Patriots

Defensive tackles: Jalen Carter, Eagles; Karl Brooks, Packers

Carter recorded six sacks as a rookie and it seemed as though he was destined for Defensive Rookie of the Year honors. Although Year 1 could be considered a success, there is another level for him to take his game. The ex-Bulldog was credited with 37.2 pass rush pressures by TruMedia, which ranked No. 38 among all players. 

The other spot was a hotly-contested three-horse race between Bears interior defender German Dexter Sr., Steelers interior defender Keeanu Benton and Brooks. Dexter and Brooks had similar pressure rates -- 10.4% and 10.3%, respectively -- whereas Benton is more of a run stuffer. 

Honorable mention: Gervon Dexter Sr., Bears; Keeanu Benton, Steelers

Linebackers: Terrel Bernard, Bills; Christian Harris, Texans

Bernard was thrust into the equation last year when Matt Milano got hurt but he grew into the role. He was a rusher on just 10.6% of opponent dropbacks, according to TruMedia, and still managed 6.5 sacks. Bernard was also fifth among linebackers in defensive passer rating. 

Harris was very inconsistent on his 712 defensive snaps but there were reasons for optimism. Head coach DeMeco Ryans' background is linebacker. With an upgraded talent floor in Houston, there is no reason to believe that Harris will not take another step forward. 

Honorable mention: Malik Harrison, Ravens; Jamin Davis, Commanders; Micah McFadden, Giants; Devin Lloyd, Jaguars

Cornerbacks: Christian Gonzalez, Patriots; Derek Stingley Jr., Texans; Cordale Flott, Giants

Gonzalez was among the league's best rookies until he sustained an injury in October. Although Bill Belichick is gone, Jerod Mayo remains in control of the operation. With his length and collegiate ball production, Gonzalez is well-positioned to bounce back. Stingley's issues have been similar. Over the the course of two seasons, he has six interceptions and 14 games missed. Dating back to his freshman season at Baton Rouge, Stingley has been regarded as a top talent at his position. 

Flott would have been a member of my better than team coming into the draft had I written one, so there is some bias at play here. The reality is that a slot cornerback was needed for this team and the honorable mention cornerbacks and safety profiled more in other roles. Flott is worth a flier as he takes on an expanded role. 

Horn would have an opportunity to make the list if he were able to stay healthy, plus the anticipated Carolina pass rush is not going to instill any amount of fear into its opposition. Emerson is another promising young talent but the lasting memory of the Texans having their way with the Cleveland secondary has taken residence in my mind. 

Honorable mention: Jaycee Horn, Panthers; Martin Emerson, Browns; Zyon McCollum, Buccaneers

Safeties: Kerby Joseph, Lions; Ji'Ayir Brown, 49ers

TruMedia has a metric that measures the passer rating by opposing quarterbacks against coverage players; Joseph ranked third last season (28.0). Emerson, above, was fifth (28.7). Joseph had four interceptions last season, but, with improved talent around him, the Illinois product has the opportunity to put himself in Pro Bowl and All-Pro consideration. 

The depth chart has been cleared for Brown to see more playing time this fall. He played less than 400 defensive snaps in 15 games last season but managed two interceptions. As he gains more experience, his play could take a jump. 

Honorable mention: Dax Hill, Bengals