Philadelphia Eagles 2013 Potential Breakout Players

2 of 3

Dec 13, 2012; Philadelphia, PA, USA; Philadelphia Eagles defensive tackle Fletcher Cox (91) celebrates a sack during the third quarter against the Cincinnati Bengals at Lincoln Financial Field. The Bengals defeated the Eagles 34-13. Mandatory Credit: Howard Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Second Year–Fletcher Cox, DL

Fletcher Cox is a defensive lineman with big time potential. In his rookie season, the 6’4″ 298 pound tackle had 39 tackles, 5.5 sacks, four passes knocked down, and a forced fumble for the Eagles, and they are ecstatic about his future. I graded Cox as one of the top defensive players in the class of 2012, and it’s funny how this works out, but he and Cedric Thornton–another breakout candidate–were both perfect fits for the 3-4 defensive alignment coming out of college, and they wound up playing in a four-man front.

I think in year two, Cox will be able to play with a boat load more confidence, and he can emerge as one of the most disruptive defenders in the league. I don’t know that he quite has J.J. Watt potential, but I definitely see this guy heading to Hawaii a few times in his career.

If he can build off of that rookie season, and continue to utilize his pass rushing skills from the five technique position in Philly, this defense has a chance to be something special as he continues to blossom. This was a great pick by the Eagles a year ago, and Cox is set to become one of the top defensive linemen in the NFL before too long.