Top 10 NFL breakout players to watch out for during the 2022 season

Green Bay Packers, Allen Lazard, NFL Breakout Players - Samantha Madar/USA TODAY NETWORK-Wis.
Green Bay Packers, Allen Lazard, NFL Breakout Players - Samantha Madar/USA TODAY NETWORK-Wis. /
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NFL Breakout Players
NFL Breakout Players, Kwity Paye, Indianapolis Colts – (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images) /

10 NFL Breakout Players to watch in 2022: Kwity Paye, EDGE, Colts

EDGE. 9. player. 46. Scouting Report. Pick Analysis. Colts. Kwity Paye

We saw Indianapolis Colts pass rusher Kwity Paye really come along during the second half of his rookie season in 2021. The former first-round pick out of Michigan racked up all 10 of his quarterback hits and all four of his sacks as a rookie from Week 9 to the end of the season. Paye has tremendous talent, and heading into his second NFL season, the pressure is really on for him to be a key every-down player in one of the league’s more underrated defenses.

Yannick Ngakoue was acquired by the Colts in a trade with the Las Vegas Raiders this past offseason. Considering Ngakoue is the more proven pass rusher with the Colts, he’s likely to receive a lot of attention from opposing offenses, at least early on. That could lead to a lot of favorable matchups for Paye, who can feast if given one-on-one chances.

I smell a double-digit sack type of season from the former Michigan star.

10 NFL Breakout Players to watch in 2022: Jeff Okudah, CB, Lions

Scouting Report. Pick Analysis. CB. 50. Lions. Jeff Okudah. 8. player

The Detroit Lions are pretty loaded with breakout player candidates this season. It doesn’t matter what side of the ball you look at, this team has every reason to be optimistic heading into a season in which it feels like they are playing with house money. Head coach Dan Campbell has as high of an approval rating as you’ll ever see from a Lions coach. Nobody expects a ton out of the Lions but most agree this is a talented team.

Jeff Okudah is part of that equation, even coming off of two season-ending injuries that have derailed his pro career. Okudah was supposed to be the next great NFL cornerback coming out of Ohio State, but now he finds himself in something of a make-or-break year with the Lions. I tend to believe he’s going to break out in a big way.

We’ve seen him stay healthy throughout the preseason and make some nice plays, but now is the time for Okudah to prove week in and week out that he truly can be a CB1 at the NFL level. If he’s able to stay healthy, he could help take a talented Lions defense to the next level.