6. CB Eric Stokes
Eric Stokes exceeded expectations as a rookie, even as a first-round pick. At his best, he showed Pro Bowl potential.
According to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network, coaches believe Stokes is a “budding star primed for a big year”.
Initially a backup to begin 2021, Stokes quickly had to step up as the Packers’ CB1 following injuries to Jaire Alexander and Kevin King. And he did just that, finishing the year with 14 pass breakups and one interception.
Quarterbacks had little joy throwing in his direction, with Stokes allowing fewer than half of pass attempts to be completed, per Pro Football Reference.
Even when Stokes was beaten by his wide receiver, he could use all of his 4.31 speed to close the gap.
With his athleticism and speed, Stokes can become a star cornerback in the NFL. He showed a ton of potential in year one, so it is exciting to imagine how good of a player he can become.
To make it even better, Stokes won’t have to match up with WR1s too often this season. That job will mostly belong to All-Pro Jaire Alexander.
Stokes is a player to watch at training camp. A year ago, he was tested regularly against Davante Adams, which would’ve helped speed up his development. Will he show signs of making a big second-year jump?