Falcons Rising Up In 2014: Desmond Trufant

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

The rookie sensation could be even better in his second year in the NFL.

Many of the choices for this running series have been players who had okay years in 2013, but could improve with more experience and better coaching. Desmond Trufant stands out as a player who was great in 2013 and could be phenomenal next season.

There's plenty of reasons to believe this will occur for the man tabbed as the Rookie of the Year by many publications. Trufant doesn't yet have the best hands, so he dropped a pair of interceptions this season and could have had one more if William Moore hadn't mistakenly destroyed him against the Saints. A little bit of work and a break or two and Trufant's got four-plus interceptions, helping to turn the tide on a couple more drives in 2014. It'll help if Robert Alford makes meaningful gains, because teams won't be targeting Tru's side of the field nearly as often.

Couple that with some gains in coverage skills—Trufant was still caught out of position at times in 2013, even if it was relatively rare—and concentrating on wrapping up when tackling and you've got a player who can be even better than he was in a revelation of a rookie season. Trufant should start being mentioned among the league's best cornerbacks in 2014 if he brings even modest improvement to the table, and he certainly should continue to cause plenty of disrupted passes.

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