With training camp around the corner, there are quite a few players on the team ready to make a leap in their progression as athletes in the National Football League. At BillsMafia.com, we picked 10 players poised to break out and produce at a high level.
Stay tuned throughout the next few weeks as we breakdown the 10 Buffalo Bills that are poised for breakout years in 2013!
Torell Troup has had a rough road since being selected with the No. 41 overall pick in the 2010 NFL draft. The 25-year old was placed on injured reserve in both the 2011 and 2012 season following a major back surgery that he underwent in December of 2011.
On the John Murphy Show, Troup said “There was a disc protruding through my nerves and I could feel it all the way down through my legs.”
While the Bills have a plethora of interior defensive lineman on the roster now in Marcell Dareus, Kyle Williams and Alan Branch, Troup, if healthy, could play a pretty big role heading into his fourth season.
Troup is a massive man, standing 6’3” and weighing 330 pounds, and has the ability to be an effective nose tackle in a 3-4 defensive front. He showed promise in his rookie season, recording 23 tackles and batting down two passes in just 303 snaps of play.
Since then, Troup has battled through a serious back injury and noted that he may have tried coming back too soon after his surgery.
Troup was selected with the second round pick heading into the 2010 season when the team was shifting towards a 3-4 defensive scheme. Now, after dabbling with the 4-3 for a year, the team is moving back to a 3-4 “hybrid” front under new defensive coordinator Mike Pettine.
Pettine’s scheme calls for rotation all throughout the front seven and if he’s 100%, Troup can finally show that he was worthy of his second round draft status.
In the interview with John Murphy, Troup stated that the team was going to be employing more one-gap technique on the defensive line, rather than a typical two-gap system that many people think of when referring to a 3-4 front.
Two gapping calls for the defensive linemen to simply occupy two gaps, taking on multiple blockers, in order to free up space for the linebackers to make plays. On the other hand, one-gapping is a more “attacking” scheme, as the defensive linemen are responsible for one “gap” or blocker, in what is more of a man-to-man style of play.
Troup is very agile and quick for his size, which will definitely be an asset for the team as Coach Pettine will have to find a way to rotate in four or five players who could all flourish at nose tackle in Williams, Branch, Dareus and Troup.
While Troup will certainly be a reserve or a backup, the rotation will call for him to play a significant amount of snaps.
The key for Troup isn’t ability; it’s health. If his back is ready to go, he should be able to produce in a more natural scheme. He isn’t worried about being released either, as he explained to John Murphy.
“The front office wanted me here. They wanted me to be back here and didn’t think cutting or releasing me was in the best interest of the team or myself.”
So while Troup won’t necessarily be a starter, the 2013 season could be one where he can begin to prove the doubters and naysayers wrong.