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Look For Rams’ Running Back Tre Mason To BREAKOUT In 2015

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Tre Mason secured his spot atop the St. Louis Rams’ depth chart at running back in 2014. He’s going to take it to another level this year...

Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports
It happens every season.  Without fail, a young NFL player shocks the world by playing at a level that far exceeded expectations heading into the season.  While the potential may have always been there, it’s the young star's ability to execute on Sundays that provides the league with it’s next "breakout" player.

Field Yates, over at ESPN, highlighted eight second year NFL players who could have a breakout season [Insider] in 2015.  Number three on that list is St. Louis Rams’ running back Tre Mason...
A crowded backfield in St. Louis eventually sorted itself out in 2014, as Mason emerged as the go-to player down the stretch, leading the team with 765 yards in 12 games played. "He has good vision and patience, good feet quickness and burst through the hole, good contact balance and will earn extra yards because of his toughness and keeping his feet moving until he is taken to the ground," said one NFL personnel man of Mason.

Heading into the 2014 season there was much talk of a running-back-by-committee approach to the Rams’ rushing attack that was set to feature a heavy dose of Mason and then-sophomore Zac Stacy.  As the offseason progressed, rumors swirled that Mason may even be able to snag the starting role from Stacy, who had an impressive rookie campaign [in 2013] of his own.

And that’s ultimately what occurred.  It wasn’t until mid-October that Mason took the reigns, but he’d go on to lead the team in carries [179. Stacy - 76], yards [765. Stacy - 293], and touchdowns [4. Stacy - 1]. Mason played in only 12 games in his rookie season, so it’s fair to assume he could’ve eclipsed the 1,000-yard threshold had he started the year as the team’s go-to back.

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For those without In$ider, the other seven candidates Yates tabbed for a breakout sophomore season are:  Teddy Bridgewater, Carlos Hyde, Aaron Lynch, Joel Bitonio, Demarcus Lawrence, Allen Robinson, and Stephon Tuitt.

Other Rams' rookies the from last season who could breakout in 2015:  Greg Robinson, Lamarcus Joyner, Maurice Alexander, E.J. Gaines, Demetrius Rhaney.  Sorry Aaron Donald, you’re a pro bowler who doesn’t like to waste a season before breaking out.