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Stock Up, Stock Down: Marqise Lee, Devonta Freeman, Teddy Bridgewater Rising

Sam Spiegelman looks at the top rookies turning heads in training camp and making the case for a starting job with the preseason on the horizon.

Teddy Bridgewater
Teddy Bridgewater

Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Throughout NFL training camps, we’ve provided a daily dose of the five biggest headlines each morning. But while news varies from day to day, there have also been players continually receiving praise.

With about a week of camp in the books, here are four players who have continued to see their stock rise with the preseason on the horizon:

Marqise Lee

The Jaguars won’t have Justin Blackmon in 2014, but making the case to be the new No. 1 wide receiver is the second-round pick Lee.

Lee has lined up “all over the field” during camp as the coaches have tried to find ways to put the ball in his hands. This is probably how the team envisioned using Denard Robinson.

Lee’s role in Jacksonville is drawing comparisons to how Percy Harvin has been used in Minnesota and Seattle — not only as a wide receiver but an athlete with big-play ability.

Devonta Freeman

With Steven Jackson sidelined with another hamstring injury, Freeman is making a case to steal some of the veteran’s snaps.

Freeman’s pass-catching ability has drawn the attention of the coaching staff, forcing running backs coach Gerald Brown to say Freeman will be “a really good receiver for us.

Jacquizz Rodgers is also in the mix for carries, but Freeman’s stock is on the way up, especially as a third-down back in pass situations.

Teddy Bridgewater

Unlike the Browns and Jags, who are saying Brian Hoyer and Chad Henne, respectively, are the starters, the Vikings’ quarterback race remains open. And the rookie is “closing the gap.”

Bridgewater has been splitting first-team reps with Matt Cassel and is reportedly closing the gap for the starting job.

Zac Stacy

For all the talk about rookie Tre Mason seeing a big role in the Rams backfield, forget about it.

Second-year player Stacy is getting most of the first-team reps and is looking as if he’s the clear-cut starter. Last year, Stacy emerged out of a backfield that included Isaiah Pead, Daryl Richardson, and Benny Cunningham.

The “running back competition” is now being chalked up to “coachspeak.”

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