Experience, strength, understanding of a system, maturity and better physical conditioning are among the factors that play into the development from year-to-year for a player.
As the "30 lists in 30 days" series continues, ScarletReport.com looks at the Top 5 players with the most to prove in 2011.
5. Cornerback Logan Ryan: Ryan has tons of talent and now has some experience to go with it after playing in 11 games, including one start, last season. Rutgers coach Greg Schiano said the cornerback spots remain open heading into training camp, which gives Logan the chance to play there. He is 6-feet, 195 pounds, and has the size to play physical, the speed to cover down the field and desire to play physical.
4. Quarterback Chas Dodd: Tom Savage left because, in part, he decided Dodd was the quarterback of the future. Dodd is talented and with a big, big arm, and despite being 6-0, 205 pounds, he finds throwing lanes and sees the field well.
Quarterbacks are judged by their record, and last season Dodd went 2-6 as a starter, although clearly the losses were not pinned on his play. A new system, ore practice time, tons of reps and no experienced quarterbacks behind him put Dodd in a wildly important position.
3. Left guard Desmond Wynn: At times last season Wynn struggled with his strength and quickness, and there was a legitimate reason for it. He missed spring practice in 2010 after shoulder surgery and couldn't lift weights much leading into the season, which impacted his strength.
However, he was able to workout this offseason and was solid in the spring before a moderate knee injury ended his spring. However, he should be ready for training camp and set on proving he can be a high-level player on the offensive line.
2. Placekicker San San Te: The senior is very good inside of 40 yards, making 12 of 13 kicks from 39 yards or closer last season. In fact, Te is 38 of 44 in his career inside 39 yards.
But he was 2 of 7 from 40 yards and beyond in 2010, and 6 of 21 in his career, making long-range accuracy an area of needed improvement. For him to go from being a good kicker to a great one, making the longer kicks is a necessity.
1. Tight end D.C. Jefferson: When Jefferson made the move from quarterback to tight end, his physical talent was obvious, but Schiano said it would take time for the 6-foot-6, 255-pound Jefferson to learn the position.
In the fall, Jefferson will enter his third season at tight end, and will playing in an offense that is proven to use the tight end as a key weapon in the passing game. Last season he made 10 catches for 166 yards and a score, and in offensive coordinator Frank Cignetti's offense, the tight end may reach that number in a game if things go right.