You probably have heard it some in the offseason, at least in the context of talking about the Arizona Cardinals. This season is a make or break season for third year player Kevin Minter. Selected in the second round in the 2013 NFL Draft, some say he has not lived up to his draft status.
He didn't play his rookie year because of Karlos Dansby and he played all 2014 with a torn pectoral muscle.
Some call him a disappointment, but head coach Bruce Arians disagrees.
"I don't think so," he said when asked about whether it is fair to call it a make or break year for the linebacker. "In his package, when he's healthy, he's played really good. He played with one arm last year."
He has been running the defense and has been the three-down linebacker so far in training camp, as Sean Weatherspoon has been out with a hamstring injury. It is the role he wants to prove he can play, but it isn't the role he has to play.
"We didn't draft him to play dime," Arians said. "We brought him here for Seattle and San Francisco to play the run, and in those games, he and Kenny Demens both played good because they are rock-em, sock-em football players. They're not basketball players spread out all over the field."
Minter has looked really good so far in camp. He, now healthy, desires to be an All-Pro level linebacker. He says the coaches are working him to be a three-down linebacker. But Arians is happy with what he offers.
A successful two-down linebacker who can hit, that is what Arians is saying he needs to be. That's what Minter is.
Is it a make or break year? Perhaps, but you aren't hearing that from the team or the coach.