Early Look at NFL Rookie of the Year Candidates

5 NFL Rookies with the Right Teams to be the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year

The NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award is a very exclusive award that can (obviously) only go to one player annually. Not only does this award speak to the talent of the player that receives it, but it also verifies that the front office of that franchise made one of the smartest picks in the draft. The following players have been lucky enough to land in the right situation to maximize their talents.

1. Andrew Luck QB Indianapolis Colts | Odds- 5:1

Andrew Luck is one of the most exciting young prospects to enter the draft in recent memory. Not only does Luck have a prototypical quarterback frame, (6’4” 235 lbs.) but he also brings rare athleticism and decision making to the table. With the offensive weapons around him in Indianapolis I don’t think that it is a stretch to think that he could put up numbers similar to last year’s ROY winner Cam Newton.

2. Robert Griffin III (Aka RG3) QB Washington Redskins | Odds- 11:2

The former Baylor Bear will be heading into a good situation in Washington. He already has the fans on his side, and the Redskins seem to have given him a fair bit of firepower at the WR position with Pierre Garcon and Josh Morgan. The only reason I think that Andrew Luck will have more impact on the field than RG3, is because I believe that the Colts drafted better offensively than the Redskins.

While Luck may be slightly more productive, you would be hard pressed to find a more charismatic leader than RG3. This is a guy who was projected by the draft expert Todd McShay as a WR at the beginning of the 2012 season and pushed himself to become the second overall pick. After a year or two in the league I think he will become one of the clear faces of the NFL and he may even bring the Redskins some much needed wins along the way.

3. Kendall Wright WR Tennessee Titans | Odds- 10:1

This is a perfect example of why the right team can help a player’s chance to succeed.  Kendall Wright has the ability to play either in the slot or as a receiver on the outside. That diversity is a huge wild card that could help him see more playing time than a rookie that can only play the slot or the X/Y positions.

Another important thing to look at is Tennessee Titans Offensive Coordinator Chris Palmer’s success with rookie pass catchers in the past as mentioned by ESPN’s Paul Kuharsky. If Kendall Wright can fight off injuries and get into a rhythm with whoever wins the starting QB job in Tennessee, he could have a huge impact next year.

Finally, during the 2011 NFL season three receivers had more than 1500 receiving yards. Of those three receivers, two (Welker, Cruz) have comparable play style to Kendall Wright. Comparisons don’t make the player, but I believe those numbers are indicative of a change in the NFL where teams are leaning more heavily on the smaller and quicker inside receivers instead of the 6’4” behemoths on the outside.

4. Michael Floyd WR Arizona Cardinals | Odds- 15:1

I just made a point about how I believe the NFL game is moving to a more over-the-middle focused passing league, however this may be one of the two exceptions to the rule. Calvin Johnson of the Detroit Lions and Larry Fitzgerald of the Arizona Cardinals are the two most brilliant receivers in the league and I truly believe that if you were going to try to neutralize them you would need at least a double team to do that.

With that being said, if Michael Floyd is on the other side of the offense I think we could see an offense reminiscent of the 2008 NFC Champion Cardinals in place here. Floyd is tough and knows how to get the ball in run with it. If Arizona had a top 20 QB here I would have had him as 8:1-ish odds here, but with Kevin Kolb and John Skelton on the roster I had to drop it pretty heavily.

5. Matt Kalil LT Minnesota Vikings | Odds- 50:1

As far as having an impact on a team’s win/loss total, Kalil is second only to Andrew Luck. Kalil will have to face Julius Peppers, Shea McClellin, Clay Mathews, Nick Perry, Cliff Avril, and Kyle Vanden Bosch within his division alone! If he lets any of them beat him there is a good chance that second-year QB Christian Ponder either has to take a tough hit or misses his intended receiver on a play.

If the passing part of the offense wasn’t enough of a worry, Pro-Bowl running back Adrian Peterson is coming off of an ACL injury. I think it is fair to assume that he won’t be able to carry the team like he has in past years.

But if Kalil does succeeded maybe Jared Allen can cause enough havoc on the other side of the ball that the Vikings can get to a .500 record. If not they could easily end up picking in the top 5 again, and may have to shop for a new QB. No pressure though Matt.

About Will Lomas

Grew up in a town in Tennessee named Dyersburg, and played ball there. When I realized I was too small to play college ball, I found my passion in breaking down game film, analyzing athletes, and finding the little things that decides whether a player is good, bad, or great.


  1. Detroit Lions Fan :

    I think it[‘ll be RGIII, he had better college production as far as stats are concerned, he’s just as bright if not brighter than Luck and he’s going to a better team.

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