The 2022–23 season is set to begin and, like always, the conversations around the Offensive Rookie of the Year — one of the most exciting award races in the sport — are almost impossible to ignore. After all, rookies play a huge role in shaping the season. Here, we’re delving into everything you need to know about the honor, including our top contenders for Offensive Rookie of the Year this season.
What Is the Offensive Rookie of the Year Award?
Voted on by a panel of 50 writers, the annual award is given to the best offensive rookie of the given National Football League (NFL) season. Rookie quarterbacks (QB), running backs (RB) and wide receivers (WR) all qualify for the honor, so whoever puts up the best stats — something that’s not often associated with rookies in any sport — usually claims the title.
The Offensive Rookie of the Year award differs from other honors in that it’s less predictable. Take the NFL MVP Award, for example. Usually, that title goes to a quarterback, with few exceptions. As you might imagine, this makes Offensive Rookie of the Year a more exciting race to watch.
How to Determine NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year
When it comes to predicting rookies’ seasons, history shows that predicting who will end up on top, statistically, is pretty challenging. For instance, QB Trevor Lawrence was a favorite entering the 2021–22 season, but, after a chaotic first year, ultimately lost the award to WR Ja’Marr Chase.
Sometimes, it’s just that unpredictable. While predictions are often based on raw talent and stats rookies are expected to post based on their playing history, what happens on the field can look wildly different. After all, a rookie season does mark a player’s first time in the big leagues. However, it can be helpful to look at a few trends when it comes to picking the season’s Offensive Rookie of the Year frontrunners.
Here are some stats to note:
Chase became the first WR to nab the award since 2014 — and only the fourth over the last 23 seasons.
The last time an RB won the award was in 2007.
No tight end (TE) or offensive lineman (OL) has ever won the award.
In total, 10 quarterbacks have won the award since its inception in 1967, with QBs taking the award home eight times over the past 16 seasons.
Based on the trends above, it looks like the odds are with rookie quarterbacks, right? Well, with many promising candidates all over the gridiron, it’s hard to tell. But here are our top picks for NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year for the 2022–23 season.
Top 2022–23 NFL Rookie of the Year Candidates
7. Treylon Burks (WR), Tennessee Titans