Top Five Offensive Rookie of the Year Candidates

Offfensive Rookie of the Year

With the 2022 NFL season nearing its end, it’s time to start looking at the top Offensive Rookie of the Year candidates. The 2022 NFL Draft has produced quite a few players that have made an immediate impact, but these five players have stood out as the best of the best in a loaded class.

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Five Offensive Rookie of the Year Candidates, Ranked

1. Garrett Wilson

Far and away the favorite for the award, New York Jets wide receiver Garrett Wilson is already playing like one the best at his position, and he’s done it in some pretty unenviable situations. Working with Zach Wilson, Mike White, and Joe Flacco, the Ohio State product currently has 64 receptions for 266 receiving yards and four touchdowns. He’s already the top option in the passing attack, and the sky is the limit if he can get a real quarterback in 2023.

2. Chris Olave

Ohio State has produced the two best offensive rookies in football. While he has slowed down a bit in recent weeks, wide receiver Chris Olave is in the midst of one of the better rookie seasons in recent memory. Primarily catching passes from Andy Dalton, the first-round pick currently has 63 receptions for 940 yards and three touchdowns. Recency bias means that Wilson will likely win the award, but it’s astonishing how similar these two have been overall.

3. Kenneth Walker

The 2022 NFL Draft class has produced several starting-caliber running backs, but Walker is the best of the bunch. Or, at the very least, he’s the best one still standing. After starting his career behind Rashaad Penny, the second-round pick took control of the backfield in Week 6 and never looked back. In 12 games of action, the running back has recorded 696 yards and nine touchdowns on 150 carries (4.6 YPA) to go along with 23 receptions for 148 yards on 31 targets. Walker’s strong play means that Seattle can use their 2023 draft picks to improve the defense.

4. Christian Watson

He’s no Davante Adams, but Christian Watson has done a phenomenal job of earning the trust of Aaron Rodgers and becoming a vital part of the Green Bay Packers passing attack. While he only has 25 receptions and 401 receiving yards, he has a nose for the red zone, as evidenced by his seven touchdowns. Keep in mind that these numbers do not include whatever he does in Week 15, as Green Bay’s battle against the Los Angeles Rams has not yet happened at the time of this posting.

5. Brian Robinson

Adjusting to life in the NFL is hard enough, but Brian Robinson had to do that while also recovering from gunshot wounds. The rookie somehow managed to overcome these incredible odds while also looking like one of the best backs in his class. So far Robinson has played in 10 games while recording 159 carries for 652 yards and two touchdowns and showing notable improvement on a week-by-week basis. While he might not earn too many votes, he undoubtedly proved that he should be Washington’s starter for the foreseeable future.

Honorable Mentions

Injuries are the worst part of football, and the football gods took away two players that would have easily been in the Offensive Rookie of the Year race if it weren’t for bad luck. New York Jets running back Breece Hall took the world by storm to start the season, recording 463 yards and four touchdowns on 80 carries (5.8 YPA) through just seven games before tearing his ACL. Houston Texans running back Dameon Pierce, meanwhile, was Houston’s entire offense before landing on the injured reserve prior to Week 15.