After 7 weeks of the 2020 NFL season that has been filled with chaos, uncertainty, injuries, and unlikely stars we’ll breakdown some of the standouts from the first part of the season. Tom Brady is proving that Bill Belichick needed Tom more than Tom needed him. And Alex Smith, how can we not talk about Alex Smith. To watch him take his first snap under center after 17 surgeries. Smith not only nearly lost his leg but nearly lost his life with a nasty, post-op infection. We’ve got one more undefeated team left led by a 38 year QB. It’s been a fun but a very sad season at the same time for Kickers, injuries, and the NFC East.
Defensive Rookie of The Year
This was a NFL-ready rookie class. Now, in week 7 we’ll predict who takes this award. Players to win the award as rookies include Nick and Joey Bosa, Aaron Donald, Von Miller, and Ndamukong Suh. Since we all know defense wins championships we’ll start on that side of the ball and Ohio State standout Chase Young and the Washington Football Team. Chase Young has been the best thing to happen to Washington Football in the past 10 years. Chase Young will be the next generational defensive player in football and he has already changed that defense’s mentality.
Honorable Mention: Kenneth Murray- LB- Chargers, Derrick Brown- DT- Panthers
Offensive Rookie of the Year
There is no question the biggest surprise is also the Offensive Rookie of the Year, Justin Herbert. Is this is a Bias opinion? Yes, very much but the argument lies in his numbers and that he wasn’t supposed to see the field as a rookie. However, a rare puncture wound from the team Dr. gave him his shot and so far the rookie looks like a 5 year veteran. He has a “live” arm which means he can zip it into pretty much any window on a field. His 31 yard run on Sunday was the longest run by a Chargers QB since 1988.
- Since 1970, Herbert is the only rookie QB with 1,500 yards and a 100+ passer rating in his first 5 career games.
- 1st Chargers QB with 3+ TD passes and 1+ rushing TD in a game since Dan Fouts in 1983.
- 1st Rookie since 1950 to throw for 250+ yards in his first 5 starts. (Mahomes didn’t start his rookie year, for those that might think he’s in the mix)
- Week 7, Herbert became the first Chargers QB to lead his team in Rushing and Passing.
Honorable Mention: Justin Jefferson Jr., Joe Burrow, Clyde Edwards-Helaire
Offensive Player of the Year
There are some contenders for this one. An offensive weapon should be dual-threat. Like a Christian McCaffery-type of player. Alvin Kamara can run between the tackles, he can run outside but he’s got hands and feet like a wide receiver. He’s got 46 catches through the first 7 weeks, which is good for 5th in the league. Keep in mind he’s a running back.
Honorable Mention: Derrick Henry, Kyler Murray, Dalvin Cook
Defensive Player of the Year
Until you can stop Aaron Donald he will be the Defensive Player of the Year (DPOY). No real bold prediction he’s won the award 2 out of the last 3 years. Donald has faced nothing less than a double team on every play for the past 3 years. He’s 2nd in the league in sacks with 8 after 7 weeks while playing on the inside not on the outside like normal sack artists. Donald is athletically gifted enough to play on the outside if he really wanted to. He can wreck the game from multiple places along the line. To do that against a double team every play is crazy. Myles Garrett is in the mix as well and is leading the NFL with 9 sacks but like I said. Donald is doing his damage from the inside and against 2-3 guys a play. So yeah, he’s still going to get the award!
Honorable Mention: TJ Watt (Steelers) , Myles Garrett (Browns), Budda Baker (Cardinals)
Comeback Player of the Year
This award should already be in the books. Alex Smith doesn’t need to play another play this season and he should win this award. The quote above his from the Dr. to Elizabeth Smith after one of the worst football injuries you’ll ever see. Post-surgery he developed an infection in his leg called Necrotizing fasciitis, which is a flesh-eating bacteria. It was nearly two years ago that he was tackled against the Texans in 2018. The fact that Smith made his return against the Rams and you know who is on the other side. Yes, Aaron Donald. The good thing is Alex Smith’s body can take a hit still and he showed that by being sacked 6 times, including an Aaron Donald sack. Smith is the toughest man we’ve seen and his comeback is one of the greatest stories and we need something to feel good about in 2020.
Honorable Mention: Ben Roethlisberger, Cam Newton, Jason Verrett
Coach of the Year
Anytime you think you are safe as a Head Coach, think again. The Chargers proved that to be true when they fired Marty Schottenheimer after a 14-2 record. This year there are some coaches worthy of the award. Mike Vrabel has the Titans at 5-1. I have Mike Vrabel losing the award to Mike Tomlin, the only man to beat Vrabel this season. Through the first 7 weeks Mike Tomlin has the Steelers perfect. Pete Carrol also gets some consideration but that is due in large part to Russ Wilson and Carson carrying them to wins because that defense is horrid.
Honorable Mention: Bruce Arians (Buccaneers), Pete Carrol (Seahawks), Kliff Kingsbury (Cardinals)
Best Offseason Acquisition
Without question Deandre Hopkins to the Arizona Cardinals was the best offseason acquisition. He’s leading the league in receptions and yards in his first year in the desert. Depending on which side you are viewing this trade. If you live in the Houston area this would be the biggest disappointment. For Hopkins, the Touchdowns will come. Selfishly, Kyler Murray has been running them in from everywhere. Other contenders would be Tom Brady, Michael Davis for the Panthers, and Stefon Diggs for the Bills, who is 3rd in the NFL in catches and 4th in yards.
Other Notables: Stefon Diggs (Vikings to Bills-Trade), Tom Brady, Michael Davis (Cut by a few teams now with the Panthers)
2020 has been one giant disappointment but if we’re focusing on football the Vikings and Falcons are easily the biggest disappointments. The Falcons have blown countless leads and have one of the best passing games in the NFL. Matty Ice is number 2 in the NFL in passing yards with 2,181, 12 TD and only 3 interceptions. However, that means nothing when you start the season 1-6 and fire the head coach. The Vikings are in a similar situation with their 1-5 start with the league’s number 2 rusher, Dalvin Cook and Adam Thielen both have 7 TDs a piece. Both defenses have been incredibly disappointing. It’s a tie on this one! You can throw the Texans into that mix as well. The whole NFC East as well.
Honorable Mention: Minnesota Vikings, Houston Texans, The NFC East
The last time Tom Brady was considered the “Biggest Surprise” was in 2001 when he made his 1st start. Now, in year 21 he’s lighting it up once again with Bruce Arians and a star-studded cast around him including his longtime TE Gronkowski. Brady is number 6 in the NFL in passing yards, he’s number 2 in TDs with 18 and only 4 interceptions with a passer rating of 102.7. Not bad for a guy that is 43 years old. Having all those weapons definitely helps.
Honorable Mention: Tennessee Titans, Pittsburgh Steelers, Michael Davis
There are 3 players that have a chance to take down Russell Wilson. He left the window open with his 3 interception game against the Cardinals. However, he’s a winner and will bounce back strong. He is still leading the NFL with 22 TD passes and 6 interceptions. Patrick Mahomes, Aaron Rodgers, and Tom Brady all have a chance to take down Russell Wilson. Josh Allen would have been on this list but he’s come back to earth the past few weeks after a hot start. With what Wilson’s done already he’s on the fast track for the award and he deserves it rightfully. Nobody and I mean nobody means more to their team than Russ.
Honorable Mention: Tom Brady, Aaron Rodgers, Patrick Mahomes
Plays of the Year
Derrick Henry Stiff Arm
Deandre Hopkins Takes a Hit and Holds on for One-Handed Body Catch
Keenan Allen Needs More Love…
Baker Has Re-Discovered His Swag