By: NFL Bettors Connect Staff
The NFL draft brings much anticipation and many expectations. That does not end when the draft is over. Fans and coaching staff alike put the pressure on rookies to perform up to expectations and the level of play they exhibited on the college football field. Add oddsmakers to the list of those expectations and with that Bovada Sportsbook has some ideas on who will be the NFL offensive rookie of the year.
According the leading online bookmaker, three rookies are your top odds getters for the offensive player of the year award. Jacksonville’s Leonard Fournette is posted at (+400) at Bovada. This figures as running backs have the easiest adjustment to the game coming out of college. Outside of picking up blitzes, the majority of what running backs do is a product of instincts. Fournette was a monster in college when he was healthy. That second part is what makes him a risk at +400. Fournette is a tad prone to injury due to his running style and it would not be a surprise to see him miss a game or two this season. Add to that, the Jaguars are not NFL royalty and trying to shine on this franchise could have it’s challenges.
Christian McCaffery also is listed at +400 in the latest odds at Bovada. McCaffery was the darling heading into the pre-draft festivities and remained so out of the combine and into the draft itself. The expectations for the Stanford product are monumental at this point. One should be excited by the dimension he brings to the Carolina offense and if you used correctly, we all witnessed what he could do in his Pac-10 career. His diversity makes him a good bet. However, expectations are a difficult thing. Perhaps the public at large expects too much from McCaffery and often times that can break down a rookie mentally. Can McCaffery stand up under the weight of those expectations.
Finally, Houston’s Deshaun Watson is also at +400. Watson starred for three years at Clemson and played big in big games for the Tigers. His ability to show up for the big games makes him an attractive wager. However, Watson must first win the starting QB job because it’s not just being handed to him. If Watson fails to begin the year as the starter then winning the offensive rookie of the year award becomes problematic. Should he win the training camp battle, Watson has potential. Being a NFL rookie QB presents a wide array of challenges and folks should not use Dak Prescott as the model. Houston despite it’s close proximity to Dallas is not the Cowboys.
Our dark horse in this race is Deshone Kizer if you are into long odds. Reports out of training camp is that the Notre Dame product is flashing signs of brilliance. No one is expecting much out of this Cleveland franchise. If Kizer can win the starting job and lead this team to a win total that surpasses last year’s or the previous couple of seasons, he will be lauded by the media. As you know, awards are a popularity contests. Cleveland’s starting QB will have a few more weapons to work with this season and an improved defense could provide help in improving their previous records. Kizer’s odds sit at +1600. That’s a nice pay day if you don’t mind the risk.Follow @nflpredictor12