NFL OROY Odds: Dameon Pierce Makes a Move Up
NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year Odds: Drake London Takes the Early Lead
The NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year Award race is heating up as multiple rookies are showing their promise to be one of the best players in the NFL in the coming years. Let's break down some of the top OROY candidates.
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Romeo Doubs (NFL OROY Odds: +900, Previous: +1000)
Romeo Doubs looked good again on Sunday, catching five of eight targets for 47 yards and his second touchdown in as many weeks. His odds rightly shortened for OROY, but the problem is a few guys were even better, and they jumped Doubs in line, leaving him in fifth this week.
The issue for Doubs will be multi-layered this year if he wants to win Offensive Rookie of the Year. First, other wide receivers like Chris Olave and Drake London are in environments that have much less competition for target share. Doubs ranks 43rd among wide receivers with just a 19.2% target share. And also, the award has gone to a running back or quarterback in 10 of the last 12 years. If a couple of the players ranked ahead of him here have big seasons, it will be too much of a hill to climb for Doubs.
Kenny Pickett (NFL OROY Odds: +800, Previous: Unranked)
Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Kenny Pickett flies up the list this week after he was named the new starter in the Steel City moving forward. We saw a glimpse of his immense upside last week when he rushed for two touchdowns in addition to a decent passing game.
Quarterbacks often get a lot of OROY love, but don't go burning through all your cash just yet. According to NFL Research, Pittsburgh's next seven games will be against teams with a winning record in 2021, the first time a rookie will face a streak like that since 1950. His first start this week comes against the number one defense in the league - the Buffalo Bills - so bet with caution if you're looking for dominance right away.
Dameon Pierce (NFL OROY Odds: +800, Previous: +1200)
Dameon Targaryen isn't the only Dameon mercilessly outmaneuvering his opponents this fall. Texans rookie running back Dameon Pierce just polished off the best game of his young career with 131 rushing yards, six receptions, and a touchdown against a depleted Los Angeles Chargers team. After this performance, it's clear the Texans are going to heavily rely on their new running back and his OROY odds got the necessary bump.
Pierce, who looks like he was criminally underused at the University of Florida, seemingly has the whole package. He already ranks fourth in yards created, fifth in evaded tackles, and ninth in rushing yards this year, according to Player Profiler. After he was essentially shelved for the first game of the season in favor of Rex Burkhead, Pierce has burst out of the gate and now looks like one of the most valuable running backs in the NFL.
Drake London (NFL OROY Odds: +650, Previous: +550)
Drake London loses a decent amount of ground this week after his first bad performance as a professional. London caught only two balls for 17 yards despite being targeted seven times. It was the first time this season London did not have at least 74 yards or a touchdown in a game.
But considering the Falcons just lost their starting running back to injury (Cordarelle Patterson), there could be more usage coming London's way in future games. Atlanta seems unwilling to use uber-athletic Kyle Pitts in the passing game, which leaves as much of the pie available for London as he wants. I still pick London to win this award in 2022, which makes his odds lengthening all the more appealing this week.
Chris Olave (NFL OROY Odds: +500, Previous: +550)
After checking in at second on this list last week, Olave leapfrogs up to the top on the back of a third straight game with great usage plus his first touchdown. Against the Vikings in London this past Sunday, Olave hauled in four catches for 67 yards and a score. Even on a day when the Saints were without Jameis Winston and Alvin Kamara, Olave was able to keep the Saints in the game they eventually lost 25-28.
Although he is just a rookie, Olave already leads all receivers in air yards (699, 188 more than second), is ninth in receiving yards (335), and is top 20 in target share (25.9%). This New Orleans team looks like a squad that is prioritizing the pass more than in years past. They currently rank eleventh in the NFL in pass rate at over 63%. With that trend looking likely to continue, Olave deserves his bump up, presently taking the OROY torch from Drake London.
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Proudest husband and dad you will ever find. When I'm not with my wife and two kids I split my time working in higher ed, grinding DFS and season-long, collecting silver age comics, studying behavioral economics, and drinking coffee. I once played Pat Connaughton in an actual NBA DFS lineup for money. Astros, Rockets, and Texans for life.