After becoming the first running back to be selected in the top two picks at the NFL draft since 2006, the New York Giants’ Saquon Barkley is a strong +150 favorite on the Offensive Rookie of the Year odds for the 2018 NFL season at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
In addition to rushing for 1,134 yards and 16 touchdowns during his final season at Penn State, Barkley also racked up 594 receiving yards and caught three scoring passes. The 21-year-old also returned three kickoffs for touchdowns last season, including a spectacular 98-yard return in the Nittany Lions’ 45-14 rout of the Indiana Hoosiers on Sept. 30.
However, Barkley is trailed by a trio of quarterbacks on the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year betting lines, led by Baker Mayfield of the Cleveland Browns at +275, followed by Buffalo’s Josh Allen at +800 and Arizona’s Josh Rosen at +1000.
Mayfield emerged as the top pick at this year’s NFL draft after leading the Oklahoma Sooners to a College Football Playoff berth last season. The 23-year-old threw for multiple scores in each of his 14 appearances with the Sooners in 2017 and ran for five scores while tallying 310 rushing yards. However, Mayfield faces the daunting task of bringing the Browns back to respectability after going 0-16 last season.
Selected seventh overall by the Bills, Allen was limited to just 11 appearances with the Wyoming Cowboys last season, while Rosen was taken 10th overall by the Cardinals following an impressive campaign at UCLA where he threw for 3,717 yards and 10 TDs.
On the other side of the ball, Denver Broncos defensive end Bradley Chubb is set as a +140 favorite on the Defensive Rookie of the Year odds for the upcoming NFL campaign.
Chubb was taken fifth overall by the Broncos after earning 2017 ACC Defensive Player of the Year honors following his senior year with the North Carolina State Wolfpack, during which he tallied 10 sacks and 72 total tackles.
The 21-year-old is trailed on the Defensive Rookie of the Year betting lines by Chicago Bears linebacker Roquan Smith at +400, while Miami Dolphins safety Minkah Fitzpatrick sits knotted with Browns cornerback Denzel Ward at +650.
Smith recorded 137 total tackles with the Georgia Bulldogs last season, garnering SEC Defensive Player of the Year honors, and also was named MVP of the SEC Championship Game.
Fitzpatrick won a pair of national championships with the Alabama Crimson Tide, while Ward was taken fourth overall at the 2018 NFL Draft after ranking Top 10 in the nation with 15 pass breakups in his final season with the Ohio State Buckeyes.
Thumbnail photo via Noah K. Murray/USA TODAY Sports
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