I could write a whole article about this kid, but I'll save that for later. Today, I'm pointing the lens at all of this year's rookies. We'll come back to Gurley and his fellow offensive weapons. Let's look at defense.
The Jets defense is even better than usual, thanks to the usual suspects, plus rookie Leonard Williams and coach Todd Bowles. Williams is not quite the monster everybody said he would be, but he has a lot of maturity and makes the Jets complete.
I still can't believe Shane Ray fell to the Broncos, but who cares he was supposed to be a top-3 pick? He's now part of the greatest defense in history. (P.S.: Not the 2013 Seahawks.)
Dante Fowler Jr. was unfortunately injured in the preseason. Vic Beasley has been great for the Falcons so far. Marcus Peters and Ronald Darby are both in the Pro Bowl talk.
So, my top candidates for Defensive Rookie of the Year are:
1: Shane Ray
2: Leonard Williams
3: Vic Beasley
4: Marcus Peters
5: Ronald Darby
Now back to offense. Gurley is the most explosive running back I've ever witnessed. The Rams should not be out of the playoff conversation. As predicted, he has so far refused to wear pink. (See my Mock Draft.)
Amari Cooper is a star for the Raiders. Thanks to him and Derek Carr, the Raiders are reliving the days of Ken Stabler and Fred Biletnikoff. Unlike Biletnikoff, Cooper does it all with NO STICKING. "That's what we call those 50/50 balls," coach Jack del Rio says, referring to a catch Cooper made against the Chargers. "When you have a player with the ability that Amari has, maybe it's a little bit better odds than that." (P.S.: He's on my fantasy team too.)
Marcus Mariota is a future hall of famer who has proven himself throughout the year. His greatest test came when he had to play through an injury. Slowly but surely, he is bringing life to the Titans. (Although, it's too bad that Zach Mettenberger isn't starting somewhere.)
Ameer Abdullah has been a bright spot for the Lions. It's unclear if Jameis Winston is struggling or if he just can't perform well with a team like the Bucs. Maybe he's struggling to keep limits on negativity. Tyler Lockett has turned special teams into a weapon for the Seahawks. And don't forget Matt Jones, workhorse of a resurging Redskins team. (THIS JUST IN: Matt Jones tackled by mob of deranged politically correct Redskins haters, shatters knee, will miss the rest of the season. Just kidding, at least for now…)
Here are my list of Offensive Rookie of the Year candidates:
1: Todd Gurley
2: Amari Cooper
3: Marcus Mariota
4: Ameer Abdullah
5: Tyler Lockett
Thanks for reading! Tonight is the last game of Breast Cancer Awareness Month. This particular NFL tradition just drives me crazy. I keep thinking the coach challenged the play, but it's just some guy who dropped his shoe. Also, why do they blow all this money on pink facemasks and gloves and towels and yada yada yada when they could donate it to a research hospital? Wouldn't it be better to actually help fight cancer instead of raising "awareness" or whatever? Anyway, watch the Dolphins-Patriots game tonight and then it will be over. I'm predicting an upset: 35-28, Dolphins. Please comment or share!