Who Will Be The 2018 NFL Rookie Of The Year? Prediction, Odds For Barkley, Mayfield, Rosen, Darnold, Others

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When it comes to the NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award, it may be hard to overlook some of the talent in New York. After forgettable seasons, the New York Giants and the New York Jets landed top offensive weapons in the draft and both first-round picks could be ready to thrive in their first season.

According to oddsmakers, the Giants landed the more promising player for the 2018 season. Running back Saquon Barkley has been given the strongest odds of taking the award at +140, according to BetOnline. The former Penn State star is the most hyped Giants rookie rusher in years and will likely get the bulk of the Giants’ carries and behind a revamped offensive line that includes new additions Nate Solder and the No. 34 overall pick Will Hernandez. 

Jets’ quarterback Sam Darnold is tied for the seventh-best odds at +1,600. But the No. 3 overall pick looked sharp in his preseason debut, leading to speculation that he could see time ahead of established signal callers Teddy Bridgewater and Josh McCown. Should Darnold get the nod, his odds are expected to surge.

Baker Mayfield, the No. 1 overall pick, has the second-best odds (+400). But like Darnold, there remains a decent chance the athletic quarterback sits behind a veteran. After years of struggles, the Cleveland Browns appear to be on the right track and may feel more comfortable with 29-year-old Tyrod Taylor or 34-year-old Drew Stanton than take a gamble on a rookie like Mayfield. 

Two other quarterbacks are also in the mix. The Arizona Cardinals’ Josh Rosen and the Baltimore Ravens’ Lamar Jackson, both first first-round picks, each has +900 odds. Rosen, who had generated consideration for the No. 1 overall pick, will challenge Sam Bradford for the starting job. Jackson, however, is expected to be on the bench behind starter Joe Flacco.

Josh Allen, who like Rosen was also in consideration for the top pick, has +1,200 odds. The Buffalo Bills will likely give Allen a strong look at the starting quarterback job, though A.J. McCarron seems like the favorite. 

Seattle Seahawks running back Rashaad Penny, who rushed for 2,248 yards in 13 games for San Diego State in 2017, has +1,400 odds. The Seahawks may be a team in transition in a division that includes the NFC contending Los Angeles Rams and San Francisco 49ers.

Joining Darnold with +1,600 odds are Atlanta Falcons wide receiver Calvin Ridley, Washington Redskins running back Derrius Guice and New England Patriots running back Sony Michel. 

Prediction: While this quarterback class is certainly intriguing, none of the first-round picks are locks to be a starter in 2018. With a new head coach and a bolstered offensive line, the Giants will rely heavily on the talented Barkley, who looks ready to be a star. Expect Barkley to rush for 1,000 yards and take the ROY honors.

2018 NFL Offensive Rookie Of The Year Betting Odds (BetOnline)

Saquon Barkley +140 

Baker Mayfield +400  

Josh Rosen +900        

Lamar Jackson +900   

Josh Allen +1200        

Rashaad Penny +1400

Calvin Ridley +1600    

Derrius Guice +1600  

Sam Darnold +1600   

Sony Michel +1600    

Royce Freeman +1800           

Christian Kirk +3300   

Courtland Sutton +3300        

DJ Moore +3300        

James Washington +3300      

Ronald Jones +3300    

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