It's quite rare for a non quarterback to win NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year. It's even more unique to see a wide receiver win the award as Odell Beckham Jr. back in 2014 was the last to earn the title.
LSU's Justin Jefferson came close a season ago but even a historic 1,400-yard, seven touchdown rookie year from him wasn't enough to surpass Los Angeles Chargers quarterback Justin Herbert. And with five quarterbacks taken in the first half of the 2021 first round, there are many first year quarterbacks expecting to see opportunity on the field this season.
In the early odds for rookie of the year released by Vegas Insider, Cincinnati Bengals receiver Ja'Marr Chase pulled in 11/1 odds while Carolina Panthers' Terrace Marshall was given 50/1 odds to win the award.
Here's a look at some of the players at the top of the list:
Trevor Lawrence- 3/1
Justin Fields- 6/1
Trey Lance- 6/1
Zach Wilson- 7/1
Najee Harris- 10/1
Chase and Marshall's success will be widely dependant on their quarterbacks getting them the ball. While Joe Burrow expects to be ready for week one of the NFL season, how long it takes to get back to a point where he can develop that chemistry with Chase will ultimately be telling.
The Biletnikoff Award winner has his sights set on a tremendous rookie year, setting the bar extremely high in his introductory press conference with the Bengals media.
"I want to win rookie of the year," Chase said. "I want to have 10 touchdowns and at least 1,500 yards."
With Tee Higgins and Tyler Boyd being major components of this offense as well as running back Joe Mixon, the ball won't be force fed to Chase but he has experience not being the only stud of an offense. In an offense with Jefferson, Marshall and Clyde Edwards-Helaire, it was Chase that set the SEC record for touchdowns in a season.
As for Marshall, with new quarterback Sam Darnold in town, he'll be a nice redzone and vertical weapon for the Panthers offense that struggled to make explosive plays.
"One of the things Joe Brady said when I got here was that he asked me was I ‘ready to go’, and I told him yeah," Marshall said. "From here on out, it is strictly business. And I can’t wait to get started.
"It is pretty much all similar. That was one thing (Brady) was telling me when we talked. I will be very familiar with it. It might be different terminology, but more the most part I will be able to catch on quick."