Josh Allen, Gardner Minshew, Other Jaguars Given Low Odds to Win 2020 Superlatives
Aside from a few players earning Pro Bowl nods and former defensive lineman Calais Campbell being named the 2019 Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year, the Jacksonville Jaguars haven't exactly been collectors of end-of-season superlative in recent years.
And if you ask certain oddsmakers, that trend is likely to continue in 2020, with most Jaguars players having low odds to win awards or lead their position in a specific stat.
In odds released by BetOnline, Jaguars players' chances to win Defensive Player of the Year, and odds to lead the NFL in passing yards, receiving yards, or rushing yards are all particularly low following a 6-10 season in 2019.
Second-year defensive end Josh Allen, who earned a trip to the Pro Bowl as a rookie after recording 10.5 sacks, was given 200/1 odds to take home the Defensive Player of the Year award, tied with players such as Malcolm Jenkins, Maxx Crosby, Quinton Dunbar, and Jabrill Peppers.
Meanwhile, Yannick Ngakoue, Allen's running partner from 2019, was given 80/1 odds, a middle of the pack ranking. Ngakoue has the same odds to win the award as Earl Thomas and worse odds than players such as Eric Kendricks, Richard Sherman, Preston Smith, Marcus Peters, Trey Flowers, and Melvin Ingram.
It is a bit surprising to see Ngakoue be given so much better odds than Allen considering Allen had more sacks (10.5 compared to 8), tackles (44 to 41), and quarterback hits (23 compared to 15) than Ngakoue in 2019. The two did each have 11 tackles for loss, while Ngakoue had four forced fumbles compared to Allen having two.
The best reason for Ngakoue's odds being so much higher? Ngakoue is currently a more established NFL player than Allen in the eyes of oddsmakers. Ngakoue has four years of consistent production and now has his name in the media every other day thanks to his trade demands, while Allen has only been in the league for a year. Oddsmakers could also be factoring in the fact that Ngakoue will likely play for another team in 2020, which could give him more exposure and a better chance to win the award.
When it comes to the odds of Jaguars quarterback Gardner Minshew II leading the league in passing yards in his second season, oddsmakers are once again skeptical of the probabilities. Minshew is tied for the 31st-highest odds to lead the NFL in passing at 80/1 odds.
These are the same odds as Jarrett Stidham, who has never started an NFL game, and Drew Lock. The only players Minshew has better odds than are Tyrod Taylor and Dwayne Haskins, each of whom has 150/1 odds. Surprisingly, Minshew has worse odds than Nick Foles (66/1), who Minshew overtook as the Jaguars starting quarterback in 2019 and this offseason.
In terms of leading the league in receiving yards, only one Jaguars player is a sensible option in wide receiver DJ Chark. A year after Chark recorded 1,008 yards and eight touchdowns on his way to a Pro Bowl trip, the third-year wide receiver has been given 40/1 odds to lead the NFL in receiving yards in 2020.
These odds are lower than Zach Ertz, Sterling Sheppard, Jarvis Landry, Emmanuel Sanders, Deebo Samuel, A.J. Green, and others. With how low oddsmakers are on Minshew's ability to produce, it makes sense for Chark to have fairly low odds in his own right, even if he is a better option than a few players with better odds.
Running back Leonard Fournette was actually given the best odds of any Jaguars' player to lead the league in a category. The fourth-year running back was tied for the seventh-best odds at 16/1, tied with Chris Carson, Josh Jacobs, and Joe Mixon. Fournette was seventh in rushing yards in 2019 with 1,152, so this ranking seems on the money.
What do you think about these odds? Were the Jaguars underrated?