The NFL Honors are awards presented by the National Football Association to its players for their success and hard work during the season. This year the ceremony will take place on Saturday at Straz Center in Tampa, Florida. Here is a list of predicted winners during the NFL Honors on Saturday night:
Defensive Rookie of the Year- Chase Young
Chase Young has had one of the most impressive seasons as a rookie this season. With 7.5 sacks, 44 total tackles and 12.5 tackles for loss, Young is a top runner to take Defensive Rookie of the Year for 2020. The Washington Football Team drafted Young from Ohio State as the second overall pick, behind Joe Burrow during the 2020 NFL Draft. He was monstrous with the Buckeyes and was chosen by many experts before the season to be rookie of the year.
Young’s performance has improved as the season went on. He was named both rookie of the month and defensive player of the month of December for his excellent performance during the last few weeks of the season. Only at 21-years old, Young has more to improve and more experience to gain, however he is still one of the best defensive players in the NFL and a guarantee pick for Defensive Rookie of the Year in 2020.
Offensive Rookie of the Year- Justin Herbert
After Chargers team doctor punctured the lung of starting quarterback Tyrod Taylor, sixth overall draft pick from Oregon Justin Herbert took over as starting quarterback and he did not look back. Since taking over for Taylor, he totaled 4,336 passing yards, 31 touchdown passes and a 66.6 completion rate. Despite not having a winning season for the Chargers, Herbert impressed many Chargers fans and gave them hope for the future.
Herbert along with Joe Burrow are the top two candidates for Offensive Rookie of the Year. Burrow and the Bengals did not a great season, ending the year with a 4-11-1 record. Unfortunately, Burrow’s season ended abruptly when he tore his ACL during Week 11 of the season against the Washington Football Team. It will be a neck and neck race for rookie of the year, however Herbert had better numbers on the season that gives him the edge for the award.
Defensive Player of the Year: T.J Watt
J.J Watt has won defensive player of the year three times in his career. Now his younger brother T.J is the top candidate for the award. Watt led the league in sacks with 15 and tackles for loss with 26. He has already been named AFC Defensive Player of the Year and NFL Defensive Player of the Year could be next for Watt.
During the Steelers 11-game winning streak, the defense only allowed an average of 17 points per game. Though their offense were not as strong most game, it was the defense that got the wins and Watt was the front runner of the defensive line. Watt’s only competitor for the award would be defensive tackle Aaron Donald. Donald also had a great year for the Rams, however Watt has the edge over Donald because of his contribution to the Steelers defense in 2020.
Offensive Player of the Year: Derrick Henry
Anybody who had Derrick Henry on their fantasy team this season must have had a good season. Henry had a record-breaking season by ending the year with a total of 2,027 rushing touchdowns, which is the fifth most ever in NFL history for a single season. He also had the league’s best 17 rushing touchdowns. Henry was explosive, fast, and made it very hard for opposing teams’ defenders to stop. During Week 6 Henry ran for 94-yards against the Texans for a touchdown, which was one of the longest runs in the NFL this season.
Henry has been one of the, if not the best running back in the NFL for the last three seasons. He has led the NFL in rushing yards and rushing touchdowns for two straight seasons. The next best offensive player this season would be Alvin Kamara. However, Kamara is nowhere near the amount of rushing yards Henry had in 2020. Mahomes can also take the honor of offensive player of the year after already winning it in 2018, but Henry would be the number one choice for the award.
Coach of the Year: Kevin Stefanski
The Cleveland Browns had an extraordinary year in 2020. No one would have predicted in the beginning of the season that the Browns would not only make the playoffs but beat the Steelers in the Wild Card game and come close to pulling an upset against the Chiefs in the divisional round of the playoffs. They finished the season with a 11-5 record, second in the AFC North, and appeared in the playoffs for the first time since 2002. The Browns pulled a huge upset during the Wild Card game when they scored 48 points on the Steelers to knock them out of the playoffs. Stefanski deserves all the credit for the success the Browns had this season. After losing Odell Beckham early in the season, he was able to manage to change the game up for the Browns and rely on running back Nick Chubb to bring them most of the points.
Considering this was Stefanski’s first season as head coach for the Browns, he has already made a huge impact in Mayfield’s game. In 2019 and in the beginning of 2020, Mayfield continued to make several rookie mistakes that affected his game and his confidence. Stefanski was able to continue to trust that Mayfield will be a leader of his team and continued to give him the opportunity to play, even though he was benched when the Browns were down 38-0 to the Steelers during Week 6. Stefanski is a coach all the Browns players trust in and will continue to trust in their head coach for years to come.
NFL MVP: Aaron Rodgers
Aaron Rodgers had a monster year with the Packers in 2020. With his league high 48 touchdown passes, Rodgers had one of the best seasons of his career at the age of 37. He led the Packers to one of the league’s best offenses and another trip to the NFC Championship. Rodgers’ only competitor for the MVP race would be Patrick Mahomes. Mahomes and Rodgers had very similar seasons and it will be a two-man race for MVP.
Mahomes has the advantage of playing on the best team in the NFL and with an offense that includes Tyreek Hill and Travis Kelce. Rodgers, however, does not have that advantage and was able to make his offensive one of the bests in the league despite the many injuries suffered to his offense all season. Do not be surprise if we see Rodgers crowned NFL MVP for the third time in his career on Saturday Night.