In August, the smart money was on Andrew Luck to win the 2012 NFL Offensive Rookie of the Year award.
Coming out of Stanford, Luck had it all: laser precision, a sizeable pocket presence, and a football IQ that set him leagues ahead of his rookie class.
By week 10 of the 2012 NFL season however, Luck’s ROY prize is no sure bet.
Don’t get us wrong: he’s performed spectacularly, which is no easy feat considering the mountainously lofty expectations set in front of him. Heck, Luck just set a rookie passing record this past Sunday with 433 yards in the air against the Dolphins. Clearly he isn’t fazed by the hype.
But Luck’s competition is extremely stiff this year, much stiffer than Cam Newton’s last year (2nd place finisher Andy Dalton only received three votes) and Sam Bradford’s the year before (Mike Williams and Maurkice Pouncey received the six votes Bradford didn’t).
Comparatively, Luck, despite his stellar performance in leading an underrated Colts team thus far, faces a colossal challenge in taking home NFL Offensive ROY award.
Going into the season, many believed his only competition would be similarly hyped QB Robert Griffin III of the Redskins.
The budding star nicknamed “RG3” has done right about everything for the Redskins this season (a 94 passer rating with eight TDs in the air and six on the ground), but even he may not be the favorite to win the 2012 offensive ROY.
No, that favorite could very well be the unheralded Doug Martin (RB, Tampa Bay), who in his last two games has rushed for almost 400 yards and five touchdowns. If anything, experts predicted Cleveland RB Trent Richardson to be the 2012 draft class’s best rusher.
Martin, however, has come out of near obscurity to propel himself to near the front of the line, if not at the head of it.
This isn’t to say he is the guaranteed Offensive Rookie of the Year award. If Martin continues running like a man possessed however, he could very well upset the preseason favorites and take home the trophy.
Again though, we’re looking at an absolutely phenomenal NFL offensive rookie class. The aforementioned Luck, Griffin III, Martin, and Richardson are joined by surprise stars like Russell Wilson on Seattle, Alfred Morris on the Redskins, and Ryan Tannehill on the Dolphins.
Whoever wins, this year’s rookies have been a treat for NFL fans to watch.