Who Deserves to Be the NFL's Rookie of the Year?

Could Aldon Smith and his 14 sacks snag the award from Cam Newton and his 35 touchdowns?

camNABERRCROP.jpg

The 2011 NFL football season was a tremendous one for rookies. We saw one quarterback light it up like never before, while another led a previously downtrodden team to a rare postseason appearance.

A wide array of rookie receivers also stood out, making what is often considered a tough transition from college to the NFL look much easier. The running back class wasn't extremely strong, but we did see some huge performances here and there from that position as well.

The defensive side of the ball is where some of the best rookie performances were. Pass-rushers dominated opposing offensive lines, corners played well against seasoned receivers and linebackers stood strong in coverage.

This article is going to focus on the top candidates for the 2012 Rookie of the Year award (winners will be announced Saturday night at the NFL Honors award show, 9 EST, NBC). You will see a mix of offensive and defensive players on this list. The odds for each player are their chances to win either the Offensive Rookie of the Year or the Defensive Rookie of the Year.

This post also appears on Bleacher Report, an Atlantic partner site.

Image credit: Reuters

Presented by

Vincent Frank is a featured columnist at Bleacher Report.

Never Tell People How Old They Look

Age discrimination affects us all. Who cares about youth? James Hamblin turns to his colleague Jeffrey Goldberg for advice.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Never Tell People How Old They Look

Age discrimination affects us all. James Hamblin turns to a colleague for advice.

Video

Would You Live in a Treehouse?

A treehouse can be an ideal office space, vacation rental, and way of reconnecting with your youth.

Video

Pittsburgh: 'Better Than You Thought'

How Steel City became a bikeable, walkable paradise

Video

A Four-Dimensional Tour of Boston

In this groundbreaking video, time moves at multiple speeds within a single frame.

Video

Who Made Pop Music So Repetitive? You Did.

If pop music is too homogenous, that's because listeners want it that way.

More in Entertainment

Just In